Deal with insecurity

10 Ways to Overcome Insecurities

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What are insecurities?

Three types of insecurities

What are the consequences of insecurities?

What causes insecurity?

10 tips to overcome insecurities

Final thoughts

Some days you feel like a rockstar, like nothing can bring you down. In every situation, you exude confidence. Need to introduce yourself to new people? No, problem — you feel easy, and even graceful, in your own skin, without that nervous feeling in your stomach. Giving a speech to a crowd doesn’t scare you because you feel good about what you’re talking about.

Everyone loves feeling invincible. Or at least super-competent.

Other days, not so much. It’s like a switch flips. Some days, without obvious causes, you want to hide because nothing seems to feel right.

Our insecurities can get the better of us, but that’s entirely normal. We’re all humans and we are wired to notice what doesn’t go well or what isn’t working more than what is. Your inner critic comes out of nowhere and does some damage to your self-confidence.

It’s easy to tell people to stop being insecure, but learning how to overcome insecurities is challenging.

What are insecurities?

Insecurities find their way into every aspect of our lives. We can be insecure about how we look, how tall we are, what our voices sound like, and more. 

Insecurities can come from being bullied at school or constantly scrolling through social media and comparing yourself to others. Past experiences can follow us forward and haunt our self-confidence today, or daily events can trigger feelings of inadequacy.

All of our insecurities can come from a lack of self-esteem. They stem from our self-talk revolving around negative thoughts, like self-doubt and questions about our self-image. We often feel insecure when we don’t value our well-being and practice self-care.

An insecure person could feel nervous, anxious, or hesitant about certain things. Whether that’s how well they can do multiplication or what their skateboarding skills are like, these feelings can consume you and prevent you from taking advantage of new opportunities. 

3 types of insecurities

Since insecurities can touch many aspects of our lives, there are a few types to be familiar with. Here are three different types of insecurities to think about:

1. Personal insecurity

Personal insecurities are about how you look or sound and how others perceive you. These surface-level insecurities can seem superficial to someone observing from the outside — worrying about hair or clothing or an unwelcome blemish.

But they can be deeply felt by the individual and cause distress. Personal insecurities can even prevent us from pursuing relationships, career opportunities, or social connections — if we let them. 

They can stem from a lack of self-confidence because you care deeply about what people think of you. They often, but not always, relate to body image.  

Social media platforms often lead people to compare themselves to others and enhance their insecurities leading to unhealthy coping mechanisms like eating disorders and self-harm.

2. Professional insecurity

Professional insecurities happen at our workplaces and make people anxious and self-conscious to give presentations or speak up.

These insecurities can also fill people with self-doubt and cause them to believe they aren’t good enough for promotions or taking risks. It leads people to experience imposter syndrome and miss out on achieving their goals.

3. Relationship insecurity

Relationship insecurities are common and can occur in any relationship. They make you feel like you don’t deserve your partner and that someone else will make them happier.

These insecurities can lead to jealousy, arguments, and dominating behavior. Relationship insecurities can be caused by past experiences with previous partners or other friends and family members if they’ve caused any trauma.

What are the consequences of insecurities?

We all have our down days, but too much negativity can make a profound impact on your life. It harms our physical health and mental health. Since our insecurities stem from our self-esteem, when we have many insecurities that take over our minds, it causes low self-esteem. 

Our low self-esteem can make us more prone to mental health issues like increased anxiety, depression, and more. When our self-worth is low and fragile, we don’t believe in ourselves. This can lead to us abandoning our dreams or living inside our comfort zones. 

Having a positive self-image is empowering, but we can be too hard on ourselves when that’s taken away. It can cause people to throw their self-compassion out the window.

Even narcissists are insecure. People who suffer from narcissism are often flexing to compensate for their insecurities. 

Insecurities are also troublesome for our relationships. Feeling insecure can cause other feelings of distrust, anger, and even resentment towards our friends, family, and partners. This behavior creates tension for everyone and is unhealthy if left unresolved. 

Insecurities don’t have any right to rule your life. If you’re looking for help overcoming your insecurities, then get in touch with one of our coaches at BetterUp. We’d love to help you gain perspective and learn to live a life beyond your insecurities.

What causes insecurity?

We need to know what causes our insecurities and where they come from to overcome them. It can be challenging to pinpoint exactly where each of our insecurities originates, but better understanding the causes of insecurities can help us move past them.

Research has shown that 40% of our happiness comes from how we experience recent life events. Failure in any aspect of life can fill people with self-doubt, negatively impacting their self-esteem and confidence. 

Imagine if your boss passed you over for an outstanding promotion at work that you’ve worked hard to achieve. This failure would crush you, and your self-esteem would take a big hit.

Failure can lead to a harsher inner critic if the feeling goes unresolved. You may strive for perfectionism because you won’t feel confident or satisfied without it.

Social anxiety also causes insecurities. When people lack confidence in social situations like family parties, business meetings, interviews, and dates, they feel afraid of how people perceive them.

Are they judging my shoes? Do they think my laugh is too loud? Did I say something stupid? These are all thoughts that someone insecure could have. 

Social anxiety can be caused by past experiences such as bullying, being rejected by loved ones, and other incidents of people judging you too harshly.

After negative past experiences, accepting ourselves and our mistakes is difficult. But our confidence won’t improve if we don’t practice better self-acceptance. 

10 tips to overcome insecurities

Since everyone has different insecurities, there is no universal way to stop being insecure. You might need to try new strategies if some don’t work the best for you. Keeping that in mind, here are 10 tips to help you overcome your insecurities:

  1. Confront your feelings rather than avoid them.
  2. Have a growth mindset and set solid goals.
  3. Prepare yourself for setbacks but don’t let them control you.
  4. Embrace all of your characteristics and passions.
  5. Challenge your negative thoughts and think critically.
  6. Surround yourself with positive, encouraging people.
  7. Listen to other people’s stories about overcoming their insecurities.
  8. Try new things that make you happy.
  9. Let go of people and situations that fuel your insecurities.
  10. Be proud of your progress, no matter how big or small it is.

Final thoughts

If you’re struggling with insecurities or lost in your quest for higher self-esteem, try BetterUp.  

When you work with a BetterUp coach, we help guide you to identify the causes of your insecurities and how best to move past them.

How to Stop Being Insecure and Build Self-Esteem

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It’s normal to have down days where you feel you can’t seem to do anything right. But feeling insecure about yourself all the time can take a toll on every aspect of your life, from your physical health and emotional well-being to how you perform at your job.

Not feeling good enough can be especially hazardous when it comes to your romantic relationships by making your more prone to feelings of anxiety and jealous. And it doesn’t just affect you. Research shows that self-esteem impacts both you and your partner’s relationship satisfaction.

The good news is there are ways to build up your self-esteem. While it won’t happen overnight, with the right strategies and mindset, you can take steps toward changing the way you feel about yourself.

Take inventory of everything you’re doing right. Chances are, your thoughts about yourself aren’t taking into account the hundreds of positive micro-decisions we make on a daily basis.

Remembering how you helped your neighbor with their groceries or assisted your boss during an important meeting, can help you focus on your contributions rather than shortcomings.

If you’re always looking after everyone else’s needs and forgetting your own, you’re not valuing yourself enough. Adding in more self-care to your daily routine can help you counter negative thoughts and build up your self-worth.

Here are some ways you can show yourself some love:

  • Nurture your body by getting a massage or facial.
  • Do your favorite workout at least 30 minutes each day.
  • Unplug from your phone or take a social media detox.
  • Treat yourself to a nourishing meal.
  • Practice self-compassion; talk nicely to yourself.

Even just making sure you’re eating regularly and prioritizing sleep can give your self-worth a boost.

There are going to me moments when you fumble — it’s just part of life. But accepting this fact can help you feel more comfortable in your own skin.

The next time you find yourself feeling embarrassed or self-conscious, try to laugh it off.

Learn more about why awkwardness isn’t such a bad thing.

It’s easy to be hard on ourselves after stumbling or making a mistake. But beating yourself up because you didn’t score that big promotion or forgot to make an important phone call keeps you stuck in a negative cycle of shame and self-loathing.

Try to practice countering your negative thoughts as they come up:

  • Forgive yourself and understand these are isolated instances that don’t define you as a person.
  • Write down your negative thoughts so that you can step back and simply observe them.
  • Consider what you’ve learned from the experience and re-focus on the positive. How has this taught you to create a better outcome in the future?

There’s nothing like surrounding yourself with loving, supportive people to build up your confidence and make you feel accepted for who you are.

Make a plan to set up more coffee dates and get-togethers with your nearest and dearest. Seeing yourself through the eyes of those who care about you will help you appreciate your own unique qualities and perspectives.

Think about the times you’ve felt especially insecure. Who were you with? What were you doing?

Noticing the people and situations that deflate your self-esteem can help you pinpoint what to avoid. If you’re surrounding yourself with so-called “friends” who make it a habit of pointing out your flaws, it’s a clear sign to find better company.

Celebrate your successes and talk yourself up when you’ve had a big win at work. Being proud of what you do, even if it seems awkward at first, can have a powerful effect on your self-esteem.

Keep a reminder on hand to help boost your confidence throughout the day by:

  • saving compliments people have given you on your desktop or notes app
  • writing out all of your accomplishments to review them when you’re feeling insecure
  • taking a few minutes each day to list three things you appreciate about yourself

Prioritize spending free time doing things that bring you joy and happiness, whether it’s curling up with a book or cooking a good meal from scratch.

Even better, consider learning a new skill or taking up a hobby you’ve always wanted to try. Aside from making you happy, mastering a new skill is a good reminder of your talents and interests.

Overcoming insecurity and building up your self-esteem don’t happen overnight. Try to be kind to yourself during this process and don’t get discouraged if things aren’t improving as fast as you’d like them too.

Even if you don’t feel confident today, the small baby steps you are taking now will eventually grow into bigger steps and keep you moving forward.

Speaking with a qualified therapist can help you explore your fears and insecurities by understanding where they come from. They can also help you develop new tools for navigating situations that zap your confidence.

Not sure where to start? Our guide to affordable therapy can help.

Books about the nature of insecurity and ways to work through it can not only offer good advice, but also help you feel less alone in what you’re going through.

There are countless books the subject, but these titles are a good starting point.

What to Say When You Talk to Your Self

Through his profound technique, Shad Helmstetter, PhD, teaches you how to let go of nagging, counterproductive self-talk in favor of embracing a more positive outlook on life.

Purchase online.

What’s Right with Me

This book on celebrating your strengths and qualities will help you gain new perspective about your positive traits. Carlene DeRoo, PhD, also offers engaging activities to help you identify what’s going right in your life.

Purchase online.

Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself

If you’re struggling to recognize your value and worth, Kristen Neff, PhD, provides a road map for being gentle with yourself. Her book includes exercises and action plans for dealing with all kinds of emotional obstacles.

Purchase online.

Healing Your Emotional Self

This book by Beverly Engel is a particularly useful read if you think your self-esteem issues may be rooted in childhood experiences. She documents the many types of psychological abuses children experience while growing up and offers a powerful guide for overcoming low self-esteem.

By recognizing defense mechanisms carried from childhood, you can learn from your past to create a more positive self-image.

Purchase online.

Everyone deals with insecurity on some level, but left unchecked, it can have a big impact on your day-to-day life. Building self-esteem isn’t always easy, and it can take some time, but the end result is worth it. Don’t hesitate to reach out for help if you feel like you could use some extra support.

Cindy Lamothe is a freelance journalist based in Guatemala. She writes often about the intersections between health, wellness, and the science of human behavior. She’s written for The Atlantic, New York Magazine, Teen Vogue, Quartz, The Washington Post, and many more. Find her at

Self-doubt: 6 ways to overcome it

Clinical psychologist and co-founder of YouTalk service Anna Krymskaya tells where self-doubt comes from, how it differs from low self-esteem, how to overcome it and what signs can be used to recognize a person who is insecure

We all have moments when we feel like we're not up to par: maybe we didn't reach our goals at work, got a low score on an exam, or weren't quite savvy in a conversation. It is perfectly normal to doubt your competences and realize your shortcomings from time to time. Moreover, it is even necessary for self-improvement and development. The problem arises when we get “stuck” in this feeling of inferiority, self-doubt becomes an obstacle to self-expression and prevents the achievement of goals.

Finished reading here

What is self-doubt

The American Psychological Association defines self-doubt as a feeling of inferiority, inability to cope with life's difficulties, accompanied by a sense of general uncertainty and anxiety about one's goals, abilities and relationships with other people. An insecure person is sure only that everything turns out worse for him than for others, and that everyone else is smarter, stronger, more beautiful, and so on.

Uncertainty makes it difficult to adequately assess one's capabilities. Instead of working on self-development, an insecure person gives up because he does not believe that his efforts can fix something, which means that he believes that it is not even worth starting to do something.

Uncertainty is often confused with low self-esteem. But these states are not the same, although they often coexist with each other. The word "confidence" (English confidence) comes from the Latin fidere - "believe, trust." To be self-confident means to believe in yourself and, in particular, in your ability to successfully or at least adequately interact with the world. A confident person is ready to take on new challenges, seize opportunities, handle difficult situations, and take responsibility if things go wrong. Confidence is also something that is noticeable to others.

Self-esteem is how a person perceives his own value and significance of his personality, life, activities. Self-esteem does not depend on skills, it is unconditional love for yourself as you are. A person with adequate self-esteem has a belief about himself that goes something like this: "I am a good person, entitled to attention and respect from others - simply in fact, and not because I deserve it in some way."

Constant and strong self-doubt, low self-esteem and a sense of superiority of others over oneself together form what is called in psychology an “inferiority complex”.

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Signs of self-doubt

It is noteworthy that many find it difficult to determine their level of self-confidence. You can feel confident in one area of ​​your life, but in another - feel insecure, doubt your abilities and not understand what is holding back their development.

Insecure people, as a rule:

  • Socially withdrawn - they avoid social events or force themselves to be socially active, but at the same time they feel tense, as if watching themselves from the side;
  • Experiencing constant anxiety, which shifts the priorities of attention and leads to a distorted perception of reality;
  • They do not know how to accept compliments because they do not believe that they are being told the truth;
  • Worry about what other people think of them;
  • They neglect to take care of themselves, because they see no point in it, because nothing will change anyway;
  • Not ready to take on challenges and step out of comfort zone;
  • Constantly doubt the decisions made;
  • Retreat from conversations that may lead to conflict, even if they think they are right;
  • Constructive criticism is poorly perceived, it touches and hurts them;
  • Rarely expresses themselves in a group conversation;
  • Constantly explain and justify their actions;
  • Complain and blame other people a lot, removing responsibility from themselves and their actions;
  • Often resort to defensive body language, cross their arms over their chest, walk with a stern face, unconsciously hiding from people;
  • Seek the approval of others;
  • Pessimists and afraid of the future;
  • They are ashamed when they do not achieve perfection in any business;
  • Apologize often;
  • Buy things they don't really like;
  • They lie simply to embellish their stories, which they do not find interesting enough;
  • Often avoid eye contact;
  • Use self-deprecating humor as a defense mechanism: it's better to joke about yourself before someone else does.

Where does self-doubt come from

There are a lot of factors that affect self-confidence. These are the characteristics of family upbringing, and the culture in which the child grew up, and relationships with a romantic partner, the environment and mental health status.

The development of self-confidence depends on contact with significant adults in childhood. First of all, let's talk about parents. Ideally, in order not to grow up insecure, the child should receive from them a sense of self-worth - when adults notice and support the activity and initiatives of the child, give him the freedom to experiment, believe in his abilities, praise and reward for success. At the same time, they do not depreciate in case of failures, allow mistakes (and also admit their mistakes and apologize for them), are interested in the opinion of the child and take it into account when making decisions, respect the child’s boundaries as well as their own. One part of these points is aimed at loving and accepting the child as a whole. The other is to support his actions, the ability to notice successes and not grieve over failures. Accordingly, the former will cultivate a sense of adequate self-esteem, the latter - self-confidence.

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However, it is difficult to find a family in which these recommendations will be fully implemented. No wonder so many people feel insecure. But if the childhood experience was unsuccessful, this does not mean that it will determine the rest of your future life and you will not be able to overcome self-doubt. In adulthood, we have the opportunity to fill in the gaps, give ourselves the care, love and support that was not enough in childhood. You can start with a trip to a psychologist. Perhaps the main advantages of psychotherapy are the ability to “get acquainted” with a small one, work through injuries and make up for deficiencies.

In addition to childhood trauma, there are enough triggers in today's world that make us feel inadequate and insecure. This is, for example, a flood of information from companies that sell us products and services designed to fix "problems" with our body or lifestyle that we would otherwise not notice. Or social networks that broadcast the idea that others allegedly always have perfect relationships, a great career and a model appearance.

Self-doubt and low self-esteem can also be a consequence of more serious trauma associated with the experience of violence - physical, sexual or emotional. In such cases, work with a specialist psychologist is necessary. Do-it-yourself strategies for coping with uncertainty in such a situation can often be useless and sometimes harmful.

How to become more confident

Confidence is not an innate, fixed characteristic. It is an ability that anyone can acquire and improve over time. If you are reading this article, this is already a good start. Even learning and understanding what confidence is is a big step in the right direction.

Working with a psychologist will help speed up this process. It will be based on a strategy developed taking into account your inputs: the characteristics of childhood upbringing, the presence of traumatic experiences; the environment you are in right now.

But there are also some tips and exercises that will be useful, regardless of your experience. To overcome self-doubt, you can try to do the following:

Write down everything that you can praise yourself for

Try at the end of the day to note what exactly today you did well, in what areas you managed to advance, what strengths to show. By devaluing ourselves and our actions, we often hinder the development of our confidence. Try to fix your thoughts and appreciate even the smallest successes. They are no less important than great achievements.

Acknowledge your emotions

To overcome insecurity, it is worth starting to acknowledge every emotion, including the most difficult ones. Try saying words of encouragement to yourself, change your internal dialogue to supportive instead of critical. For example, instead of “you still won’t succeed, as usual”, you should say “you will definitely succeed, and if you don’t succeed this time, then try again, then you will succeed for sure!”. It is not scary if at first these words do not sound sincere. Think about how you would talk to a child, how you would support him - and try to support yourself in the same way.

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Talk frankly with loved ones

Unconfident people strongly depend on the opinions of others. The paradox is that few of us know what others really think of us. You can try to talk to friends and loved ones - ask what qualities they value in you and whether any of these qualities are unique. You can also try to find out what others think you are really good at and what they can rely on you for. Sometimes we get too carried away with self-criticism and forget to notice the good in ourselves.

Make a list of your valuable resources

Try to write down on paper your valuable resources: knowledge, education, skills, professional and personal experience, character traits, circle of acquaintances, values ​​and beliefs, goals and plans. Perhaps in the process you will find items that you forgot about and they will pleasantly surprise you. Then you can reread the list and note the resources that you can rely on in different situations - including difficult periods of life. You can also think about what resources you would like to develop and sketch out a plan of action. Starting to do it, with new experience, you can gain stability and confidence.

Transform fear into interest

Another domain of uncertainty is shyness and fear in dealing with people. Often, it is with those whose opinion he cares that an insecure person will feel heaviness in communication and awkwardness. It is worth trying to transform fear into interest and involvement. Every time you notice yourself concentrating on the other person's thoughts about you, try asking yourself why this person is interesting to you, what you like about him, and what you don't understand. This approach will help to neutralize fear, keep the conversation going, create a comfortable environment for communication and overcome uncertainty.

Take care of your physical and emotional health

if you do not get enough sleep and feel lethargic. It can be helpful to think about whether you are resting enough - and resting enough to really replenish resources.

If some people need to be alone and do nothing to restore energy, then others are charged with new emotions, travels and impressions. It is important to be in touch with yourself, listen to yourself, try to understand your true needs. Just taking care of yourself already helps you feel more confident.

arguments for essay 15.3 “what is self-doubt?”


  1. Self-doubt is a negative self-assessment.
  2. Insecure people have low self-esteem.
  3. Unsure people will not be able to succeed in life.
  4. Self-doubt often begins in childhood.
  5. It's never too late to start changing yourself for the better.
  6. Uncertainty makes a person dependent on someone else's opinion.
  7. Everyone makes mistakes.
  8. One must accept all one's shortcomings and learn to use one's strengths.
  9. Uncertainty is characteristic of all people to varying degrees.
  10. Uncertainty is a negative quality of a person.


In everyday life, people often underestimate themselves. They occupy low positions, do not seek to surpass their surroundings in anything. In communication with them, any hint of exaggeration or lies is easily revealed - insecure individuals love to "embellish" the facts.

Some examples of self-doubt:

  • When meeting a person with low self-esteem, he will never extend his hand first, will not utter a greeting.
  • In a team, a person, upon receiving an offer for a higher position, in most cases refuses it, without good reason. That is, a person rejects the offer without even trying himself in a new role.
  • In dealing with women, a man who is unsure of his abilities will allow a lady to play a dominant role (if there is still a relationship, otherwise he will not be able to connect even two words during a conversation).
  • A woman will completely depend on the opinions of others. She solves any, even everyday issues only with the help of discussion and advice from her friends.

Epithets for the word "uncertainty" , amazing, sudden, considerable, incredible, real, spiritual, feminine, masculine, current, similar, complete, greatest, unimaginable, noticeable, unprecedented, fair, yesterday, understandable, genuine, true, ongoing, flashed, inexplicable, subconscious, inhuman .

Painful, painful, terrible, terrible, terrible, wild, murderous, panicky, irresistible, frenzied, desperate, doomed, powerless, involuntary, exorbitant, anxious, dull, empty.

Examples from fiction

  1. A.S. Pushkin "The Stationmaster" .

The protagonist of the story Samson Vyrin works as a stationmaster, his rank belongs to one of the last ranks. He was used to injustice, anyone could offend him, taking advantage of the fact that Vyrin did not have the right to answer. The protagonist could not stand up for himself not only because of his low position in society, the key feature of his character was lack of confidence in himself and his own abilities. Samson Vyrin lived in his little secluded world, where no one cared about him. The only joy in the life of a stationmaster is his daughter Dunya, who looks like her dead mother. Uncertainty did not at all prevent Vyrin from living and fulfilling his duties, if not for an accident. Once, a young hussar stopped at his station, who tricked him into taking the beautiful Dunya with him to the capital. The heartbroken father went after the offender, but the lack of fortitude did not allow the station master to insist on his own and take his daughter from the hussar's house. Officer Minin did not consider the father of the bride to be a worthy person and decided to give him money in order not to see him at his door again. Indecision and helplessness did not allow Samson Vyrin to fulfill his paternal duty and help his daughter, he understood that the windy hussar would not marry her, but would play and leave her.

Self-doubt killed the main character, he died alone and in poverty, never forgiving himself for not saving his own daughter.

  1. A.P. Chekhov "The Man in the Case" .

At all times there were people who were unsure of themselves and their own abilities. They often avoid other people and communication with them because they doubt their own worth. It happens that such an attitude towards oneself breaks life and leads to terrible consequences. A true example of an insecure person is the protagonist of the story A.P. Chekhov Belikov, he works as a teacher of the Greek language. His whole life is enclosed in a “case”, even before going out, he thinks through his outfit so that fewer people pay attention to him. Belikov's main goal is to be inconspicuous, so he becomes angry and aggressive when he has to contact someone. The protagonist of the story is a law-abiding citizen and has always been dissatisfied with those who somehow deviated from the established rules. Because of this adherence to principles, those around him avoided him, fearing punishment for the violations committed. When trying to change his life, Belikov realized that he could not live differently, he could not be part of society. Existence outside the "case" ruined him, led to death. The protagonist of the story "The Man in the Case" is proof of the terrible consequences of such a human quality as complete self-doubt.

  1. F.M. Dostoevsky "Crime and Punishment" .

The protagonist of the novel F.M. Dostoevsky's "Crime and Punishment", despite his attractive appearance, was a very insecure, reserved and gloomy person. The reason for his uncertainty lay in the extremely distressed situation in which the former student was: the room was very small and shabby, the clothes were worn out, there was nothing to pay for dinner. It was his financial situation that made him gloomy and notorious, any communication with people pissed off the main character. Pride did not allow Raskolnikov to accept help from his mother or Razumikhin, he considers this too humiliating. The state of need gave rise in the head of the main character to the idea of ​​dividing people into two types: those who have the right and those who tremble. He decided to get rid of self-doubt by killing a person in order to test the correctness of his theory. But everything did not go according to plan, along with the evil old pawnbroker, her sister died, who did not harm anyone. Having committed a crime, Raskolnikov does not feel the long-awaited relief, he only gets worse. He is not a killer by nature, he is just an unfortunate, desperate man who completely lost his peace after what he had done. In order to somehow alleviate the mental anguish, Rodion tells everything to Sonya Marmeladova, who calls him to repentance and responsibility for his act. Having received his punishment, Raskolnikov does not feel relieved, because he cannot forgive himself, only love could help him overcome all difficulties and overcome negative qualities in himself.

  1. N.V. Gogol "Overcoat" .

An insecure person cannot appreciate himself, and this happened to the main character of the story N.V. Gogol's "Overcoat". Akaki Akakievich most of all in his life was afraid of what people would say about him, he understood how low he belonged to and therefore allowed others to mock and make fun of him. The only way to avoid humiliation is to go unnoticed, so Akaky Akakievich avoided people. It seemed to him that respect can only be earned by material well-being, which is why it was so important for the main character to sew an overcoat. He was sure that this thing would open all the doors for him in life, he really believed in a better future that awaits him with a new overcoat on his shoulders. When the long-awaited new thing was purchased, the main character radically changed, his insecurity and isolation disappeared, his colleagues began to treat him completely differently. That is why Akaky Akakievich dies, having lost not only an expensive thing, but also the only opportunity for public recognition. He could not return to his former life, death is better than former mockery and humiliation. Nikolai Vasilyevich Gogol wanted to convey to the reader that no matter what social class a person belongs to, one must respect oneself and not allow others to treat their personality down. Everything is in our hands, the main thing is to believe in our own strength.

Example 2. Self-doubt due to dissatisfaction with one's own life

Problem: You are dissatisfied with the person you are, and inspiration has not visited for a long time. Life seems boring, and everything that you once liked has long become a habit. This emotional state can lead to self-doubt and self-worth as a person.

Advice: The best advice on how to overcome self-doubt in this situation is to seek inspiration. If you are tired of the monotony of your own activities, start something new: hobbies, entertainment, themed clubs. If it seems to you that you do not know how to do anything special, then it's time to learn something new. Take a course in the language you've always dreamed of learning, upgrade skills related to your professional field, or start developing a talent you've long forgotten about.

As a result of active and interesting activities, you will begin to notice what you are doing, and this, in turn, will bring self-confidence. New skills and interests are a great way to make new friends or show off your skills in any social environment, which will also not go unnoticed and raise your self-esteem. For example, one of my acquaintances, having worked for 15 years in the banking sector, got into just such a situation. Banking life got sick of him and he devoted his free time to developing skills in Internet promotion, and, I must say, successfully. The Internet is full of such examples, so you can too.

Real life examples

  1. A well-known German writer Franz Kafka is a striking example of a person who is not confident in himself. He lived very poorly, was a petty official in the insurance department and hated his job with all his heart. From childhood, his hallmark of character was indecisiveness, so he had a hard time getting along with people and communicating with few people. The writer's poor health did not allow him to live a full life, he was often sick and eventually contracted tuberculosis, from which he died. The basis of the idea of ​​his works is the image of human consciousness, which is not able to interact with the outside world. Being a terribly insecure person, Franz Kafka was also dissatisfied with his work, so he bequeathed to burn all rough notes. However, his executor dared to violate the will, and thanks to this we are familiar with the name of the great German writer.
  2. My sister has been a shy and indecisive girl since childhood. More than anything, she liked to dance. The first time she joined the dance club at the age of four, and she began to do well. The choreographer distinguished her from the rest of the girls, but self-doubt did not allow her sister to perform solo parts. Life went on, the girl grew up, dancing classes moved to a more professional level, but when the question of choosing a profession arose, it was decided to enter the Faculty of Economics, since public life frightened her. While my sister was preparing for exams, she accidentally heard about the recruitment of young actors in the dance studio. P. Virsky. She did not even expect to get into the world famous dance ensemble, and for the first time in her life, a great desire to take risks arose in her heart. The entrance selection was very tough: two hundred people for 1 place, but my sister decided to try. She trained long and hard, prepared with all her might not only for the dance number, but also to eliminate the inner fear of performing in front of the audience. Even a leg injury a week before the selection did not stop the young dancer. That decisive day changed her whole life, my sister managed to cope with her indecision, and she became an artist who visited many countries with her team.

Folk wisdom

  1. “Fear has big eyes” . So our ancestors spoke of a person who was very frightened and, being under the impression, exaggerates the danger.
  2. "To be afraid of wolves - do not go into the forest" . Our people were sure that you should not even start any business if you are afraid of difficulties. Therefore, this proverb was used as an encouragement when preparing for a risky business.
  3. “The heart of a falcon and the courage of a crow” . This proverb speaks of people who are brave only in words, they may be capable of much, but fear does not allow them to reveal themselves.
  4. "He who runs back does not value honor" . This proverb refers to those people who lose their honor, being afraid of something. The origin of the proverb is connected with the behavior of warriors on the battlefield, only deserters fled from there, in whose name shame subsequently fell.
  5. "It's scary to see, but it will be done - fall in love" . This folk wisdom says: not everything is as scary as it seems initially. You have to take a risk and try, then everything will definitely work out.
  6. "It's not scary for one, but it's more fun for two" . This proverb says that you always feel more confident in a company. Even if a person is not afraid of anything, a friend who is nearby will make him even more determined.
  7. “God forbid our calf to catch a wolf” . With the help of this proverb, our ancestors ironically ironized someone's grandiose plans. It really becomes funny when a person sets himself an impossible task and assures others of his indispensable success.
  8. Feet are fragile under fear . The meaning of this proverb is that fear negatively affects a person: he becomes unsure of himself, doubts his own abilities, and is not capable of serious actions.
  9. “The bow is tight, the spear is short, but the sword cannot be drawn” .
  10. “In whom there is shame, therein lies fear” . Our ancestors believed that a person is most afraid of the fact that the truth will be revealed. Therefore, whoever has something to be ashamed of, he is always afraid of revealing his secret.


  1. “Uncertainty has destroyed so many opportunities” . Erich Maria Remarque spoke with regret about the missed opportunities associated with human uncertainty. Fear does not allow you to take risks, and the risk, as a rule, is justified.
  2. “To doubt is to lose power” . Honore de Balzac did not imagine it possible to accomplish any business after the doubts that arose. In his opinion, if a person has lost his determination, he will no longer be able to achieve the desired result.
  3. “Doubt gives me as much pleasure as knowledge” . Dante Alighieri, unlike many people, found his charm in doubts, he liked this feeling of uncertainty, gave a kind of pleasure.
  4. "Doubt is the first enemy of reason" . Even in the distant times of Ancient Greece, the wise philosopher Plato spoke about the dangers of human doubts. In order to achieve success in life, it is necessary to clear your mind of all doubts.
  5. “The only obstacle to our plans for tomorrow can be our doubts today” . Roosevelt believed that man is capable of anything. The main thing is his self-confidence.
  6. “Our doubts are traitors, they make us lose much that we could achieve, and because of fear we do not try to do it” . William Shakespeare knew firsthand what doubts lead to. He did not dare to tell his beloved about his feelings, which he regretted for the rest of his life.
  7. " Self-doubt - cowardly self-destruction" . William Shakespeare was sure that a person destroys himself with his doubts, and if he doubts his own abilities, then nothing good will come of him in life.
  8. "Uncertainty is the herald of failure" . Honore de Balzac says that no matter what business an insecure person undertakes, this venture is sure to fail. You can't be successful if you don't believe in yourself.
  9. "There is nothing worse, comrades, than cowardice and self-doubt" . M.A. Bulgakov attributed self-doubt to the most shameful human vices. Cowardly people meant nothing to him.
  10. "Actually, only what you wear without a sense of self-confidence is cheap" . Erich Maria Remarque believed that the main quality of a person is his self-confidence. If a person believes in himself, then others will believe in him.

Believe in yourself! — Psychologist

"It's normal, it's wonderful when a person is unsure of himself, but something is going on

doing something
and fantasizing about something and thinking about how to do it not like this
(the master makes a gesture)
and so, to be interesting, I think that the percentage of
uncertainty should be. ” (K. Khabensky)

An insecure person

looks something like this: a quiet gait with mincing steps, the head is drawn into the shoulders, avoids looking into the eyes, at crucial moments the voice is tense and trembling, facial expressions consist in diligent fixation of those who are raging in facial muscle expression. With all his might, he tries to be invisible, but with his strange appearance, on the contrary, he attracts too much attention. Unfortunately, you don’t really want to deal with such a thing: it seems unreliable, but in vain ...
In the case of an insecure person
a wonderful and even talented person may be hidden, but thanks to this shell of
no one knows about it, not even he himself.
is a rejection of oneself, of one's abilities and abilities, of one's own life. Terrible thing!!!
Shy people
often carefully disguise this quality of theirs, realizing how much it spoils their lives. They try to be more cheeky, diligently raising their voice and not looking up into the eyes of the interlocutor at crucial moments in their lives. However, vegetative reactions remain: increased sweating or chills, trembling in the body, slow speech, shortness of breath, dry mouth, lump in the throat or breathlessness during an important speech, pressure surge. When it is especially important to prove oneself, to speak in public
a timid person
may feel that his thoughts are confused, his memory fails, his speech goes astray.
© The author of the article you are reading now, Khramchenko Nadezhda/
Indigestion, frequent urge to urinate, all kinds of psychosomatic manifestations of mental dissatisfaction, which are now very common in the metropolis, can be added to the above.



- not a single formation, but a symptom complex. It includes: inadequate self-esteem, fear of self-expression, difficulties in communication, fear of oneself, motivation to avoid failure, endless doubts in thought processes, learned helplessness, dependence on others, inability to say “no” and refuse requests, fear of offending others , inactivity in personal life.
1. Inadequate self-esteem
. As a rule, we are talking about low self-esteem. A person who does not perceive himself as a creature worthy of a better life loses faith in himself. Low self-esteem is a personality trait, its roots are always in childhood. In the chapter "Reasons
» I will elaborate on this. However, oddly enough, a person with a very high self-esteem, who believes that others underestimate him, can also suffer from
, because deep down he understands that he will not achieve high results in his activities, and he does not know how to fail, therefore, he refuses very profitable offers and undertakings, being exactly
unsure of himself
2. Fear of oneself
. There are times when
a shy person
deep down does not accept himself and treats himself very badly, even rejects. Such a person, as a child, had to experience emotional rejection from his parents. This is a situation when a parent formally fulfills his obligations regarding the life and health of his baby, but
is not physically ready to be his parent, give his warmth, affection, sincerely express kind and tender feelings towards his child. Experiencing emotional rejection from the closest person, the child, not yet capable of abstract thinking, does not realize that the parent is wrong, and begins to blame himself for not being good enough for warm and tender parental feelings. In adulthood, such a person will be afraid of himself, that he can do something unworthy, bad, or not capable of anything good at all.
3. Fear of self-expression
. A vivid example of this phenomenon, when as a child you were sitting in a lesson and seemed to know the answers to the questions that the teacher asked, but did not pull your hand, something stopped you. It was the fear of self-expression. In adulthood, it manifests itself in the unwillingness to enter into an argument, to defend one's point of view, giving arguments and arguments in defense of one's unique position, to put one's original ideas into play at work, to be creative. The fear of self-expression manifests itself in a strong embarrassment when speaking in public.
4. Dependence on other people
A timid person
does not trust himself so much that he becomes dependent on life, choices, decisions of others. In addition, for peace of mind, such a person needs a positive assessment from others or significant people. Often it is
who are insecure
who become perfectionists, that is, they strive to bring things to an ideal state at the cost of huge efforts. Having reached the ideal, they admire themselves and feel at their best, and not a “lump of dirt”. They are not given a third. You need to either be on top, achieving perfection, or feel like nothing.
5. Constant doubts about everything
. “I doubt, therefore I think; I think, therefore I am." This phrase of Descartes does not at all indicate that a person who doubts everything is the standard of intelligence and wisdom, but that the idea of ​​primary matter is in matters of the origin of the world. Of course, doubts are a reason to look at the world and life from different angles and come to the most objective view of things. But on the other hand, a person who doubts everything is a person who does not have basic ideas from which you can build on when building your judgments. After all, he regularly renounces himself, taking someone else's point of view. In addition, he has to spend a huge amount of energy, effort and time on his doubts, which ultimately hinders and slows down his activity.
6. Inability to say “no” and refuse requests.
Remember the kindest wizard in the world from the play "Cinderella" by I. Schwartz, who plugged his ears with wax so as not to hear the requests of evil people, since he could not refuse anyone. Such dependability, alas, is characteristic not only of very kind people, but also of very insecure people

. This becomes dangerous for them, the manipulators are actively trying to use them for their own purposes. It is especially easy to put pressure on pity, guilt, because
fear of offending someone is characteristic.
7. Communication difficulties
. A person
suffering from self-doubt
is too obsessed with how he looks from the outside during communications. He seems to look at himself from the outside, intensely criticizes and self-flagellates for mistakes. As a result: facial expressions are distorted, the face is tense, the body is constrained. He gives the impression of a strange, squeezed person. Another option is also possible, when a person, trying to overcome such a state, on the contrary, begins to be too cheeky, even arrogant, flaunt, can be arrogant, trying to assert himself at the expense of other people. Unfortunately,
shy people
are often very lonely, they have no friends, and their personal life does not work out. This happens because they do not underestimate themselves too much, do not see their own merits, consider them boring, uninteresting and not resolute in communication. They get lost in unfamiliar companies, making new acquaintances is a real hard labor. After a chronic fiasco in communication and in personal life, there is a fear of failure and learned helplessness. A partner for the family is looking for something worse, often later it turns out that he (she) has a craving for alcohol and assault. Indeed, a collapse is predicted with a truly worthy person, and failure is too painful, so the most insignificant people are chosen to create a family.
8. Motivation to avoid failure
. There are two types of motivation associated with goals and success: achievement motivation and failure avoidance motivation. A person with the motivation to achieve success strives for high results in activities and for recognition, takes reasonable risks, is proactive and self-confident. He is not afraid to try himself in a new business and will not miss the chance. A person motivated to avoid failure is terribly afraid of making a mistake, of failing, taking on something new, responding to profitable offers. The manifestation of creativity requires courage, which is absent in a person who avoids failure. Such people act according to a proven pattern, following the beaten path, so that for sure, otherwise, it will not work, being afraid of risk, or vice versa, taking unjustified risks, dooming themselves to failure. They do not set themselves the desired goals that are so important to try to achieve in work, but live so as not to make a mistake.
Indecisive people
are people with a predominance of the motivation to avoid failures. However, constantly acting out of fear of failure, being
, a person begins to feel like a chronic loser, he realizes that he did not realize his abilities in work and in life as a whole, he begins to get the feeling that he does not live , but exists, or seems to live the life of another person. All these states may resemble
age crisis
, but their main reason is the motivation to avoid failures. The higher the achievement motivation of a person, the more his activity is effective and brings him pleasure. 1).
Dislike in childhood.
It is the parents who sow the seeds of bad attitude and lack of determination

with their children. This occurs when the birth of a given child is untimely, its sex is undesirable, or something is expected of it that far exceeds its abilities. Fertile ground for their germination is the lack of a situation of success, emotional rejection or rejection of the child. The further, the more. Disinterest in the achievements of the child, constant slander - the conditions for the rapid growth of
Often a child tries with all his might to earn the love of his parents, trying to be the best he can and meet their high standards. However, if everything is in vain, then he forms the installation "It's pointless to make an effort; anyway, you can't change the situation for the better on your own. " There is a pattern of behavior "Learned helplessness" and complete disbelief
, reinforced by the motivation to avoid failures.
Strange as it may seem, the opposite strategy in the upbringing of children by parents in the form of overprotection also leads to the formation of shyness
in a child. He gets used to the fact that there is always a crutch nearby and someone who will take care of him. He grows up without initiative and feels complete helplessness in the absence of support, feels his inferiority from the inability to cope with life's difficulties and overcome obstacles on his own.
2). Lack of opportunities
for the realization of inner potential and abilities, chronic fiasco in significant areas of life, for example, in personal, communication, work, raising children, etc., a long series of failures, a feeling of being driven into a corner by circumstances.
3). The gap between the "I-ideal",
i. e. who I want to be, and
" I am real"
, that is, who I really am at a high level of claims.
4). Low or very high self-esteem.5). Divorce, betrayal, traumatic experience in a relationship.
The feeling that you have been exchanged for someone always hurts your self-esteem and undermines your self-confidence

6). Physical defects


  • Formulate your own system of life coordinates, prescribe priorities in life and values. To focus in everything on this, and not on the opinions of other people, trying to earn their good mark.
  • Set specific goals, both near and far. Strive to achieve them by planning your affairs. Choose a job in which you would enjoy the process.
  • Set tasks according to your strength. Perfectionism very often leads a person to exhaustion and depression. Learn to relax and not reproach yourself for receiving pleasures and joys.
  • Keep a diary of your achievements, in which you would be sure to mark your daily achievements every day. Read it once a week, do not criticize.

Take everything positively and lightly without losing a sense of responsibility. ©The author of the article you are reading now, Khramchenko Nadezhda/

  • Communicate more with positive people who inspire self-confidence
    , avoid critics and envious people. Don't pay attention to the "slanting glances".
  • Retire your inner critic. Deal with failures calmly and without self-criticism. Learn to be proud of yourself, remembering your strengths and all your virtues as often as possible. Do not be afraid of mistakes, but be able to analyze them. Mistakes are an occasion for wisdom. Mistakes are a great opportunity for self-improvement if you can learn from them.
  • Strengthen your psychologist

    physical boundaries, say "No", calmly refuse, nullifying guilt if you are asked about something that disrupts your plans or causes inconvenience. You don't owe anything to anyone.

  • Do not compare yourself with others, compare only your own results: current with previous ones.
  • If you are afraid of failure, play the most negative outcome in your head. Is he so scary to pass and miss his chance? Don't be afraid to take reasonable risks and try your hand at different endeavors, taking them lightly, taking achievements seriously, and failures with humor.
  • Don't miss the opportunity to practice your communication skills. At this moment, get carried away by the interlocutor, allow yourself to think not about how you look and what you are doing wrong, but about him and his life, looking into his eyes, watching his facial expressions, gestures.
  • Learn to speak loudly, less often to apologize in speech. Straighten your shoulders, keep your head straight, looking forward, and not looking all the time for dirt under your feet, pull in your stomach, walk with a light gait with wide steps, and not shuffling. Do not be afraid to ask for help and favors, but do it not as if you are asking for alms, but calmly and firmly, simply stating the facts.
  • Work in a job that brings you maximum pleasure, revealing your creative potential to the maximum, and then success will not be long in coming. and chronic success strengthens self-confidence

    like nothing else.

  • Ask a psychologist for help

    . Man is a social being. It just so happens that we make judgments about ourselves by receiving feedback on our actions, words and deeds from the people around us. That is why it is very difficult to work on feelings for yourself and self-knowledge alone. I specialize in self-esteem, self-doubt, social anxiety, fear of self-expression, fear of public speaking.

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