What is self-doubt

Where do self-doubts come from - and how to overcome them

Conquering self-doubt: 9 tips against uncertainty

How can one silence the inner critic and gradually get rid of negative self-doubts? The latter arise when one doubts one's strengths, skills and thus one's self-worth. Conversely, this means that self-doubt decreases when you focus on your strengths and successes. Unfortunately, that's easier said than done, because stuck thinking and feeling patterns are difficult to break and certainly not to be changed overnight. If you want to overcome your self-doubts, you usually have to work hard and again and again. These methods can help with this.

1. Train mindfulness

Try to focus on the here and now and to be very conscious of yourself - be it through meditation, a leisurely walk or an excursion into nature. It is important that you find yourself and become aware of yourself. This also includes looking at your strengths instead of sweeping them under the rug. For a mindful person, every little success and every moment of joy, no matter how meaningless, counts. Feelings of happiness have a particularly strong effect on the subconscious and are the best remedy for deep-seated fears and doubts.

2. No more comparisons

Even if it seems that your colleague or girlfriend lives in a dazzling world and is kissed by happiness and success, it rarely corresponds to reality. Comparing yourself to others is the worst thing you can do to your self-esteem. Because unconsciously you always look at the strengths of others and compare them with your own weaknesses. Logically, that your own self-confidence draws the short straw! Instead, compare yourself with your former self and bring positive developments to the fore: What were you unable to do before, what you have learned in the meantime? What were you afraid of in the past that is easy for you now?

3. Banish the perfectionist

Self-doubts often arise from an exaggeratedly perfectionist claim to oneself. One is subject to it, although it primarily costs time and energy - and in the end it does not make you happy. Make more realistic demands on yourself and gradually develop a better relationship with mistakes. That means: approaching things more relaxed, allowing mistakes and forcing your perfectionist self to be satisfied with less. You will see: it is a liberating feeling that brings new energy and courage with it.

4. Eliminate physical causes

If physical factors trigger self-doubt, medical help should be sought. For example, if you suffer from bad skin, a disturbed digestion and are constantly plagued by a bloated stomach, this can lead to a bad body feeling and insecurity. If you can't get any further with a gut-friendly diet, you should seek help from an expert!

5. Play through the worst-case scenario

Your friends see you as a failure, you embarrass yourself at a presentation, you don't land the contract - what's the worst that can happen? Anyone who clearly visualizes the “worst case” and thus their doubts and fears will find that there is not so much to lose. Even if the job goes wrong, the world won't end, will it?

6. Distinguish feelings from facts

Many thoughts that are buzzing through your head all day long have nothing to do with reality. Starting from a toxic cocktail of bad experiences, the brain tinkers together a negative scenario full of self-doubt and fears and sells it outwardly as reality. Trick it by putting the negative vortex on paper and analyzing and evaluating each one from a distance. Are the statements actually true or is your brain playing a nasty trick on you? Make a careful distinction between feelings and facts. Just because you're uncomfortable in a situation doesn't mean it's true.

7. Dare to change

Self-doubts do not always have to be caused by one's own personality or negative childhood experiences. It can also be the current living conditions that create doubts and insecurities: a job that you cannot identify with, a choleric boss or a partner who does not value you. If you are not happy, change your life circumstances. Although the first step is difficult, you will find how liberating it is to actively take control of your own situation instead of waiting still.

8. Keep a success diary

Even if it reminds you of the teenage times: keep a diary or at least a list of what you have already achieved. Before going to bed each night, write down what you can be proud of that day. Have you had a successful day at work, jogged five kilometers or did a good deed? That cannot be taken for granted! If you keep positive experiences and strengths in mind, over time, your thoughts will get used to noticing successes - not just failures. The former not only make you proud, but also boost your self-confidence.

9. Find help

Admitting weaknesses and accepting outside help is no shame - even if it feels like it. Talk to friends about your fears and doubts, or get professional advice from a therapist. Talking can be very liberating and sharing with others can help you judge your own self-doubts a little more objectively. In addition: Just knowing that you have to and want to change something is the first step towards improvement.