How to Handle Self-Doubt About Your Dream

Shadows of Doubt

How do we handle self-doubt about our dream, our heart’s desire? This is, interestingly, something that has come up for me in relation to my own dream of becoming a speaker. It seems like I am going through the process of the book with you in relation to following our heart’s desire to fulfill our souls. 

Just like the image to the left, the right side of the image is like our mind when we go into self-doubt. It is filled with “stuff,” chaos, everything going which-way. On the other hand, when we are out of self-doubt, when we are confident in our endeavor, our mind is light and airy, like on the left side of the image.

How do we get to that point? We start by identifying our feelings of doubt. We need to allow them to be, without ignoring or numbing them. As we feel that feeling in the pit of our stomachs, what is going on?

For me, that was sheer terror when I felt that feeling. In looking at it further, I whittled it down again and again until I determined that what I was terrified about was having to speak without my notes, that I would forget what I was talking about, and that I was terrified I would look stupid to the audience, like I had no clue what I was talking about.

Ah, the old ego comes into play. So, I had to ask myself why I am so terrified of looking stupid and I trace it back to repeatedly being told that I WAS stupid, pretty much my entire life. When one hears such words reinforced so much, one begins to believe them.

Now I can look at myself and all the times I was told I was stupid with great compassion. I can hold that child, that adult, in my heart and wrap her with love and compassion. I can tell her that it was a lie, that it was said by troubled people who felt that about themselves, perhaps. But none-the-less, troubled people.

And then, I can look at the others with compassion. Holding us all in a space of compassion allows me to get into my heart instead of my mind. It is at that point that I am able to remember why I am doing this dream in the first place. I remind myself I am becoming a speaker to share my message with people who are struggling, to relay how I got through some very rocky times, and that they can also.

My people are waiting for me, just like your people are waiting for you with whatever gift you have to offer. It becomes about the other person and when it does, your thoughts are off of yourself and your terror, if it is fear which you are feeling. It becomes instead how you can be of service to another. Suddenly, confidence replaces the self-doubt, and you can move forward with your actions in the direction of your dream.

 

 

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How to Handle Self-Doubt About Your Dream

Shadows of Doubt

How do we handle self-doubt about our dream, our heart’s desire? This is, interestingly, something that has come up for me in relation to my own dream of becoming a speaker. It seems like I am going through the process of the book with you in relation to following our heart’s desire to fulfill our souls. 

Just like the image to the left, the right side of the image is like our mind when we go into self-doubt. It is filled with “stuff,” chaos, everything going which-way. On the other hand, when we are out of self-doubt, when we are confident in our endeavor, our mind is light and airy, like on the left side of the image.

How do we get to that point? We start by identifying our feelings of doubt. We need to allow them to be, without ignoring or numbing them. As we feel that feeling in the pit of our stomachs, what is going on?

For me, that was sheer terror when I felt that feeling. In looking at it further, I whittled it down again and again until I determined that what I was terrified about was having to speak without my notes, that I would forget what I was talking about, and that I was terrified I would look stupid to the audience, like I had no clue what I was talking about.

Ah, the old ego comes into play. So, I had to ask myself why I am so terrified of looking stupid and I trace it back to repeatedly being told that I WAS stupid, pretty much my entire life. When one hears such words reinforced so much, one begins to believe them.

Now I can look at myself and all the times I was told I was stupid with great compassion. I can hold that child, that adult, in my heart and wrap her with love and compassion. I can tell her that it was a lie, that it was said by troubled people who felt that about themselves, perhaps. But none-the-less, a troubled person.

And then, I can look at the other with compassion. Holding us all in a space of compassion allows me to get into my heart instead of my mind. It is at that point that I am able to remember why I am doing this dream in the first place. I remind myself I am becoming a speaker to share my message with people who are struggling, to relay how I got through rough times, and that they can also.

My people are waiting for me, just like your people are waiting for you with whatever gift you have to offer. It becomes about the other person and when it does, your thoughts are off of yourself and your terror, if it is fear which you are feeling. It becomes instead how you can be of service to another. Suddenly, confidence replaces the self-doubt, and you can move forward with your actions in the direction of your dream.

 

 

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It’s Okay to Doubt

Shadows of Doubt

If you’re anything like I was, you will have some serious doubt as to the existence of Source. You will have some serious doubt about whether sobriety is worth it. You will want to start drinking because the stuff that surfaces is just not worth dealing with. It’s too painful and the anguish you feel is not justified.

Oh, I’ve been there many times, believe me. I used to go around yelling that sobriety wasn’t worth it, just wasn’t worth what I was feeling, this huge pain from old wounds. It was unbearable and my life was better when I was drinking! Far better!

There are two things about that. The first is that I was forgetting that I was vastly unhappy when I was drinking, and, in fact, drank because I was so unhappy. I was unhappy at a soul level and knew deeply that my life was not right.

The other thing to say is that what I later discovered in sobriety was the peace and joy I looked for in drugs and alcohol, only what I found is a thousand times better than I ever could have imagined. And that’s how worth it, it is to stick with sobriety, no matter what comes up for you emotionally.

Take a look at this picture for a minute. What do you see? What feelings are evoked when you look at the side with the shadows and then you look at the side where there are no shadows? I can tell you that when I look at the side with the shadows, I get a feeling of frenzy, disorganization, chaos. It’s just too much for me with the lines and circles together.

On the other hand, when I look at that side that’s through the gate, the side that’s bathed in light, I see calm, I see smoothness. I see relief. But I have had to go through the chaos, the frenzy, the gate, to get to the other side where my heart is bathed in light.

Look at it this way… As the sun changes its position, the shadows will disappear and the right side of the gate will also be calm. Our souls are like the changing sun… As we make changes in our lives, time will pass, and just as the right side became calm over time, so will the part of us that is currently chaotic and frenzied.

Rats, I was trying to keep this a short post after mine yesterday, which was somewhat lengthy. Now I see I am at 400 words, and I was shooting for 300. If you’ve stuck with me, I hope it is worth it for you.

The point is, it is well worth keeping with sobriety through all the strife. At least, that has been my experience. It is the best thing I have ever done with my life, this keeping sober stuff – the best thing ever. I hope you choose to dance with sobriety.

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Shadows of Doubt – The Plague of Self Doubt

doubt72

Isn’t it interesting that, on the verge of writing the portion of Shadows of Doubt on self-doubt, I am struck with a major case of self-doubt?! It occurs to me that this is a perfect opportunity to describe what the process looks like for me, for self-doubt is something I continue to deal with, even after some time as a sober person.


A friend wrote his thoughts about doubt. I compared myself to him… my words to his words, my thoughts to his thoughts, and judged mine as less than his. I became paralyzed to write the blog. My confidence slipped, which led to a lowered self-esteem. Then, I doubted myself even more, and the spiral continued.


While in the throes of musing about my words for the blog, I came to a realization. I realized that while I bemoan the fact that I compare myself to others because my father always did that to me, I don’t need him any more. I compare myself quite nicely, thank you, without his help. So, the one more appropriate to bemoan is myself.


I have learned to realize that I am powerless over the ability to stop comparing and judging myself, that only God can restore me to sanity. I make the conscious decision to let God help me. Then, I am asked to look at what is behind my habit of comparing myself. Is it fear that I am not good enough? Probably some of that, a lot of that, perhaps.


So I talk with someone about my feelings, my realization. Then I need to become willing to have God remove that habit of comparing myself to others, which involves becoming humble. Once humble, I can ask God to remove my compulsion of comparing myself. I realize I have hurt myself by doing this and I apologize to any I have hurt, including myself, and try to change my behavior.


Changing my behavior involves spot checking myself during the day to identify those times when the compulsion to compare myself crops up and I ask God to remove it at once. Over time, if I do this, God may remove this character flaw. But He removes things in His own time and it may not go away right away if, by sharing about my struggle, it may be of use to others.


Then, I continue to build my relationship with God, and I go help another. And this is how I have learned to live my life… with everything. It gets tiring at times. Yet, there are rewards to this process that are indescribable. And, I have had many compulsions lifted.


I came to the realization last night that my friend and I are writing about two different things. He is writing more generally about the topic, where it takes you, etc., while I am writing because I am telling the story of my book, which is my story. To compare is to compare apples and oranges. Suddenly, I feel free, and able to write my own darn blog!

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