The advice of believing in yourself is absolutely a bunch of BS. Yeah, I said it! Yet another example of superficial non-substantive fodder for Instagram and Facebook pages. You know what I’m talking about—the type of crap your favorite Aunt posts daily with a picture of flowers or landscapes.
Ok with that out of the way, let me clarify. Yes, self-belief is absolutely essential as fuel for success, but the empty direction is trash. What does “believe in yourself” even mean?
In a world where we are bombarded with imagery and influences that make us doubt ourselves every day. Is simply saying ‘believe in yourself” enough to combat the evil forces of Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and your least favorite cousin, who all seem to be more successful than you?
The answer, a resounding, NO.
it’s not just enough to say believe in yourself. You need tools to help you. You need to actively put work into maintaining your sense of self-worth in a culture that constantly chips away at it.
Ok, so now that we understand that we have a problem, let’s talk about some solutions. That’s the whole point in this blog. Simply saying believe in yourself without having some tools is just empty, superficial rhetoric that provides no benefit.
This one comes courtesy of Michelle Taylor Willis via the Business & Bourbon Podcast episode Selling Ads with the M.T.W. Remember that little voice inside you that is always there. You know the one that rears its head when you scroll Instagram and you see that 22-year-old driving a Lamborghini or the former peer’s LinkedIn notification of a job promotion? Why not me? Am I not smart enough? I’m not talented enough. Yeah, that voice.
You have to, as Michelle puts it, “talk yourself into success,” just like that voice talks you out. You need to intentionally talk yourself into success. You are smart, you are talented, you are successful. Speak it into existence.
Turn That Shit Off
Ok, this may sound strange from a guy who has built a brand using the power of social media but TURN IT OFF. I don’t spend much time on social media platforms that don’t translate to business. I mute content or creators that I think don’t benefit me and my focus on those platforms. Lastly, limit your exposure. Do you really need to check social as many times a day as you do? Stay focused and limit negative influences and distractions.
Why You’re Awesome Album
This comes courtesy of Julie Holly. Julie blew my mind with this new idea for self-worth and self-confidence. The next time you get that positive email, text, DM or comment, screenshot it! Screenshot it and keep them in an album on your phone. Mine is called, “Why I’m A Badass.” This is not something for growing your ego or narcism, it’s a tool to use as a reminder. Those voices of doubt and negativity are unrelenting. When we feel those things, we don’t remember or connect with the positive moments or reasons we shouldn’t doubt ourselves. This is a tool to help reconnect you and inspire you.
This has been key for me. Looking good helps you feel good about yourself. Every day when I get that good workout in, not only does it help with cardiovascular health, but it triggers endorphins. These endorphins are chemicals in the brain that make us feel good. They make us happier. Every day you should do something, not just a couple of times a week. Those negative influences don’t take a day off. Why should you?
Believe In Someone Or Something Bigger Than You
I’ll be the first to admit. This is one I struggle with. You see, the path to Entrepreneurial success means you have to be cognizant of your ability to choose and control outcomes. You must be the Master of your destiny. Sometimes, that can conflict with the concept of something bigger than you, whether that be the mission or the mantra.
It’s kind of like the difference in mentality between a football player or a long-distance runner. The football player is playing a role in a greater mission, the team's mission. The runner's success is solely on their efforts and how they run the race. Entrepreneurship can be solitary like the runner, which makes it difficult and a little contradictory at times.
That said, if you can tap into belief in something beyond you, it can fuel you through those tough times. Maybe it is an ethos, mission, or supernatural. Whatever it is for you, it could help you when your belief in self wavers.
I hope that one of these specific tactics helps but if not, cool, go find your own. The lesson in this is that simply saying believe in yourself is not enough to win. You must have tools and take specific actions to maintain the confidence and self-worth it takes to compete in our world and protect your mental health.