Have you ever questioned yourself when tough times of unemployment approached? I’ll admit I certainly have.
When facing unemployment, we can lose our self-confidence, and the belief in ourselves can diminish greatly. Altogether, we can doubt ourselves.
Because self-doubt can negatively affect us, we must recognize it when it comes – and manage it.
He posted the following comment (thanks again for your comment, Mr. Frank!), which served as the inspiration for this post:
“Long-term unemployment is so tough, but keep fighting the good fight. And always keep believing in yourself.”
His comment encouraged me but also left me wondering: Do I still believe in myself?
Back on Track: The self-doubt emotion comes to us in several forms: rejection, lack of control, and loss.
When this voice comes speaking to us (i.e., nagging us) and muttering we’re not good enough, we must speak back to it and fight it like we fight the voice of discouragement.
My Self-Doubt Example
I informed you in previous posts about my long-term unemployment situation.
A few months into the beginning of my unemployment period, I questioned myself in terms of my abilities and past decisions over and over again. My top questions were:
- Will I ever enter the field that I studied for? Should I have studied something else?
- I can’t secure a job offer. Where have I gone wrong as an interviewee?
When a significant amount of time passed, I mulled over the following questions through an honest assessment:
- Am I possibly unemployable?
- This sums up all of my questions combined: Am I good enough?
I heard so much about the long-term unemployed being unemployable and rusty in terms of skills and questioned whether this is true. (Note: Courage assists us in moving forward when negativity is constantly thrown at us.)
Because of countless rejections, I doubted my ability to land a job. Thus, I am all too familiar with the voice of self-doubt when it whispers: You are a failure.
Through the mulling, I experienced an internal debate. One voice said, “Just stop and forget everything now.” But the other voice spoke against it and said “I must keep on believing that I am still valuable as my value does not come from my employment status in this life. Go on. Refocus. Believe in yourself.”
Over time, I realized there’s no point in questioning my abilities or past decisions because there’s nothing I can do about them now. I truly believe I am where I am supposed to be at this time in my life.
Why doubt and beat myself up over past decisions?
Why should you?
Suggestions for Dealing with Self-Doubt
Drowning out the voice of self-doubt is not an easy process but a worthy one. So, from a practical standpoint, I manage my self-doubt in three ways:
- Go On and Surrender: Although I had no control over this hardship coming about, I possess control over my response to it. Though hard, I had to be honest with myself and let it go. I am one of the long-term unemployed and haven’t been successful in securing a job offer at this point. I still have a strong desire for employment but have accepted this uncomfortable situation by faith – believing things will get better.
- Fight Back with Truth: I must fight the voice of self-doubt with the Word of Truth (some may prefer affirmations and mantras or both). I cannot believe these lies: I am a failure, and I am not good enough. No, I must counteract these lies with the truth instantly and believe. Talk back to this voice from a positive standpoint. Argue with it. Defend yourself.
- Learn and Grow: I learned not to be angry about my hardship situation but use it as a learning experience. Had I made different decisions, I still might have ended up in this same situation as I don’t control the big picture of my life (God does). I must do what I can to improve myself. Things will work out in the ways they’re supposed to.
From Me to You: Don’t beat yourself up during your unemployment period. Learn, Grow, and Become Better. Believe in yourself. You are one STRONG person!
Have you been dealing with unemployment self-doubt? How do you manage it? Share your methods with me.