Confidence and Insecurity might as well be the “good angel” and “bad angel” sitting atop our shoulders governing every decision. In many of us there is a constant battle within to achieve our full potential and do great things with confidence which is somehow crippled by insecurities and self-doubt.
We end up letting the “bad angel” belittle us into believing the terrible lies and then feel even worse for doing nothing about it. Insecurities can be quite a beast to overcome. The first step is learning to recognize the beast. Then avoid falling victim to the exaggerated narratives seeping into your mind.
Sounds easy enough, right? It’s not. We are conditioned throughout life to believe these insecurities are as true as the sky is blue. From cultural conditioning to what we believe as other people’s opinions, we allow the insecurities to grow into an unruly, unrelenting monster.
Signs That Insecurities Are Holding You Back
Lack of confidence when making decisions
Focusing on the negative in situations
Overly critical of self
Problems standing up for yourself
Difficulty accepting compliments
Avoid taking risks
Care too much about what other people think
If any of these signs sound familiar, it’s time to take back control of your life and stop allowing insecurities to hold you back. Think of all the missed opportunities and the accomplishments just waiting for your confidence to outweigh insecurity.
By practicing these few steps you’ll find yourself stronger, more confident and able to hit the mute button on the “bad angel”. The negative inner-dialogue pulling you into the rabbit hole despair won’t be nearly as powerful as you make greater and greater strides in the direction of self-assurance and self-worth.
The most important part is to remember that this process is about you, not the bystanders in your life. You are the only one with the power to create the life you want and deserve.
Identify: Because insecurity is habitual, sometimes it’s hard to identify. Think of the signs listed above as triggers. They start the whole process of doubt and despair. You have to identify the instances before you can take further action.
Objectify: Once you identify a moment when you’re feeling insecure and like you want to retreat into your shell, now is the time to stop the train and objectify the situation. Look at this from an outward and unemotional standpoint. A common mistake here is to think of what others may think instead of being truly objective.
Strengthen: Now you’ll want to build up your confidence by looking at past successes and reflecting on how you felt during that time. When you recall those emotions, you’re likely to move forward with achieving that same level of self-satisfaction and accomplishment.
Reassess: So, your confidence is boosted a bit and you’re ready to take this thing on, head first. Time to reassess the previous doubts and insecurities by asking yourself some questions.
What’s the worst that could possibly happen?
And if the worst thing does happen, who will that affect?
How will I act if the worse thing that could happen actually happens?
Will I have any regrets if I let my insecurities hold me back?
Oftentimes we allow our insecurities to have so much control, they trick us into believing things will turn out one way or another when in fact that’s probably the least likely thing to happen.
Reframe the insecurity by acknowledging the worst-case scenario and apply your new confidence in knowing it will probably never happen, but if it does, you’re ready to handle it.
Follow Through: And finally, you’re going to use positive self-talk and commit to making this insecurity disappear by following through with your plan. Steer clear of any negativity and keep pushing forward.
Don’t allow yourself to hide in the turtle shell. And even if it doesn’t turn out the way you dreamed, you got out there and showed insecurity who is boss! That’s a huge step!
You’ll find that each time you follow the steps above, your insecurities diminish and a newer, stronger, more self-assured version of you emerges. Insecurities don’t have to hold you back and you are the only one with the power to make it stop.
It gets easier over time as your confidence is slowly being restored, mostly because things usually never turn out as bad as we imagine they could.