Over the past few years, there's a growing consensus in society that job stability isn't the same as job security. With the rising cost of living keeping pace with growing competition for opportunities, employees are more worried about holding on to their jobs than ever.
Add to that the monkey wrench thrown into the machinery by the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s unleashed a worrying wave of retrenchments in nearly every industry across the globe.
These factors have combined to foment a growing sense of job insecurity and self doubt among employees, particularly young professionals, who have neither financial security nor the skill and guile needed to navigate the bends of a tricky work environment.
With that in mind, here are six tips to help you deal with self doubt at work:
It goes without saying but before you can begin to tackle self doubt at the workplace, you need to recognise the problem to begin with. Constant self-criticism beyond a point tends to inculcate an acceptance of one's perceived flaws. It becomes second nature.
It's important to isolate your negative perceptions about yourself first. Find out what they are and figure out whether you're fretting over nothing or there actually is an area of improvement for you to work on.
Self doubt often cultivates unhealthy lifestyle choices, such as excessive drinking and smoking, consuming unhealthy amounts of junk food and having a messed-up sleep schedule. These may seem like a quick escape from the insecurities you face but in reality, they're dragging you down further.
Put a stop to all that and add some discipline to your life. Make it a point to exercise daily, even if it's just a brisk morning walk. Eat healthy and on time. Get at least seven to eight hours of sleep. You'll find that you're in a better frame of mind in no time.
One of the key areas we tend to measure ourselves in is how we stack up against our peers. But do remember that those around you have self doubts and insecurities of their own. They're simply dealing with them in a better way, and so can you.
Perhaps have a conversation with someone you look up to and more importantly, trust, and discuss your insecurities with them. Chances are they too were in the same boat as you once, and could help you crawl out of your pit of self doubt.
“A rolling stone gathers no moss” — Publilius Syrus
If you resign yourself to feelings of self doubt all the time, not only will you stop trying harder at your immediate tasks but also give up on thinking outside the box.
Sometimes, it’s important to experiment with new approaches to tackling existing problems, or perhaps even consider entirely different opportunities that could possibly hold the key to unlocking your best abilities.
That's not to say that you shouldn't commit to one thing and try to make it work, but there comes a point where you have to make a decision. Otherwise, not only will you be letting yourself down but those around you as well.
Sometimes, it's the work environment itself that's cultivating your feelings of self doubt. An unhealthy and demanding work culture driven by infighting and politics will not do you any good. While there are those who thrive in such a predatory setting, it could be extremely self-defeating for others.
In fact, your seniors could well be feeding on your insecurities to carry on with their exploitative practices. That's why it's important to be aware of what's going on in your office environment and whether you can make it work for you instead of against you.
Another factor that drives self doubt, nowadays more than ever before, is financial insecurity. Losing one's employment can, no doubt, be a frightening prospect. However, that sometimes tends to keep you stuck at a workplace where your self doubt is only aggravated further, due to any of the above reasons.
That's why it's important to save as best as you can and avoid wasting money. Get financially stable enough to where you can take time out to look for an opportunity more befitting of you and where you'll thrive instead of further worsening your insecurities.
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Also read: 6 ways to sharpen your memory before an exam
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