Ever had one of those days where you just feel, meh? Wait, you have them all the time? Me too! Do you think it has something to do with working for yourself, holding your destiny in your own hands, and having no clue as to what the future may hold? Yeah, me too!
My name is Turndog and I suffer from self doubt. As someone whose interviewed 100 +fellow entrepreneurs and creatives, I’m assured I’m not alone. In fact, I’m often told how everyone suffers with such stomach churning doubt, and becoming a successful person with fame and fortune doesn’t do a great deal to rid it.
The start of 2014 has been a tricky time for me, because ideas and launches haven’t quite gone according to plan. I battle self doubt, fear, and the abyss of unknown that stares me in the face each morning. I try new ideas with no clue as to whether they’ll work. I work on projects with no definitive pay at the end of it. I meet people and open myself up and feel vulnerable most days.
It’s hard, but I fight this daily battle with one simple thing: MY STORY.
I’M UNIQUE. YOU’RE UNIQUE. WE’RE ALL BLOODY UNIQUE!
I think one of the reasons we doubt ourselves is because we don’t know if what we offer is worth IT. Obviously, we believe deep down that what we offer is incredible, but when you hustle through meetings, face rejection and failure, and one mistake after another (which lets face it, covers everyone on the planet), it’s hard to be definitive in your convictions.
- IS MY IDEA BETTER THAN HIS?
- DOES SHE OFFER A BETTER SERVICE THAN ME?
- IS IT WORTH THIS MUCH MONEY? THIS MUCH TIME? THIS MUCH EFFORT?
But you have a story and it’s worth sharing with the world. Not only that, it houses your true USP, and when I’m down in the dumps I assure myself that I’m different, special, and ideal for certain people and businesses. Simply put, I’m unique. You’re unique. We’re all bloody unique!
I’m not saying it’s a special potion that fixes every issue and doubt in your world. More often than not it’s a short term fix, but focussing on my story helps me hone in on the important things in life, and usually, my self doubt and worries aren’t based on the important things. They’re based on silly crap we shouldn’t waste precious seconds on.
STOP WASTING VALUABLE RESOURCES ON WORTHLESS WORRIES
In the grand scheme of things, the relationships we build are important, not money.
The projects we work on are what’s remembered, not how many hits our website gets.
The conversations we have matters, not the amount of likes or retweets we receive.
And I know, it’s easier said than done, and don’t worry I spend more time worrying about money and accounts and new leads than I’d like to admit to. It’s time well spent in part, too, because without money we can’t do a great deal. You have a family to look after, and bills to pay.
But worrying about money doesn’t get the job done. Nor does does writing a Blog Post with Website Hits in mind. It’s the impact you have that matters, and creating something of value. And this is where the Power of Storytelling comes in, because YOUR Story houses everything you do: the product, your service, style, the little extras, YOU, the people involved, and so much more…
So, stop wasting valuable resources on worthless worries, because when you combine all these attributes together, it’s safe to say YOU ARE UNIQUE. Be proud of your story, and be proud of what you’re building. If you do, it’ll keep the self doubt at bay… at least for another day 🙂
MY ADVICE: TAKE A MOMENT TO BREATHE
Hopefully by now you’re nodding along, on board with your unique awesomeness. Still, when you have a bad day, or just faced rejection, or dealt a heavy blow, it’s easy to allow self doubt in. There is no definitive answer to combatting this, but my advice: take a moment to breathe.
Srinivas Rao finds salvation in surfing.
Jenny Blake turns to yoga
Chris Sands jumps on his bike
Me? I try and force myself to take a walk and allow an inner dialogue to consume me. This may sound strange, and the dialogue is often negative in the beginning, full of worry and doubt. However, as I walk and allow my mind to drift (and the fresh air to fill my head and lungs), my inner conversation improves. New ideas forms. My shoulders soften and my chest eases.
And by the time I finish my walk, I look at myself in the mirror, or the reflection of my laptop screen, and nod. I nod because I left my job and chose this world for a reason. I nod because I know deep down I do believe in myself. I nod because I won’t quit, and I will push through this bad day, and make sure tomorrow is a better one.
FIND YOUR HAPPY ZONE AND KEEP IT CLOSE
I have no idea what your salvation is. Chances are you don’t, either. It’s probably already in your life though, so take a moment to consider what makes you happy. What calms you down. What peaces you the F&%k out.
Whatever it is, treasure it. Find your happy zone and keep it close. Keep it so close you can grab it at a moments notice and heave yourself out of the self doubt dungeon before it has chance to dig its shitty claws in.
But above all, think of the bigger picture. You will have bad days and you will fail. But you’re also crafting a story that nobody else is. Because of this, you’re different and unique and amazing, and if you keep pushing yourself, and challenging your mind, and elevating your standards, you will find success.
But like I said in the beginning, fame and fortune doesn’t rid self doubt completely. The best of the very best still suffer from it, but they’ve discovered ways to push through, and they know, deep down, that what they offer is worth while. Is worth the time and effort. Is worth all the hassle in the world.
The Power of Storytelling is great, and one of its best qualities is the confidence it breeds. When you feel meh, consider all the amazing things you do that makes you who you are. When you doubt your ability, know that you have a grander plan that’s far stronger than the silly self doubt consuming you.
But you have to believe in your story, and take the time to build it. You also have to find salvation… that happy place of surfing or yoga or walking, which allows you to focus on the story, and look past your fear.
And know this: You aren’t alone. Everyone suffers with self doubt, even the most sociopathic individuals amongst us. It’s part of the journey, but it isn’t the defining part.
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