Why are you constantly doubting yourself?


Ishani Sen

Mental Health Ambassador

Have you ever tried to do something but second guessed your capabilities? Have you ever tried to ask someone a question and second-guessed the outcome? Have you ever ended up in not doing that task, or asking that question, or taking that risk? Just because you doubted yourself?

Here’s the thing, our brain is wired to think of ways that we can be harmed, in order to protect itself. Or maybe we have evolved into that kind of thinking.

But as we go about life, if you really start to notice every thought in your head and… in a way listen to the voice in you, you will realize before taking ANY decision, your brain does that thing, that annoying thing that it asks you a question.. 'what if I’m not good enough', 'what if it goes wrong', 'what if I am not accepted'. WHAT IF. If you try and count the number of times you ask yourself the question 'WHAT IF' you will be really surprised.

But do you know what will surprise you even more? You will be more surprised to see how much much of a difference it makes when you stop asking that question.

Let’s try to eliminate the 'what if' from our brain's dictionary. Think of the things you would have done only if your brain hadn’t asked you the question 'what if'.

I was reading Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg the other day and there was this beautiful question she asked: 'What would you do, if you weren’t afraid for a day'? How would you spend that day?

So every time you find yourself asking the question 'what if', instead ask yourself the question 'would I do this, if I wasn’t afraid' and wait to see the magic. Close your eyes for a moment and ask yourself if everyone in this world vanished… 'would I do this?'

Would I apply for that dance competition if there was no one to see it? If the answer is yes, THEN DO IT. Because let me tell you, THAT is what you love and THAT is where you want to be. And the ONLY THING keeping you from getting there, is a door. And the lock on it, are the judgments of the people around you.

The key? You guessed it… it’s your confidence.

Rob Dial said in a podcast that it is often that we ask ourselves the wrong questions. We need to stop asking ourselves 'what if' and start asking ourselves 'why not'.

So for an example, my friend called me the other day and she was really anxious and scared because she was asking herself what if she would not be accepted into the institution that she wanted to get into, and because of that she was unable to write her essay for her application.

I asked her to do this: Stop asking yourself 'what if I don’t get in' or 'what if I am not good enough' and start asking yourself, 'why SHOULD I get in?' and 'why I AM good enough'.

Because when you ask you brain the question 'what if I am not enough' it’s going to automatically look for all the reasons why you are not good enough. But if you ask yourself 'why I am enough' it will automatically get channeled in a way to look for all the reasons why you are good enough, and more.

As you might have guessed by now, my friend's essay turned out to be great!

So I want to leave you with the thought that the way to stop doubting yourself is to channel your brain in the right direction and simply: Ask yourself the right questions! Every time you doubt yourself, ask yourself 'would I do it if I was not afraid..' and 'why shouldn't I do this..' and wait for your mind to find all the reasons why your life could be better, bigger and more.

Change your questions, change your life.

View more content by Ishani Sen

Discussion Board

Do you think self-doubt holds us back in life?

Rohit Chopra
An incredible article Ishani, this is super-motivating. I specially loved the part about asking ourselves the right questions to take action. There have been so many times in my own life where I've talked myself out of doing the things I wanted toz will overcome that now! 🤩❤️💯
Ishani Sen
Thank you 😄
Chetan Patil
Thank you Ishani for this article. This was really helpful.
Beautifully written!!
Karishma Wani
Its beautifully written!!!!i loved the way explained the things....