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How To Believe In Yourself When Doubts Creep In

I wish someone would have explained to me that sometimes following your dreams and passion is challenging. I have this story in my head that if I am on the 'right' path, everything will fall into alignment with ease. This has not been the case. Most days it feels like no matter how far I've come, I still have a long road ahead.

Here are my six go-to strategies to help ease the discomfort of doubt on hard days:

1. Honor how you feel

I think it's ok to question and doubt the process. It only blocks us of we pretend we don't have doubts. Name your doubts out loud. They lose power that way.

2. Ride out the wave of doubt

I walk by the ocean enough to know it is never the same beach twice. Tides, weather, & sea life constantly shift the water and waves making uncertainty the only certainty. If I wait long enough, a rough, choppy day morphs into stillness and calm.

3. Listen to your heart

When I'm having a hard, doubt day, sometimes I can't hear my heart's guidance. I have made a promise to myself I will not make any rash decisions until I can get clear directions from within. My heart will tell me when to call it, until then, I have to keep going.

4. Speak kindly to you

This takes awareness and practice, but is so beautiful when I remember. Sometimes the best I can offer myself is this, "I know you may never change how you feel, how you look, or the expectations you have for yourself, but I love you. I understand why you are this way (therapy helped with this) and it's okay to feel like you can't love yourself today. I love you anyway."

5. Ignore negative mind-chatter

Again, this takes awareness and practice. The goal for me with this is to acknowledge it while not fighting it. On good days, negativity swims right past me, on bad, I try to be with it and myself to the extent I am able. On my worst days, I just throw in the towel and accept I can't unlock the spiral. Those are the days I have to remind myself I won't always feel like this.

6. Trust the Universe

When I'm really angsty and unsure, I have to hand it over to the Universe (or however a higher power manifests for you). The reality is my dreams might manifest differently than my expectations of them. Maybe that's the point. I suspect we rarely dream as big as we should. My dreams may look different because they will be more expansive, more adventurous than I could ever imagine.

So, don't fret too much if something seems beyond grasp. Try to be grateful because what's actually in store for you is so much better.

Inward & Onward,

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Thank you for reading!


Mar 06, 2023

Diana...your graphic truly hits at the heart of self-awareness and believing in one's self when doubt sets in. You sharing your own personal struggles is immensely helpful to me and your readership. Over the next month, I'll be settling in on a location and date for a summer mission trip to a remote area of Appalachia. Even though military deployments have taken me to far away places -- this is a different environment, different time, and a different me. It means a lot that you and your readers can all identify in some way with this -- but we all manage to move forward in our own way. Thank you so much for these posts -- they mean …

Diana DeVaul
Mar 07, 2023
Replying to

I’m so humbled by this. You are taking steps to follow your heart in the service of others. Truly inspiring! I can’t wait to see how it all unfolds and the lessons you learn. 🙏🏻

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