Self-doubt and indecision will complicate Pathwalking.

I strive to be less doubtful about who I am, and to do better with making decisions about my life.  Pathwalking is about choosing for myself, rather than letting random chance just happen.

Yet I still question if I am deserving of this.  I doubt myself, my abilities to do the things I want to do.  This in turn can make me indecisive, and I get stuck in uncertainty.

Self-doubt comes from many places.  Perceived failures, discipline or lack thereof, wrong choices, disproven beliefs, mistakes, miscommunication, and a lack of outside validation.  It is unfortunately easy to blame those outside forces for causing self-doubt, but this is totally an inside job.

If I am doubting myself, then it’s all on me.  The only person inside my head is me.  Nobody else can think for me, unless I give up my free will and let them.

As if that’s not enough of a complication, focusing on the things that I am doubting about myself draws more things.  The self-talk in my head is too negative, and as such not very productive.  I berate myself, see my flaws, get upset with mistakes and missteps and perceived failures too easily.

This complicates Pathwalking, because I get focused on things I don’t want for myself, and then of course that will create more of those.  I get more doubtful, and then get frustrated when I am unproductive, and become distracted because I can’t focus.

Self-doubt is a liar.

This is a hard truth to accept.  Your self-doubt is a lie.  It is that nagging voice in your head telling you that you are unacceptable.  This is the voice saying you are worthless.  It’s the brain weasels running around aimlessly, probably giving you a headache.

When we believe the worst of ourselves, we don’t feel terribly good.  This is where depression is born, and the lying black wolf will make us indecisive about all kinds of things.  You start to question decisions, ideas, plans and goals when you doubt yourself.

Self-doubt may be a wholly internal matter, however its cause can be rooted in outside forces and influences.  When you do not receive validation, whatever form that may take, it can be disheartening.  If you are not recognized for your skills and contributions, you may begin to question your value and worth.

This gets even more complicated when the outside forces are loved ones.  If your own family makes you question your value and worth, it’s hard not to doubt yourself.  When your friends tell you things “for your own good” that might upset you, this too can make you doubtful.  That’s particularly rough when they are questioning your choices, and causing you to question them in turn.

Self-doubt can lead to indecision.

When you doubt yourself, you start to doubt your choices.  You begin to wonder if you are making good choices, or bad choices.  As such, this can lead you to either not make a choice, or to be particularly indecisive.

I have spent a great deal of my life in indecision.  Rather than choose wrong, I either didn’t choose at all, or hmmmed and hawed until I either had no choices remaining, or only one choice available.  I didn’t choose to pursue professional radio after college because I doubted I would be able to build a similar life to that which I had in Podunk, Middle America.  No pursuit of a professional theatre career was every truly initiated by me, because there is huge amounts of uncertainty when it comes to theatre and success.  I didn’t put my focus into turning my writing into a career in my twenties because I listened to those who said that it didn’t pay.

The indecision of my twenties and thirties was fueled by my self-doubt, and unsurprisingly my self-doubt was fueled by my indecision.  Because I spent nearly two decades constantly doubting myself and being indecisive, I did not find financial, career, or relationship successes.  I came to believe that I was a failure, and that I didn’t deserve to succeed because of my mistakes along the way.

I began to believe my own doubts were true.  Maybe I was a failure, maybe I was unworthy of respect.  How could I turn this around and change the dialogue?

Turn self-doubt into self-worth.

I have begun to see now that I am a worthwhile individual.  I contribute to the world around me, helping friends and family and even strangers when I can.  There is worth in what I do, and rather than get hung up on long-term and overarching success, I need to see success in the small things in life.

Often this is still easier said than done.  I am currently striking out on my own to find freelance writing jobs and take my existing work to the next level.  With my desire to be a bestselling author, I am working on finding ways to increase sales of my work, and get myself out there.

Now I have the opportunity to live what I have been writing about for almost six years.  Pathwalking is choosing my own destiny, making choices and deciding to have the life I most want.

Self-doubt is a saboteur.  I know that some days I am going to feel like I am not able to do this, and that I lack the discipline.  I allow those who mean well but say upsetting things to get inside my head; negative news well outside my control impacts my thoughts.  This needs to be acknowledged because it is there, and unavoidable.  But, once I have done that, I need to them proceed to let it go.

I am capable of anything I set my mind to.  I need to be bold, make decisions, and not let my self-doubt interfere with the paths I am walking.

What do you do when faced with self-doubt and indecision?

 

This is the two-hundred ninety-eighth entry in my series. These weekly posts are ideas for and my personal experiences with walking along the path of life.  I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.

Thank you for joining me.  Feel free to re-blog and share.

The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.

If you enjoy Pathwalking, you may also want to read my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

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