Those 5 Pesky Habits That Keep You in The Cycle of Doubt

Note from Michelle:  This article was in one of my favorite newsletters today.  If you aren’t subscribed yet, stop by her site and sign up.  She really “gets” what women in business are going through and is great at targeting exactly what’s in the way and how to get past it in an authentic, honest with yourself kind of way.  She’s one of those coaches who I’m almost certain can read minds.

Article by Laura Howard West of the Center for Joyful Business.

As a business mentor coach to solo-entrepreneur women, I work with women in all types of services businesses. You get excited talking about new marketing ideas, income opportunities and creative ways to package your programs and create products.

Then something happens.

The excitement stalls out. The inspiration drains from your body, and you can’t remember what you were so pumped up about. What happened?

Here are 5 Habits that can sneak up on you and pull you into the Cycle of Doubt.

It starts out as a small quiet voice, and suddenly it grabs you by the ankles and pulls you in – leaving you feeling small, stuck and very frustrated.

Want to see different results in your business? You’ve got to notice your everyday pesky habits and change the ones that are not supporting your success, and then shift to something different.

1. You focus on what others think or what others are doing This is one of the most common for women entrepreneurs. You tend to worry too much about what someone else is doing, feeling jealous of her success, and then turning it against yourself. You start feeling like you aren’t doing enough, you can’t possibly ever do enough, and it isn’t as good as what your colleague is doing.

At first, it can be inspiring to look at programs and products other business owners are creating, but you have to be careful and notice when the energy starts turning from curiosity and inspiration to feelings of self-doubt. Just by being aware, you can catch it in mid-stream before you’re pulled into the Cycle of Doubt and find it hard to get back out.

2. Focus on what’s NOT working in your business

“I haven’t made much money this month.” I haven’t broken six figures yet. I haven’t got my degree/certification.” “I didn’t redo my website this summer.” And on and on it goes. The things that didn’t get done. The more you focus on what isn’t working, the more you are putting yourself in vibrational alignment with feeling less than, things not working, things not getting done. This is SO not a place you can create success in your business from.

Reality checks are good. Asking the questions: Where are you with your goals? How much money is coming in and going out?

But keeping your focus on where you fall short isn’t going to inspire you to call the next potential client. At any given time, there ARE things that are working in your business. A new contact. New subscribers. Sales. Opportunities. Ideas. Celebrate what is working. Appreciate where the joy and success is flowing into your business. It will shift your energy. Then you can shift to more empowering, confidence-building thoughts. And your possibilities will shift!

3. You only dabble in marketing.

If you only do a little bit of marketing and you are attracting the kind of success you want, then all is well. On the other hand, if you are like most entrepreneurs, you are wishing for more clients, more sales, more enrollments. If this is you, then look at your marketing efforts. Just because you have a blog doesn’t mean it’s helping you create visibility if you never write anything. Speaking once or twice a year isn’t going to help you build your list quickly. Wishing you have clients isn’t going to get you the clients.

If you want different results, then it’s time to embrace marketing using your Authentic Marketing Style. Focus on one area of marketing and give yourself full permission to have fun, be creative and stand out. Most of all, be consistent and market frequently and memorably. Feel confident that you are taking inspired action toward your dreams.

4. You’re over committing.

Are you running around marketing all over the place doing a little of this and a little of that? Just because there is a new marketing idea doesn’t mean you have to do it now. Being in overwhelm doesn’t give you results. You just get tired and frustrated. That opens the door to doubt and low self-esteem. When you feel down, it’s really hard to write creative articles and make calls for potential speaking engagements, isn’t it?

Take back your power. The universe loves to deliver us opportunities. If you have focused energy, then you’ll get focused opportunities in alignment with what you really want. If you have scattered energy, then you’ll get scattered, piecemeal type results.

5. You think you can’t have the empire of your dreams, so you don’t even try.

You have a desire for a successful business, but you’ll get to it one day. That one day never happens, and a year later you are still in the same place with the same small disappointment in your business. I can just hear you sigh right now. “Oh, when will it be different?” It’s not going to grow without you committing to the growth.

If you take one step a day, then just imagine where you’ll be in a year. Definitely further along and closer to your success than you were if you waited.

Which one of these habits resonates with you? All of them?

Are you ready to make a change? Be conscious and shift for change. When you change, your business will change. What are you going to commit to today?

Written by Laura Howard West, Center for Joyful Business,  © Copyright 2010. All rights reserved. Laura West is an award-winning online entrepreneur and president of The Center for Joyful Business.

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  1. You know, it really bugs me when someone crawls into my brain and steals my thoughts. I’m familiar with all 5 of her points, I’m sorry to say. On the days I overcome them, I’m on top of the world. On the days that Self-Doubt gains the upper hand, I might as well stay in bed. Thankfully, I’m reducing the self-doubt by managing my focus and time better to do the things that I need to do in order for things to go forward. It’s not easy, but I’m seeing the rewards. That makes it more than worth it. :) Thank you for posting this, Michelle!
    Lisbeth Tanz recently posted… 31 Days to Building a Better Blog ChallengeMy Profile

    1. I felt the same way reading it. It’s so easy to get stuck on these. But there are definitely rewards when we can break the habits. :)

  2. You are right about doubt and low self-esteem when everybody is jumping into everything for marketing and thinking that it will work. It’s the same in social media marketing, it works for few business and doesn’t work for others. So, it does not mean that you have to have facebook and twitter account even if it doesn’t work for you.

    1. It’s important to choose the right marketing strategies for your business. And sometimes it can help to get some support with certain strategies like social media to really make sure to leverage it well. :) Choosing one or two good strategies that work for you (even if they aren’t social media or aren’t even online at all!) is a better approach that to just jump into everything, because the results aren’t going to happen if there’s not a good plan in place. I agree!

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