My boss said to me a couple of months ago, “Don’t ask for help with something until you’ve given it a go yourself first.” She wasn’t trying to be nasty or negative when she said this though, she was giving me positive advice.
I’d asked her to write a headline for a press release that I had written because I had no ideas. She told me that she’s always happy to offer advice or help me with something, but she wanted me to try really hard to at least come up with some ideas.
So I went away and thought really hard to produce some ideas, which turned out to be great. So, I learned my lesson.
It wasn’t that I was too lazy to think of a headline, as I had spent hours writing the press release and was invested in it already. I hadn’t tried hard enough at first because I assumed my boss could do a better job than me.
I don’t just do this at work, I do this in my personal life too. I’ll always get someone else to park my car in a tricky situation, ask my boyfriend to change a lightbulb because I assume I can’t do it, or ask a friend to calculate a difficult sum for me (these are just some small examples). I almost always assume that someone can do it better than me. And that isn’t always the case!
When my boss said this to me, it’s like a lightbulb switched on in my head. Why do I never believe in myself? Why do I always put myself down? Why do I always worry that whatever I do, could be done better by someone else? It’s because I suffer with self-doubt, meaning I lack confidence in myself and my abilities.
I’m trying hard to switch out of this mindset and start believing in myself. Yes, some people may be more skilled in certain areas, but maybe I am too. I’m making a conscious effort to try new things, learn new skills, and attempt things that I never thought I could do. And if I fail? Then I’ll ask for help!
I’m glad that a single conversation made me realise how much I doubt myself, and now that I am aware of this, I’m going to try my best to ignore that little voice in my head that says “you can’t do it”, “you’re not good enough” and “don’t even bother”, because I am good enough, and I can do things, if only I try.