My Struggle with Self Doubt

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Hi guys!

Remember me? I know, I know – I always say that. πŸ˜‰

So I know I typically write about uplifting, fun things including recipes, baby updates and my life with a toddler but, today I want to talk about something I’ve been struggling with for the last 6 months to a year. And that, my friends, is self doubt

Actually, I can’t say that I’ve only been struggling with this for a short period; it’s something I’ve struggled with as far back as I can remember. Self doubt is defined as, “lack of confidence in oneself and one’s abilities.”. But to me, I personally feel like it’s not having the ability to allow myself to be confident (does that even make any sense?). In my mind, I am confident in my abilities but the self doubt suppresses said confidence and doesn’t allow for me to push myself to my fullest potential. Hopefully this isn’t just coming out as gibberish and I apologize if so!

Oh geez, there I go apologizing again. If you know me personally, you’ll know that saying sorry for anything and everything is a horrible habit that I’ve had for many years. I’m ALWAYS apologizing for things that don’t even deserve an apology or things that aren’t even my fault – so silly, right? This drives my husband bonkers and to be quite honest, it drives me crazy too! I know it makes me come off as weak and lacking confidence and it’s something that I will continue to work on day to day.  Does anyone else out there have this same problem? 

My self doubt has been front and center in my mind lately. If you have followed me for a while, you will know that a little over a year ago, I launched my own makeup artistry business, bloom. – Southern Beauty. And if you’ve noticed, I haven’t done a darn thing with it. Ugh. I kicked it off with a bang, I bought my makeup kit, had cards made, launched all of my social sites and website and started bringing on clients. I even picked up a gig doing the makeup for 20 models for an Anthropologie Spring Fashion show. I received wonderful feedback and I loved every second of what I was doing. Now, my makeup kit sits untouched, my website is no longer active and my cards are buried away. So why did I stop? 

I started comparing myself to other makeup artists, makeup gurus on Instagram and the stress of keeping up with current trends. I allowed myself to be scared off, in a way, from doing something I am good at, passionate about and completely in love with. I allowed other people to affect me so much that I started to shy away from my business. I launched bloom. as a way to do something I truly enjoyed, to help women feel their best and to feel like I was contributing to my family. I let the self doubt creep in and allowed myself to be my own worst enemy.

“Why would anyone want ME to help THEM?”

“I’m not as good as XYZ.”

“What if people aren’t happy with the end result?”

It’s embarrassing. I feel like I’ve failed myself. I feel like I’ve failed those closest to me who actually believe in me and who have pushed me from the very start. 

Self doubt has kept me from kicking my blog up a notch and really giving it my all. I get on myself daily about keeping up with all of the wonderful things fellow bloggers and friends are doing. Why can’t I just push myself to do the same? My husband is my biggest cheerleader and is often feeding me ideas and wonderful inspiration; I appreciate and listen but I don’t put things into motion. Charlee pretty much begs to do more “Cooking with Charlee” videos and people have told me just how much they enjoyed those videos but yet, I haven’t made any lately. 

My fear of failure and my self doubt is getting in the way of doing things I truly enjoy and pursuing things that I am actually good at. This is an open letter to MYSELF in hopes that writing this and “putting it out there” will help push me in the right direction. 

I see SO many women, men, bloggers, business owners and SAHM’s with side jobs that I look up to and there’s absolutely no reason I can’t join the ranks of them.

The only person keeping me from doing so is myself. 

(Thank you for listening and I want you to know that I appreciate each and every one of you who follow along here. You all mean more than you know. )

xoxo, 

Ashleigh 

 

18 comments

  1. Tiffany Haywood says:

    Hi Ashleigh!! I feel like I could have written this post myself. I have always struggled with letting go of the doubt that most times has no truth to it at all. In everything I pursue there is usually a period where I have to convince myself to do it. Like you, I work really hard to overcome it and I am making progress – it just takes time. Thanks so much for sharing your story – it helps to know I’m not alone.

    • Ashleigh says:

      Hi Tiffany!

      Thanks for your kind comments. It definitely helps to know that I’m not alone in my feelings (although I’d rather no one feel this way!).

      I appreciate you reading my post!

      xo,
      Ashleigh

  2. LaToya C says:

    I definitely understand how you feel. I had a moment of self doubt shortly after starting my blog last year. I was looking at how beautiful everyone else’s blog was and I just didn’t feel like I measured up. But it’s all mental. I had to make a decision that I was just as good and hold my head up high. You have to do the same Ashleigh. Don’t be intimidated by what the next person is doing, because your work is just as good! I hope you decided to start your makeup business back up again! And the cooking videos! You are awesome!

    • Ashleigh says:

      Hi LaToya!

      Thanks so much for reading my story and for your kind words. It’s so hard to fall into the trap of comparing yourself to others, especially in the blogging/social media world. I’m hoping to get myself back on track with my makeup business AND my cookies videos. Baby steps is what it will take πŸ™‚

      xo,
      Ashleigh

  3. Nekeyeta Newkirk says:

    Thank you for sharing your story. It’s crazy how a simple thing as self doubt can be so demobilizing. Whether it’s in business, career, home, any area can be affected. I would be very interested to see how you combat your self doubt.

    • Ashleigh says:

      Thanks so much for reading my story Nekeyeta! I really appreciate it, as well as your kind words. I’m definitely going to work on suppressing my self doubt – it won’t happen overnight but I’m going to make it happen! πŸ™‚

      xo,
      Ashleigh

  4. Traci says:

    Ashleigh,
    Thanks so much for your honesty – this post is really encouraging and inspiring to me! You are SO not alone – so many women deal with these exact same feelings – myself included! We all need to remind each other from time to time that it’s OK to feel fearful and doubtful, but that we need to just go for it anyway, because we all have our very own brand of awesome to share with the world! Let yourself do what you love, and don’t worry about comparison to others – only compare yourself to YOU! Thanks for giving me the freedom to do the same today! πŸ™‚

    • Ashleigh says:

      Hi Traci!

      Thank you so much for your kind comments, they mean a lot. I know that many struggle with the same issue and we just need to learn that it’s okay to fumble and it’s even okay to fail. You never know what may happen if you don’t try, right? πŸ™‚

      xo,
      Ashleigh

  5. Nikki Crews says:

    Hi, I’m a new reader and I think it’s extremely fitting that this post is the first one I’m reading because I can relate to everything you’re saying 100%! Let’s be friends, haha. I’ve struggled with self doubt/impostor syndrome for a while now and it feels so debilitating. So much so that I’ve finally figured out what my dream job/career is but I’m too afraid to pursue it because I just don’t think I’m good enough, even though I’m sure I could be pretty successful. Anyway, please know that you’re not alone and that we all have some doubts sometimes. But it’s important to focus on the positive and work hard and don’t let ourselves get in our way too much. Now excuse me while I try to go follow my own advice! πŸ˜‰ I look forward to following you and getting to know you more. Thanks for sharing these thoughts and allowing us to relate to you.

    http://www.nikkibyexample.com

    • Ashleigh says:

      Hi Nikki!

      Thanks for reading and your sweet comments. I hate to hear that you struggle with the same issues – it really can be debilitating. I hope that you take your own great advice as well!

      And yes, let’s be friends! πŸ˜‰

      xo,
      Ashleigh

  6. denise wyckoff says:

    Ashleigh,
    Believe in yourself, do what you really want to do and don’t compare yourself to other people. You can do so much with your creativity, great personality just by being you. Put your head up and start where you left off. You are amazing!
    Love,
    Mommy

    • Ashleigh says:

      Thank you Mommy! You’ve always been one of my biggest supporters and I appreciate you more than you know! Keep on pushing me, one day I’ll listen! πŸ˜‰

      Love you

  7. Vicki Bradley says:

    Well, if it helps at all, I have great admiration for you always. You have many talents, Ashleigh, and wonderfully creative ideas. The way you can just whip up something to eat out of what you have is inspiring πŸ™‚ Plus your crafty projects are so clever and cute. First of all, stop comparing yourself to these other people, makeup artists, etc. You do your own thing. There is always going to be “competition” but you are every bit as good as the majority of them. And by the way, your cake decorating skills are top notch too!! I would pay for your cakes. Finally, I applaud your courage to lay all your inner vulnerabilities out there for the world to see. You have many gifts, believe in them and yourself.

    • Ashleigh says:

      Thank you so, SO much for your kind words. They mean more than you realize.
      I think we all have insecurities, it’s just a matter of knowing your self worth and having confidence. It’s hard not to compare myself to others but I am working really hard on it!

      Thank you again. I love you <3

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