But if you did believe you could do it, what would you do?
“It” is that thing you fantasize about. “It” is technically possible but feels impossible. So I ask again, if you did believe you could do it, what would you do?
There are two main possibilities:
When you think through all of the details of what it would take to actually do it, you realize you don’t really want to. You just enjoy the fantasy, romanticized version of it in your head. You realize that you are actually on the right path for you, and this realization fills you with gratitude.
You realize that if you actually believed you could do it, you would be taking steps to get it done. This second possibility is the biggest reason people say that you won’t succeed if you don’t believe in yourself. If you believe you’re going to fail, why waste the time and energy? If you don’t believe in yourself, you probably won’t take action, and therefore not achieving “it” will become a self fulfilling prophecy.
However, let’s say you’re on board. You recognize that you have to believe in yourself. But you can’t bring yourself to actually feel confidence in yourself. Maybe you’ve failed too many times in the past. Maybe you have other people telling you it’s too much of a long shot. In any case, you know it’s technically possible, but you don’t believe it will actually happen.
That’s ok! Simply go back to the question: “If you did believe it was possible, what would you do?”
And then do that. Find out what others did to accomplish “it”. Read autobiographies of those who were successful. Watch their interviews. Figure out an action plan that you actually believe would get someone to that goal. Not you – just someone. Maybe someone you do believe in.
Then, follow that plan. It’s ok if you still don’t believe it will work, as long as you fake it. And fake it GOOD. Imagine you are an actor in a play, and your character is whoever you think would absolutely crush this goal. Any time you’re executing the plan, do what they would do. Talk how they would talk. Adopt their confident body language.
What would this person do when they faced setbacks? Would they see it as proof that “it” will never happen for them, or as a learning opportunity?
With enough practice, you’ll find that you start to actually become that person. You see the success from your efforts. Not always. Everyone fails sometimes. But you’ll also succeed sometimes.
As the evidence piles up, you’ll start to believe that maybe, just maybe, you actually can do it. And maybe, in the end, you actually do. But even if not, you accomplish and grow so much more than you would have if you never had the courage to fake it.