Self-doubt is the anchor that keeps our ships from sailing
“I don’t know if I can continue doing this,” my coaching client told me, as we drank coffee and talked about her past business failure. She had joined a health food network marketing business that she thought had lots of potential, but she had not succeeded yet. “I didn’t know there would be so much disappointment in pursuing my dreams. I have lost confidence that I could possibly be successful,” she shared.
“Failures are not the end of a dream; they are lessons you have to learn,” I responded. “Failures are kinks that you need to work out before you can grow. Think about your business failure. What is something that you learned from it? What could you do differently next time?”
“Well, I guess I could invite extra people to my presentations, so that I have a better result.”
“Yes, and remember that you are just starting. It will take some time to get momentum, but you will get there. For now, a small group is a perfect opportunity to practice your presentation with the few people that do show up,” I told her.
“I had not thought about it that way,” she said. “You are right. A small group is a perfect opportunity for me to get better at my presentations. Thank you!”
We have all felt disappointed at times when pursuing a new career venture, a dream, or a life goal. I personally know what it is like to fail my way to the top. I have been disappointed many times, but I have learned to pick myself up quickly. Here are four tips that will help you manage self-doubt resulting from a failure.
“Rome wasn’t built in a day.”
As entrepreneurs, we assume that success happens overnight. Why not? We are passionate about our service or product, so everybody else should be too, right? The reality is that success requires time. Give yourself time to grow. We make a mistake when we believe success happens overnight. Studies show that it could take three to five years, sometimes even longer, to achieve success in a new business. Although there is no exact timeline for success, I believe that you become successful when you make the choice to dedicate time to a life goal or dream.
Remember a time when you were successful.
I know it’s hard to stay positive when you have failed, but you must remember the times when you were successful. Know that you can win because you have won before. Write down your WINS. Ask family and friends to remind you of the times when you reached your goals. We are so critical of ourselves; we focus so much on our failures that we forget about our past triumphs.
“Love Yourself,” says the motivational speaker and author, Louise Hay. In the past, I did not understand that this phrase is the answer to many of our problems. When we love ourselves, we treat ourselves with dignity and respect. Think about someone that you love—perhaps your child, husband, or wife. Would you mentally abuse them? No. Then why would you abuse yourself? When you love yourself, you speak kind words to yourself. You believe in yourself and know that you are worthy and capable of acquiring your dreams. Be as kind to yourself as you are to others.
Fail, fail, and fail some more.
Remember that when you fail it’s a sign that you are trying. The detours that you encounter on the road to success will eventually put you on the right track. Failure is part of growth. Embrace it, learn from it, and move on. As I continue to fail, I am proud of my personal growth. Failure has taught me that there is no one way to get to my final destination. Dare to fail. Dare to learn. Dare to grow.
As I fail forward, I realize that in life we must experience disappointment so that we can not only learn from our failures, but also appreciate our successes more. It’s a win-win because it teaches us so much about ourselves and our strength. Expect disappointment on your journey to your becoming. Expect success as well. Love yourself, and know that you are worthy of treating yourself with dignity and respect. As you do, you set the mood for others to do the same, and you also gain the stamina to continue to move forward even when all hope seems gone. Keep your chin up, beautiful, and persevere! A day will come when you will look back at your stumbles and failures and be glad you never gave up. Until next time, Believe. Change. Become.
Sending many blessings and love your way!