Toxic people can also undermine confidence by never being happy or satisfied, making the subject of their negativity feel as though they can’t do anything right.
Unfortunately, far too many people are subjected to this abuse and negativity for years at a time, and it takes a toll by taking root in one’s mind and affecting the way they think about themselves and their ability to impact the world.
Anyone may experience doubts about themselves or their capabilities, but they can dig deep and push through it.
There are a couple of different ways to improve one’s belief in themselves and their capabilities.
Reframe Self-Doubt Into Motivation
The quality of our thoughts often filters into our lives. Consider the thoughts that you have when you are faced with a moment of self-doubt.
What do they sound like? Are they kind, supportive, or positive?
They will most likely be critical statements like:
“I’m not smart enough to accomplish this.”
“There’s no point in doing this. I’ll just fail.”
“My dream is stupid or silly anyway.”
The truth is, most ideas and endeavors die before they are even tried because of self-doubt. The more a person repeats these kinds of statements to themselves, the deeper it sinks into their mindset and the more they believe it.
Instead, we must actively work to replace these statements with positive affirmations of love, kindness, and support.
But do you deserve that?
Of course you do. Everyone deserves to feel healthy love and self-esteem.
Here are some example affirmations you can use.
Instead of: “I’m not smart enough to accomplish this.”
Tell yourself: “I am smart and capable, and I can succeed.”
Instead of: “There’s no point in doing this. I’ll just fail.”
Tell yourself: “I want to do this because I believe in it. Even if I don’t succeed, I can take what I’ve learned and try again.”
Instead of: “My dream is stupid or silly anyway.”
Tell yourself: “My dreams are as fair and valuable as those of anyone else.”
And keep doing that with as many negative self-talk points as possible.
It’s simple, but it’s not easy, and it does take time to start replacing those old, negative thoughts with newer, more positive thoughts.
Keep at it.
Remind Yourself Of Past Successes
You have succeeded at many things in your life. Perhaps you don’t see them as successes, but they are.
They might be big things like passing an exam or achieving a personal goal, or they might be little “wins” such as standing up for yourself or cooking a delicious meal.
In times of self-doubt, these memories are elusive. Yet they are a powerful force in eradicating negative self-talk.
By presenting hard facts about what you have already achieved in your life, you contradict the doubt your mind is attempting to convince you of.
It is very difficult to believe that you are incapable when you can recall a time when you clearly displayed your capability.
In other words, an “I can’t do this” thought in your mind is disarmed by saying, “Oh, but I have achieved this, this, and this in the past.”
There are a lot of people in the world just waiting to knock down the ideas and ambitions of others.
They are miserable and often like seeing other people be just as miserable as they are. Some are bitter and burnt out from life. Others are simply mean or bad people who prefer to harm and destroy.
Being around these people on a regular basis is a sure way to perpetuate negative self-image and self-esteem.
Take a good look at the people that are closest to you, the people that you spend your time with. How many of these people are a supportive, positive influence in your life?
These are the kinds of people that you need to spend more time with, investing your energy into building better friendships and relationships with them.
How many of them are a negative presence in your life? Always quick to criticize, knock you down a peg, or highlight what they perceive to be your negative attributes?
These kinds of people will undermine your confidence and destroy your ability to progress. Optimally, you’d want to eliminate these people from your life as much as possible, but that isn’t always an option.
If it’s not an option or you don’t want to take such a drastic step, minimizing the time you spend with them and information you give them about your life or goals can help. They can’t criticize what they don’t know.
There is a third type of person, the flat or gray person. They are neither positive nor negative, they are just sort of there.
They don’t really try to accomplish anything, don’t want anything better for themselves or their well-being, or really do much.
Spending time with these individuals can lull you into a state of complacency. Instead of going out to get things done, you’re met with things like, “Why bother?”
Optimally, you’ll want to distance yourself from these people as well.
The quality of the people you spend your time with absolutely matters.
Reexamine What Failure Means To You
Are you afraid of failure? Failure is often seen as the worst possible scenario for any venture, but it’s not.
Failure is one step on the path to success. Sure, there may be the odd case here and there where someone developed a plan, set a goal, and marched straight to that goal with little issue, but that’s not how it works for most people.
For most people, failure is just one step on the path to success. The people that succeed look at the failure, tell themselves, “Well, that didn’t work!” And then they try a new or different path.
Failure is often used as a weapon by negative and gray people. What’s the point of trying if you’re just going to fail? And you know what, there is a tiny grain of truth in that statement because most attempts at success do fail.
However, failure doesn’t mean you give up on your path. It doesn’t mean an end to whatever it is you’re pursuing.
It just means you need to pivot and find another way, using the experience you’ve already gained on your path to continue pushing for success.
Forgive your failures. View them not as an end to your journey, but as a stepping stone on your path to success.
Build Trust And Love With Yourself
Are you your own best friend? That’s a lofty, but necessary aspiration.
Ideally, we would love and care for a best friend as much as any relative, possibly more. We’d be supportive, uplifting, and try to be there for that person when they were feeling low. We’d want them to view themselves as positively as we view them.
And since you will be spending the rest of your life with yourself, fostering such an attitude for yourself can make the whole path of life much smoother.
Everyone has flaws that they must navigate. Self-doubt is but one of many, and it never completely goes away.
There will always be some small voice in the back of your head that professes doubt or tries to convince you that you cannot accomplish your goals.
But you can.
You are capable, you are worthy, and you deserve to find success just as much as anyone else in the world.