My friend and I were talking about how we often feel like we're not good enough, not smart enough, not knowledgeable enough, and how we're always doubting ourselves. Ever since I can remember, I have had a constant problem of feeling like I wasn't enough which led me to not doing things, which led me to nowhere. And now I'm starting to realize that many other people are in the same boat as me, and this isn't something I'm alone in. I'm also starting to realize that while I may not feel like I'm "good enough," I will never accomplish anything if I continue doing nothing. During my first month of blogging, I kept doubting myself.
But I realized that this is what has stopped me from accomplishing things in the past - thinking I'm not good enough at something because there's someone better out there. There is always going to be someone out there who is better than you at something. The solution is to not compare your beginning to their middle; they've probably been working towards their goals longer than you have, and besides that, everyone is on their own journey. We all have different short and long term goals and what we want to accomplish.
(It's a super lengthy post, we had a really long conversation about it.)
1. There will never be a perfect time to start. Most of us are always waiting until that perfect moment to come so we can start on our dreams or goals, but that moment will never come. Start anyway. You may be bad at it at first, but you keep going, you're going to be better and be glad you didn't give up. Most people give up halfway and/or when they realize it's going to be hard work and give into their fears and doubts, and that's why they weren't successful. Perfection doesn't exist.
2. Accept that you will never know everything about something. You don't have to be an expert on a subject to have an opinion; it's taken me so long to accept that, and I still struggle with it. But what we have to realize is that we are constantly growing, learning, and changing. No one knows everything from to back and every little detail about what they're talking about, and no one expects that out of you. Share what you do know because it may help someone and they will thank you for it.
3. Fear is normal. We are all afraid and want to make excuses to rationalize why we can't, instead of believing that we can. Instead of avoiding and running away from our fears, we should face it and learn to work with it. There's always going to be the failure - so what if you don't succeed at first? That doesn't make you a failure. It's not going to be the end of the world. Instead you will gain valuable insight and knowledge (and you can apply that knowledge later on) which will help you in the future.
4. Realize that not everyone will like you. Just because one person doesn't like you does not mean that everyone else you will ever meet will dislike you too. “You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world and there's still going to be someone who hates peaches”. – Dita Von Teese When you realize that it's not your job to please everyone you'll meet, you'll be happier and better off.
5. Think of 5 positive things you like about yourself. Are you good at baking? Do you like to volunteer? Are you really hard working? Are you always there for others when they need you? Whatever it is, be proud of that. Remember that you are your own person and there is no one else like you. "Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." – Oscar Wilde
6. Just do it. If you want to be a runner, start running 10 minutes a day and add to that as you go on. If you want to learn a new language, learn 10 new characters every day and soon you'll find that you can hold a conversation in that language. Everyone who is successful at what they're doing has had to start somewhere to get to where they are. So when in doubt, just start and you'll be surprised by how far you get.
* This post was inspired by my blogging experience so far; I had a lot of fears starting out about having a blog like what if my writing isn't good enough, what other people will think of me (and what if they don't like me), etc. but I realized that those things don't matter. What matters is that I enjoy blogging and would like to continue blogging and while I'm not going to be that great at blogging when I first start out, and I'm okay with that. Perfection doesn't exist, and I'm not going to let fear stop me from doing something I want to do. And you shouldn't let fear of feeling that you might not be good enough stop you either. (P.S. You are good enough. If no one has told you that recently, I'll be the one to tell you. You can accomplish whatever you put your mind and energy on. It'll take lots of time and effort, but you'll get there.I believe in you.)
- Has there ever been a time when you stopped doing something because you believed you weren't good enough? Did you regret not doing whatever that was?
- Do you have any additional advice or tips?