How to overcome insecurity
No one feels confident 100 percent of the time. We’re faced with questions about work or running a business that we don’t know the answer to. We get outside our comfort zone when we try a new skill or activity. First dates naturally give us the jitters. It’s all completely normal.
Overcoming insecurity is a challenge each and every one of us must face. In business, relationships and all of life, many of us struggle with self-doubt as we question our skills and abilities. This breeds a negative state, and the fallout can wreak havoc on our work performance and overall well-being. But with the right tools and strategies, we can learn how to overcome insecurity.
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What are insecurities?
People can feel insecure in any area of their lives in which they face uncertainty, but all types of insecurity have a common root: lack of self-esteem. When we don’t love ourselves and have a deep belief in our skills and abilities, we often end up wondering how to work on insecurities in these three areas:
Include lack of confidence about how you look and what others think of you. You may feel anxious in social situations or avoid photos and mirrors. They often lead to unhealthy habits that are used as coping mechanisms.
Cause us to be nervous about giving presentations, answering questions or going for that big promotion. You may think your skills don’t measure up to your colleagues or even suffer from imposter syndrome.
They are extremely common. Feelings that you don’t deserve love or that your partner doesn’t really love you lead to jealousy, arguments and controlling behavior. None of these are healthy for your relationship.
Instead of allowing insecurity to take over your sense of self-confidence, you must learn to face your fears directly. Overcoming insecurity means examining what causes your self-doubt so that you can learn to control your emotions.
What causes insecurity?
In order to understand how to overcome insecurity, you need to know what causes it in the first place. Insecurity is an emotion like any other, and all of our emotions stem from our perspective as well as our beliefs. First, perspective: Research suggests that as much as 40% of our happiness in life derives from our interpretation of recent life events or circumstances. When we fail at achieving a goal, the blow to our self-esteem is often substantial. If feelings of failure remain unresolved, they begin to taint our perception of other life problems. But failure is a matter of our perspective – we can see failures as obstacles, or we can see them as opportunities.
Our beliefs create our world, and that applies to our emotions as well. Seeing failures as opportunities is one belief. Changing our beliefs about the world, ourselves and how we fit in can also help us discover how to stop being insecure. When you take the time to not only get to know yourself – your values, your needs and your limiting beliefs – but to truly accept yourself, you’ll unlock a deep confidence that can only come from self-love.
How to overcome insecurity
Can you learn how to stop feeling insecure? The answer is yes – there are strategies you can use to shift your perspective and your mindset and overcome insecurity once and for all.
1. Face your feelings
One of the most pivotal components of overcoming insecurity is understanding that it’s human nature to want to avoid life’s problems. That is, since problems feel uncomfortable, we are far more likely to ignore the problem, hoping it will self-resolve, than we are to do the proactive work necessary for getting over insecurity. In this manner, mastering how to overcome insecurity as it relates to your professional life is akin to stepping into the pain of nurturing your personal relationships when the going gets tough. Rather than allow the problem to fester, you must acknowledge areas that need changing and implement those changes.
2. Challenge your limiting beliefs
Your beliefs about yourself and your world are key to how to get over insecurities. If you believe that you are shy, vulnerable and not deserving of success, your actions will follow this pattern of limiting beliefs. But if you change your story and begin to tell yourself that you are smart, worthy and confident, you will be. How can you do this? Begin to recognize negative self-talk and replace it with empowering statements rather than limiting ones. Tony Robbins’ Limiting Beliefs Guide will help you combat negative thoughts, reform your beliefs and take massive action against any obstacle.
3. Stop perfectionism
Perfectionism comes from a common limiting belief that we aren’t worthy of love unless everything we do is perfect – and if you can’t let it go, you’ll never learn how to overcome insecurity. Perfectionism is often the result of craving love that we didn’t receive as children. It drives our self-criticism, which further deflates our self-esteem, alienates us from others and creates a no-win cycle of insecurity. But when we let go of perfectionism, we discover that it is actually the lowest standard we can have, because it leaves no room for growth. Allow yourself room to breathe, fail and grow, and you’ll discover valuable lessons about how to get over insecurities.
4. Face your fears
The idea behind learning how to overcome insecurity isn’t to control everything you say, do and feel. Rather, you must learn to face your fears instead of letting your beliefs limit you. You must recognize the fact that even with your insecurities, the safest space is inside you – because that is where your inner strength is hidden away. Even as you commit to overcoming insecurity, give yourself permission to feel insecure. When you commit to embracing insecurity, it becomes a transformative source of information rather than something to be hidden away. It becomes the catalyst for you to get out of your comfort zone, take massive action and face your fears once and for all.
5. Adopt a growth mindset
As Tony says, “Every problem is a gift – without problems we would not grow.” Believing that problems are opportunities to grow, rather than insurmountable obstacles, is called a growth mindset, and it’s essential if you want to learn how to stop being insecure. Instead of feeling like a failure just because we have insecurities, we gain the freedom to view those insecurities as a source of information for our personal and professional growth. Instead of avoiding our insecurities, we learn to ask, “Are my insecurities based in facts, or do they reflect areas of personal growth I need to address?” As you commit yourself to putting aside your fears and utilizing your insecurity as a source of valuable information, you eliminate the “what ifs” associated with avoidance and open the door to opportunity.
6. Shift your perspective
As you commit to learning how to stop being insecure, you’ll discover the importance of balancing your perspective. To balance your outlook, you must both acknowledge your feelings and check them against concrete facts. In other words, without sacrificing your emotional honesty, cultivate the habit of “focusing outwards” on the practical realities of your job.
Consider a professional basketball player who is struggling with uncertainty: they must not only acknowledge the uncertainty and commit to investigating it, but also commit to mastering the practical skills necessary to excel at basketball. As a business owner, the parallel is resonant, since focusing on the “externals” of your day-to-day work life will distract you from your insecurities while you build a skillset that reflects your true aptitude.
7. Be prepared for obstacles
The biggest obstacles come from within when we are learning how to work on insecurities. Even when you’ve identified and overcome your limiting beliefs and stopped harmful patterns like perfectionism, you’ll still face hurdles on your journey. You’ll run into an ex-partner and remember why they made you feel so insecure – or break up with a current partner and find yourself unable to let go of the past. You’ll visit family for the holidays and old, negative self-talk will creep back into your mind. You’ll plateau on your weight loss journey and start feeling bad about your body.
Anything in life that’s worth doing isn’t going to be easy. You’ll always run into roadblocks, but what matters is how you treat them. Do you let them stop you, or do you find a way around, over and through? Do you give up, or do you turn obstacles into opportunities and achieve your goals? When you’re prepared for anything, overcoming insecurity comes naturally.
Stop feeling insecure – and start feeling empowered
At Unleash the Power Within, you won’t just learn how to work on insecurities – you’ll transform your entire mindset.