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Manage Self Doubt

25 Sep 2016   Shanti Gowans
Here is an Indian folk tale about an elephant and a dog who became pregnant at same time. Three months later the dog gave birth to six puppies. Six months later the dog was pregnant again, and nine months on it gave birth to some more puppies. The pattern continued. On the eighteenth month the dog approached the elephant questioning, "Are you sure that you are pregnant? We became pregnant on the same date, I have given birth three times to a dozen puppies and they are now grown to become big dogs, yet you are still pregnant. What is going on?". The elephant replied, "There is something I want you to understand. What I am carrying is not a puppy but an elephant. I only give birth to one in two years. When my baby hits the ground, the earth feels it. When my baby crosses the road, human beings stop and watch in admiration. What I carry draws attention. It is mighty and great.". This story tells you not to lose faith when you see others receive answers to their prayers while you are still waiting and praying. Do not be envious of others testimony. If you have not as yet received your own blessings, don't despair. Remind yourself "My time is coming, and when it does, I shall respond filled with admiration."

Self-doubt is never fun and it can be quite counterproductive.
Here is a simple three step strategy to deploy when you start to doubt in your own abilities to get things done.
Give it a try the next time that little voice in your head tells you that things can’t be done, you’re not good enough, or there’s no point in trying because there’s no way it will work. Gain the confidence you need and then get to work. 

• Determine What is Causing The Doubt 

Before you can do anything about it, you need to find out what is causing your self-doubt. Is it fear? Is it not having enough knowledge? Is it a lack of self-confidence? Spend a little time thinking about why exactly you feel that you can’t do this. 

This first step is crucial. Don’t skim over it... your solutions will not work unless you get down to the root of the problem. Be honest with yourself and dig deep. It is well worth it since this alone will often help and it will make the next two steps much easier to do. 

Figure Out What You Can Do About It 

Once you know exactly what the problem is, it is time to make a plan for overcoming it. 

If you don’t (as yet) know how to do something, you must find someone that can teach you how to do it, read a book, take a course, or watch a YouTube video. The world is full of knowledge for those who seek it. 

If fear is fueling your self-doubts, face that fear and ask yourself what would happen if you did it anyway. This simple act is often all it takes to gain the confidence to give it a try despite the fear. 

Do What You’ve Set Out To Do 

The last step is simple. It is time to take action and get to work. Do something. Do anything. Make some progress and move forward towards reaching your goals. 

The hardest part is often just getting going and taking those first few steps. Yet that’s all it takes is to get moving and build a little momentum. Remember the adage: The journey of a thousand miles begins where you are…with one step.

This is often enough to silence the self-doubt and give you a boost of confidence. And that in turn will keep you going. 

Give this simple little 3-Step strategy a try the next time you suffer from self-doubt and let it work for you. 
Well begun is half done. 


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About Shantiji

Shanti Gowans is the globally recognised author and founder of Shanti Yoga™, Meditation and Ayurveda for the self, family and community.

Shantiji has brought the concepts and practices of a healthy body and a still mind to thousands of Australians through her Yoga and Meditation programs on national television... Read more about Shantiji's biography

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