Doubt is one of the most off-putting feelings in the world. There are fewer things worse than feeling like you’re not good enough. You put effort into your work, your hobbies, your relationships, and you feel like you’re always falling short. It can be debilitating. You may ask yourself, “Why even bother? Nothing I do is worth the effort.”
Doubt can inflict itself on even the most successful people. Think about professional athletes. They get paid incredible amounts of money, work extremely hard, and dedicate their lives to being the best at what they do. But only one team can be the winner. One game, one bad lap in a race, even one bad throw is all it takes to knock a team from the top. In the dating world, we are constantly being evaluated on whether our personalities will match up with those we are pursing. Do we make enough money? Are we good looking enough? Are we too boring, or too self-centered? Being broken up with is one of the worst feelings, because you’ll know in a hurry what your weaknesses are. “I’m breaking up with you because I don’t think you’ll be successful enough to support a family.” Ouch. Life is hard sometimes, and there’s no doubt about that. But despite all of this, there is such a thing as healthy doubt. What is it?
Doubting Your Doubts
The first thing you need to remember is that nobody is perfect. Some people seem to think that they’re God’s gift to the earth and that they can do no wrong. Those people are delusional and you shouldn’t worry so much about what they think or say. However, when we are experiencing those thoughts of how we’ll never be good enough, we can take those opportunities to realize who you currently are and line those qualities up against who you want to become.
This list from Fastcompany.com says you're experiencing healthy doubt if you:
Challenge your assumptions
Are feeling driven
Are aware of the changing marketplace
Ask, “What’s our backup plan if we’re wrong?”
Accept the reality that sometimes you’ll miss the mark
Know that each stumble is just part of climbing the mountain
Conversely, you’re experiencing destructive doubt if you:
Question your abilities
Are feeling paralyzed
Are blind to opportunities
Say, “I’ll never try that again”
Look at failure as a negative feature of your personal self-worth
Think that stumbling is the end of the world
When it comes to self doubt, you have options. You can wallow in harmful amounts of negativity and self-depreciation, or you can rise up to the occasion and improve. People sometimes think that they can’t change. They think, “Well that’s just the way I am.” However, the beauty of life is that we can change, and it’s completely up to us. Hopefully we’ll try to change ourselves for the better.