Knowing how you developed self-doubt can sometimes help lead to recovering from that condition. You can build self-esteem by getting to the bottom of how it happened. Some people did have self-esteem at one point, then lost it. Some never had it in the first place.
No matter how you determine what causes your self-doubt, you will be able to overcome it. It does not matter if it is something that developed over time or something you learned in childhood. You can work toward building your belief in yourself so that you can overcome self-doubt.
Limiting Beliefs Learned in Childhood
Many people learn to put off their dreams. They limit their ideas due to well-meaning parents (or sometimes they are not so well-meaning but perhaps abusive parents) who are also stuck in their own self-doubting lives and cannot ever envision anything different. It happens a lot in communities where people are often born very poor and end up lacking experiences and education to see beyond their own lives to the possibilities that are outside their world.
It is not usually the fact that parents want to keep their kids from dreaming; they’re just trying to be realistic. When their child tells them about his big dream to travel the world and become a writer, they react in fear and make statements that may be statistically true but limit their child.
For example, a parent might discourage their child from becoming a writer by telling them no one makes money writing. Or the parent might prevent their child from becoming anything that is above what they are used to having. The parents might fear the costs and fear that their child can not do it even if they try. But this is only due to the parents’ lack of success and understanding of life.
It rubs off on the kids. That is why, statistically, most people do not break out of the class to which they were born. The exciting thing to remember is that some people do, and the reason they do is they were able to see and envision the possibilities and then take action to see it through.
Past Experiences from Bad Relationships
If you used to have a good self-image and did not suffer from much self-doubt but then suddenly or overtime started to develop self-doubt, past experiences and bad relationships got into your head and created this self-doubting experience.
It can be a parent relationship, a friendship, a love interest, a spouse, even a child who is dragging you down and creating self-doubt in your life. These relationships are toxic. Unfortunately, an unhealthy relationship can involve any relationship, both relatives to non-relatives.
All kinds of bad relationships can cause you to doubt yourself. For example;
- A bad relationship
- You were criticized
- Your ideas are considered bad
- Your dream is impossible
- You did not receive encouragement
- You were told everything that could go wrong
- Maybe they were abusive to you about your belief
If you are still in any of these relationships, it may be time to end it if you cannot explain to the person you are going for your dream regardless of their opinion due to fear of abuse.
Bad Work Environments and Experiences
At some point in your life, if you had a job of any kind that turned into a bad experience (especially if it started with your first job), this can stunt you for a lifetime if you let it. Sadly, many people, especially those who take service-oriented jobs or lower-paying jobs, end up with bad experiences.
Even some people who have higher-paying jobs can criticize them so badly that they fear failure, which causes them not to take risks. It ends up causing them to get lousy job reviews. After a bad job review, the person may react badly to that and end up more stuck.
As you can see, this path can affect a person badly at the time and in their future if they are unable to understand that sometimes things happen to good people. They can not accept that they are a good person and a bad thing happened to them. Or they can not learn from their mistakes and realize that they can do better next time. It is a dangerous pattern that can grow and become more than it should.
Lack of Life Experiences
Sometimes a person can suffer from self-doubt only due to a lack of experience. Suppose somebody overly sheltered you in childhood, were sick, or had issues that caused you not to have many experiences in life. In that case, that can turn into fear, anxiety, and even other problems such as agoraphobia that prevent you from stepping out of your comfort zone. If you have no successful experiences to look back on, it can be hard to imagine success. If you have only experienced failure, it can be doubly hard to envision success later.
Whatever the reason for these experiences: overprotective parents, an illness, undiagnosed mental illness, being super-shy, whatever is causing it needs addressing to start experiencing small successes and know what it feels to be successful. If you do not know what that feels like, it will be hard to move forward.
I have divided How to Identify Where Your Self-Doubt Lies into two smaller parts because it became longer than I intended. I will post the rest either later today or tomorrow.
Until tomorrow, stay safe, and keep the faith.