Staying Positive in the Face of Doubt

Get a nice drink and a snack, sit down, learn a little more about gaining a postive mindset, start being proud of yourself and remember that you.are.enough. More than enough in fact! This might do you the world of good whenever those doubts creep in.

I am a natural worrier and an extremely sensitive person. I struggled throughout my school years and a fair bit of my adult life due to this. I never felt good enough, and to be honest, sometimes I still don’t. I’ve experienced major highs and major lows in life (who hasn’t?!), things that definitely could have destroyed me. I naturally doubt myself a ton, and it’s taken a lot of work on myself to really overcome this, and turn the things that I always saw as flaws, as negative parts of myself into strengths. Now, I’m pretty much always at peace with myself, I try to love all of myself too. I attempt to remain positive in the face of doubt. I want you to feel this too. Please read on, and take note of what you can do to possibly help yourself. 

Disclaimer: I’m obviously not a professional, my words are not gospel truth, but I found these things helped me loads, and I’d like to hope they’d help you too. 

I’m not going to say that this is an easy or natural mindset to adopt. It’s really not, especially when you’re using to thinking badly of yourself and you usually let your doubts get to you. In the past, when I ‘failed’ or when I felt doubtful, it would knock me down and I wouldn’t get back up for a while. I was not positive. I’d get so upset. After all, I want to achieve, I truly care about what others think of me and I am so sensitive to their opinions. This is a really toxic environment to put myself in, but it’s so easy to get stuck there. So, how do you get out?

  • I follow the most positive, self-love promoting, supportive, encouraging people I can find. My Instagram used to be a place which, when scrolling, inadvertently made me look down on myself. Comparison is rife these days, and so, so easy to do. My feed really at times felt like one endless scroll of people that I could never look like, never be as successful as, never be a free and happy as. Not really a positive environment, and I got a little fed up of it.  I discovered people whose aim is to inspire and help you be at peace with yourself, and begin to love who you are, remaining strong and positive. I followed them, more and more of them, and I chose to unfollow anyone who didn’t make me feel good about myself. Now you might class this as just avoiding my issues, but to be honest, I realised that following them never even added any value to my life anyway, so I don’t miss it. I’m not jealous of those people anymore anyway. Of course, increasing my mindset as a whole has helped with this too, I don’t feel the same way now when I scroll. Now, instead of letting the successes of others bring me down, I celebrate them, because I’ve got a lot of successes of my own! We are all on this conveyor belt of life together, we might as well make it a happier place for each other. If you head to my instagram – @https://www.instagram.com/amyollerton/?hl=en you can have a look at who I’m following, there’s too many to list!
  • I began to journal. When you were a kid, did you keep a diary? Did you write down all your secrets, your thoughts and feelings? I did, but really it was a very negative space. I used my diaries to rant about all the things that made me angry and upset, all the boys I liked who would never like me back, all those teenage thoughts. It was an outlet for my pain, and it did provide some release when I got really mad at my parents, but I feel like I actually wallowed in it more than let it free me. Journaling reminds me a little of this, because you write all your secrets, thoughts and feelings, some negative. But, you use that writing to release them, free them, let them flow through you, and turn the negatives and doubts into positives.
    This method of ‘self-care’ has been pivotal for me to be able to think positively in the face of doubt. I make lists of what I like about myself and what makes me strong. I write about what my aims and goals are, thinking about making them a reality, and list all the things I have already achieved in life. There are tons of journal prompts on Pinterest that can help you. Taking the events that could cause negativity, writing them down, using that time to reflect on them and then think about how they can actually positively affect your life, that’s a key to ensuring a better mindset. Eventually, my brain does this automatically. Sometimes I find myself slipping back a little — but I’m only human, and my journal is there.
  • I fill my life with the things, people, activities and items that I love. I class my home as my safe haven. It’s filled with my treasured items, pictures, my cozy blankets and dressing gown, my fridge(!), and my biggest love, Adam. When I feel doubtful or low, I use my safe haven to remind myself of everything I have, and it helps me to think logically, positively again. I might go and read my favourite print (you bring a little bit of sparkle everywhere you go). I might go and check on my plants – you may have read that I’m a proud plant mum. I might look at my photos of my family and friends. 
  • Activity wise, when I’m feeling low, I like to take time out and dance. I don’t mean serious dancing, I mean blast my ‘badass’ Spotify playlist and jiggle about, letting the powerful lyrics wash over me. Music is such a massive thing for me, I have a playlist for every mood. I also love to go and run a deep hot bubble bath, and just soak for a couple of hours, my ‘beautiful songs’ playlist in the background, and some sort of book to read. Walking also helps me clear my mind to come back to being positive. Getting that fresh air, and freedom away from whatever is causing me doubts, letting the thoughts flow and then be carried away, is valuable. Especially when I have my sister-in-laws dogs with me. Fur babies bring me so much joy!
  • I talk to my favourite people, my crew, the ones who always big me up and help me to see the positives, but also can provide me with constructive advice when I need it. Adam, my Mum, my best-friend Asher, my sister-in-law Hannah, my Ulverston girls, the writing community on Twitter! All these people help me, and always will. Use your family, your friends, your partner, your crew to help you!
  • This one took a little while to make a habit, but now I do it without thinking. I got this idea off of @victorianiamph on Instagram, and honestly it worked for me. I wrote a few questions down on a piece of paper with the title ‘Every Morning’:
    – Name something you like about yourself.
    – Name something that makes you proud of yourself.
    – Name three people who make you happy.
    – Think of something you’ve got to look forward to.
    Underneath, I wrote: You got this, you are enough.
    I stuck this on my mirror, so that I see it every morning. I answer each question, and try to give different answers every day. I look in that mirror, and boost myself up, creating a positive mindset for the day. I get it, it sounds cheesy, but it works.

Those are a few of the things that I found completely changed my outlook and boosted my view of myself up. I’m now so much more positive, and I don’t let much knock me down. I do allow myself to get upset when I need to, crying to me is very cathartic and as I said — I am a sensitive soul! But once I get that out of my system, I work toward bigging myself up again, and turning the negatives into positives. I’m sure you can too. Be proud of your achievements, be proud of who you are. Life isn’t long enough to spend it being doubtful!

Published by Amy Ollerton

Hi! I'm Amy—a professional copy editor and proofreader living in the beautiful Scottish Highlands. I provide friendly, personalised services that boost writing while retaining the author's unique style and voice. I write a little myself, shown through my blog. Alongside my work, I read books, enjoy baking, and explore the Highlands with my partner and my dog, Lula. If you've ever any editing queries, feel free to get in touch!

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