When we try something new or go after a big goal, we will feel doubt. That's not the problem. The problem is when we make the doubt mean that something is wrong. We stop instead continue forward. That's the problem.
Instead of just recognizing that of course doubt is going to come up! We're doing new things! We make it mean that something has gone terribly wrong and then we go to work to find evidence to support that assertion. Anytime we fail, or don't live up to our expectations, or we don't meet the benchmarks we set for ourselves, or it takes longer than we thought it would, we make it mean that of course this will never work. We were right, that was crazy. NO! Finding evidence that the doubt is right is what causes us to quit and give up on our dreams.
It's not the doubt itself - it's what we make the doubt mean that gets us into trouble. Don't make the doubt mean ANYTHING because it doesn't mean anything until you give it meaning. It's just there.
I love this analogy from my mentor, Brooke. She says, "Doubt is going to be there in the riding along in the passenger seat next to you on your way to your goals." Let's take this analogy further. Imagine you're driving and doubt is your passenger. It's buckled in and it stays quiet. No problem, right? You might even forget it's there sometimes. Now, imagine you're driving and you're simultaneously trying to shove doubt out the passenger door while also screaming and yelling at the doubt. Not so safe and not so peaceful anymore. That's what happens when we think doubt shouldn't be there, so we try to get rid of it by suppressing it or arguing with it. Not only does it not work, it also shifts all of your focus to the doubt and not to the thing you're working on!
What's the solution?
- Notice that the doubt is there.
- Get back to work.
- If you find yourself giving the doubt meaning, by saying things like, "I hope this works," or "I don't know if I can do this." Catch yourself, and redirect your mind to: "This will work," and "I will make this happen - watch me go, doubt."
Sometimes it's helpful to think back to a time when something seemed impossible and you accomplished it anyway. You had doubt then, too and you did it anyway. It's the same thing now. The doubt is meaningless. Just a companion that likes to join you on your way to new things.
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