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The Deficit of the Doubt

There’s a cause-and-effect relationship between what’s in your mind and what’s happening in your life right now.

What’s in your mind becomes what’s in your life.

It’s a simple formula: How you feel about yourself and what you say to yourself are the single greatest forces for forecasting your future. If you think you’re incompetent at your job, you’re not going to ask for a raise. If you believe you’re overweight, you’re not going to put yourself into the dating pool. If you think you’re a lousy mother, you’re not going to believe your husband when he says that you’re an excellent mother. If you don’t think you’re smart enough, you’ll stay at work too late trying to prove that you are.

I’m speaking from experience on that last one.

This is the way the world works: The actions you take in your life come from the images in your mind. And guess who plants those images in
your mind?

You – and only you.

No one has access to or control over what happens in your mind except you. You’re in charge of your thoughts, and your thoughts create the reality in front of you.

“We become what we think about all day long.”
 – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson said it best when he said that you become what you think about all day long. What do you think about all day? What do you say to yourself all day? For too many years of my life, I carried around negative images of myself in my mind. The drumbeat of the message was always the same. I wasn’t smart enough, patient enough, kind enough, pretty enough, wife enough, sister enough, daughter enough, or mom enough. And the circumstances of my life directly reflected those beliefs. I worked too much, took on too much, tried too hard, ate too much, didn’t work out enough, didn’t cook enough, wasn’t home enough.

It wasn’t pretty. Trust me. Or just ask my husband.

I’ve been studying the lives of mothers for almost ten years, and the research remains consistent year after year. The number one emotion mothers experience more than any other is doubt. And it’s deep-seated self-doubt. I doubt whether I’m doing a good job at the most important job in the world, and I doubt whether I can say anything when I feel like I’m doing a bad job.

Doubt can be a powerful force in someone’s life. Do you live in the deficit of your own self-doubt? I believe too many mothers do. Actually, I know for a fact that too many mothers do. When you operate your life from the deficit of self-doubt, you don’t give yourself enough credit. You create an image in your mind that you’re not good enough, and then you act on that image. And by acting, I mean trying too hard, working too hard, saying yes too often. You know the story.

Starting every day from a deficit is not a good place to start.

If you want to change your life, you first have to change your thoughts. If you believe you are good enough, smart enough, kind enough, pretty enough, whatever enough, your life will improve dramatically. And guess what? You get to believe whatever you want to believe.

Regardless of the circumstances in your life, never forget that you are the writer, director, and producer of the images in your mind. Nobody controls that space except for you. If you want to live a better life, you should start by thinking better thoughts about yourself.

Starting now.

Katherine Wintsch is a nationally recognized expert on modern motherhood, founder of The Mom Complex in Richmond, and author of “Slay Like a Mother.” The majority of her expertise comes from studying the passion and pain points of mothers around the world. The rest, she says, is accumulated from a little trial and a whole lot of error while raising her own two children, Layla and Alex.
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