It’s a major problem for so many of us and at the worst of times, it can stop you from doing what needs to be done to achieve your goals.
It’s that annoying voice in your head that loves to remind you of every possible thing that could go wrong, every single reason why something couldn’t work and why you might just not be good enough.
Especially if you’re going out of your comfort zone and putting yourself in these situations that could help you get closer to your goals and dreams, it’s like this little voice in the back of your head that goes “Nope, you can’t do it.”
While it can sometimes seem impossible to silence the voice of your inner critic, I’m going to show you a really simple way to break through self-doubt and turn that voice of “Hell no” into a “Hell yeah!”.
Let’s break it down into 3 steps.
Step 1) Remember that whatever you’re thinking – it ain’t true.
The first step to crushing that self-defeating voice is to realise that whatever you’re thinking and whatever you’re doubting about yourself… it isn’t true.
It’s just your subconscious mind’s way of protecting you by convincing you not to take any risks. That’s because there’s a part of your subconscious mind whose sole purpose, from an evolutionary standpoint, is to keep you alive.
I call that your lizard brain and it’s an inherent flaw in human beings as that part of your subconscious mind will do everything it can to convince you not to take any risks.
And thousands of years ago… that made sense.
Back then, the world was a much more dangerous place so going out and exploring the unknown wilderness or hunting a large animal could lead to dire results. So to ensure that we didn’t take unnecessary risks, we developed this part of our subconscious mind to demotivate us from undertaking risky behaviour.
This part of your subconscious is that voice of self-doubt that convinces you that you aren’t good enough to achieve your goals so that you will avoid the risks that come with even trying.
But in today’s world, apart from feeling a little awkward or uncomfortable, you usually aren’t in any physical danger. Yet, your subconscious mind hasn’t caught up to modern civilisation and so it’s still trying to protect you from harm by convincing you to not to take any risks.
So the next time that voice of self-doubt fires up, start by reminding yourself that it isn’t actually true. It’s just your mind’s way of dealing with a fear of failure by convincing you to not even try.
Step 2) Change your physical state to break your emotional state
Once you’ve acknowledged that it’s just your mind messing with you, you need to snap out of that negative state by doing something known as breaking state.
Just think back to a time when you were in a bad mood and feeling a little low… when your favourite song randomly comes up on Spotify. It’s like as soon as you hear this song you love, you’re suddenly snapped into this positive state of mind.
Or when you watch a motivational video and you suddenly get the urge to climb on your roof and shout out loud like Tarzan.
Or maybe that’s just me.
Regardless, what’s happening in these situations is that your emotional state and how you feel is being impacted by a physical stimuli. That’s because the world around you and your behaviours can literally change the way you feel in any situation.
Just like how your feelings can change your behaviour, the opposite is true too.
So when your subconscious mind gets in a negative spiral to try and convince you against taking risks, you need to break your physical state to snap out of that state of mind.
Splash some cold water on your face, have an ice-cold shower, go for a job, pump out some push-ups, crank up some music or watch a motivational video on YouTube.
How you choose to break your physical state doesn’t matter. Just get up and change something in your physical environment to snap out of the emotional state you’re in.
3) Figure Out Your Reason Why
And third, once you’ve broken out of that state, then you need to get your lizard brain to shut up by giving it a good enough reason to.
Once you’ve broken your physical state, you need to curb your subconscious by giving it a reason for why that risk is worth it.
So when that voice of self-doubt is holding you back from taking action, ask yourself.
Why do you want it?
What do you stand to gain from doing it?
What do you stand to lose if you don’t do it?
What’s at stake if you let that little voice in your head take control of your decisions?
It seems like such a simple factor but so often, we make decisions almost on auto-pilot without really considering what’s actually on the line for us.
That’s one of the biggest reasons why this voice of self-doubt fires up because your subconscious isn’t convinced that the risk you’re taking is worth the potential gain.
That’s just going to be amplified if you aren’t 100% clear on what’s on the line for you. So it’s time to figure out your WHY.
Grab a pen and paper or open up a word document and start answering these questions.
Just spend a few quick minutes, pump out every reason you can think of behind why you even wanted to do the things you’re doubting and then just read over your answers. One by one, read back over every reason you wrote down for why this goal was important for you to achieve.
All you’re doing here is simply training and conditioning your subconscious to realise that the risk IS worth taking after all.
As you continue to do this, as you start to get clearer on what you stand to gain, you’ll find that not only does that voice of self-doubt get softer.
Your voice of self-motivation will get louder.
As your subconscious gets convinced that those risks are worth taking, it’ll actually start to motivate you to go after the very same goals that you were once feeling hesitant to even attempt.
That’s all there is to it – just 3 simple steps. When that voice of self-doubt starts flaring up, realise that it’s just your mind trying to protect you so those doubts aren’t actually true.
Then, break your physical state to snap yourself out of that negative state of mind.
Finally, take a few minutes to get clear on your WHY by writing down exactly what you stand to gain (and lose) from taking those risks.
All you’re doing is convincing your subconscious that the risks you’re afraid of taking are actually worth attempting after all.
Before you know it, that voice of self-doubt will start to be replaced by a voice that goes: