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Use These Four Tips to Overcome the Fear That You're Not Good Enough

Use These Four Tips to Overcome the Fear That You're Not Good Enough
Am I good enough?

…is a question many women have asked themselves at some point during their life, whether in their careers or relationships or elsewhere. I know I certainly have. We know the answer to the question is a wholehearted, unquestionable, and unabashed "YES," but somewhere along the way, we let doubts creep in and obscure our thinking.

The question is why? We know what we are capable of, we know our strengths and talents, we know we can do a lot of things/jobs that we put our hearts and minds in to (even start our own businesses!), but yet we doubt ourselves. Whatever the reason or reasons that got us to that place, we need to work through the doubts and rise above those thoughts.

I draw inspiration from multiple sources; nature, family, friends, people in general, books, art, and the list goes on. You may draw inspiration from your faith, family, children, accomplishments, travel, or work, and it is incredibly important to have these sources to draw from or to turn to. They remind us of our best selves that we may have forgotten or even consider "not that big a deal." They give us that boost of self-confidence that we could all do with every now and then.

Here is a collection of tips and tools to keep in your toolbox to draw on when we feel that question coming to the surface or forefront.

[Related: How to Pivot and Slay Your Way Into Your Inner CEO Power]

1) An accomplishment journal.

We all maintain to-do lists, whether for office, home, and even social life, but do we actively record and reflect on our accomplishments? Maybe some of us do, because that’s part of the performance and engagement culture at work, but maybe not. Also, think about how we are recording that accomplishment; are we focusing on the outcome only? Or are we focusing on the skills we learned and knowledge we gained in achieving the outcome?

We could even grade ourselves to see how much growth we experienced from one accomplishment to another. For example:

This was a good accomplishment because it had high visibility, but did I learn as much? Maybe not. However, in such-and-such instance, I was pushed beyond my comfort zone, and while it was tough and stressful, I learned all of this; I feel I am more knowledgeable in that area and I made a big impact.

Reflection is an important part of maintaining that journal. We should be going back over the months and years to remind ourselves of how far we have come and how much we have grown. We could even use some of these accomplishments and their resulting impacts to develop our resumes. It's also important to remember it need not be related only to work.

2) Ask yourself: "Who is my biggest fan?"

This could be a parent, a friend, a loved one, a professor, a coworker, a mentor – typically someone who knows you, who you trust, and who has your best interests at heart. So what if they are a little biased in your favor? We are not looking for absolute objectivity here - we are looking for reminders of why we are good enough and more.

Try talking to the person about the dilemma which prompted the dreaded question to surface and ask them for honest feedback. This is a great opportunity for affirmation, but make sure to listen for areas of learning and improvement. You can bet they will give you multiple reasons why you are good enough which you didn’t think of, dismissed, or took for granted.

[Related: Advance Your Career with a Sponsor]

3) Know your non-negotiables.

We are all on life’s journey, and while we may not know exactly what we want, we should know exactly what we do not want. Some of us enjoy experiential learning, and while there is nothing wrong with that, it helps to have developed an inner voice that can serve as our guardrails and blind spots.

4) Ask yourself: "What do I have to lose?"

You spent a few days or weeks researching and learning about topics that you could potentially be asked about, you did several mock interviews in anticipation of being selected for an interview, you reached out to people in your network seeking advice and maybe recommendations – and you did not get the job.

So? You learned new subject matter, you got more interviewing experience (a muscle we all need to keep using to remain strong), and you deepened your network. Look for the positives in your scenario, even if the outcome did not turn out as you desired. The most important thing is that you showed up and gave it your best.

If we think we are not good enough, it's likely something that we're projecting through our thoughts, actions, or words, and it is even more likely that it will be perceived as such. Know and remember that we are human and we may have doubts and insecurities, but we can overcome them and accomplish great things.

[Related: A Year-Round Guide to Self-Advocacy]


Chantele Pereira is a strategic and driven leader who is passionate about leading people and an advocate for mentoring. She is an accomplished audit, assurance, and forensic professional. 

Have more questions? Follow up with the expert herself.


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