It’s one of the corniest self-improvement cliches, but believing in yourself means everything. It’s the difference between living the life you want to live deep down or continuing to remain on the sidelines — afraid to do all of the things you’d do if you just had a little bit more confidence, certainty, and conviction.
And reading one little blog post about believing in yourself isn’t going to fix your problems. Hell, sometimes you can read 500 blog posts about it and, still, nothing changes. Here’s something you can use to keep your spirits up and your hopes up, though.
You can, and should, go back to the drawing board as many times as you need to. There’s a simple reason for this. What alternative do you really have?
Either you try to jack yourself up over and over again until it somehow sticks. Or you just give up on yourself and your dreams for good. If you’re reading this, feel fortunate that you’re not yet in the latter camp, and let’s go back to the drawing board again, right now.
You have two sides to your personality. You have the one that tells you you’re not good enough, the one that causes resistance, the one that provides all the reasons why you shouldn’t believe in yourself at all. It knows all your flaws and mistakes. It knows about all the times you made promises to yourself you didn’t keep. And it knows which buttons to push to keep you stuck right where you are forever.
But then there’s the other side of you. It’s the one that keeps you coming back to content like this, looking for some gasoline to throw on the fire. It’s the side of you that knows you’re the shit. This side of you knows you could be getting a hell of a lot better results if you just put the puzzle pieces together well enough to get a bit of momentum.
Hell, it’s the one who looks at other people who have what you want and says ‘What’s so special about them? Why can’t you do it?’ It’s the part of you that knows you’re better than this and even reminds you that you’re better than certain people, at least you would be if you lived up to who you’re really supposed to be.
This side of you has a darkness to it. But I’ve found that re-directing some of that dark energy and integrating it works a lot better than trying to pretend it doesn’t exist. Maybe having a chip on your shoulder and something to prove isn’t healthy, but it’s damn effective. If you want to start believing in yourself, start getting a little pissed off and start reminding yourself that you deserve to have more. You’re not overly ambitious. You’re claiming what you feel belongs to you already. There’s a version of your life that you know you’re supposed to have, deep down. It’s your job to aim for exactly that. Nothing less, nothing more.
But then you also have to make it real. That chip on your shoulder and unearned confidence need to be backed up by your actions. Creating high expectations for yourself then meeting them turns you into someone who really believes in yourself.
The strategy? Make sure that you’re just a little bit closer to meeting those high expectations as many times in a row as you possibly can. Cherish every time you make any progress toward shrinking the gap between who you are right now and who you know you’re supposed to be.
At first, it’ll be difficult because you’re just not used to behaving this way. But with time and momentum, it becomes easier to shrink the gap each day and once you get on a roll, your odds of keeping the streak going continues.
There’s no perfect remedy to get you to pursue actions that help you close the gap. Once you have to do that task necessary to build more belief in who you are and what you’re doing, you’re on your own. But when you feel like hesitating, which you will, remind yourself that you’re the shit. Reminder yourself that you deserve what you want and you owe it to yourself to do what it takes to get it.
This might push you over the edge just enough to get you to squeeze out that task for the day. If you do manage to get the job done for the day, celebrate your quick victory and get ready to do it all over again tomorrow. In the next section, I’ll get to some specific recommendations for becoming someone who believes in yourself, but remember the philosophy that helps you get there. You’re already a winner. Your actions just haven’t caught all the way up.
Let’s take a look at some practical recommendations and techniques to help you believe in yourself more. I’ve created this entire list of actions based on a simple question — what would you do if you were the type of person who believes in yourself?
Those four words dominate your life. Your behavior is a result of the type of person you think you are. It causes you to believe you’re the type of person you think you are. But just keep those words in mind when you’re trying to change your life and adopt new behaviors.
Don’t just say you’re going to change. Focus on becoming the type of person who does certain good habits and actions and doesn’t do others, like these:
So how do you get the right voice to win? Well, you do everything I said above and then use this fail-safe method for when you eventually and inevitably regress to the mean and experience setbacks.
Remind yourself of all the things you miss out on in life simply because you don’t believe in yourself to get the job done. Think about how insane that actually is. You could have a much better situation, but you don’t because of nothing more than your own mind.
I’m not making light of your situation, quite the opposite. I get how hard it is to entirely transform the way you’ve been living. That’s why constant reminders are necessary. And I’m sharing the constant reminder I’ve used to push myself to get what I want. I simply thought about what I’d be missing out on if I decided to fold. Honestly, I’d get really irritated and worked up about it until I did something about it.
That’s probably what you’re going to have to do, too. Take some time right now to imagine all the things you’re missing out on just because you don’t go for them. Imagine what it would be like to have them because you can have them.
Maybe you should just learn to be content and let go of your egoic desires, or whatever, but that’s not the side of the self-help spectrum I live on. I don’t live on that side because no amount of kumbaya thinking and meditation is going to block out that voice you know you’re supposed to be listening to. Trust me, I’ve been meditating for six years.
I feel good when I do the things I know I’m supposed to be doing and becoming the person I know I’m supposed to become. It will make you feel good too. But you’re missing out on it right now. Do something about it.