You've Got This!

Banishing self-doubt and fixing your mindset while building your dream.

Launching your business or creative endeavor is not just hard work in the usual sense. It also invovles working on YOU more than you might realize. With that in mind, I have some thoughts for my fellow creative souls on how to overcome doubts and fears, particularly when starting something new.

Everyone’s Struggle

Would you like to know one thing I’ve noticed EVERYONE struggles with? Aligning our thoughts and internal monologue so that we stop doubting ourselves and shooting ourselves in the foot. 

Basically, it means we all struggle with self-doubts. We all self-sabotage in different ways. We all struggle with what Neil Gaiman calls “Imposter Syndrome”. We all feel alone in our struggle too.

My main “job” is serving the web and graphic design needs of my fellow creatives. That means, I usually am interacting with those I love dearly (my fellow creative souls) during a period of change and transition in their lives.

You look me up when you are rebranding or needing a new website or maybe looking to have your marketing materials redesigned.

BIG changes!

I remember one successful businessperson friend of mine chided me for giving out free therapy to my clients. It was a lightbulb moment for me.

I hit a crossroads. Everyone, especially creatives like you, needs lots of love, nurturing, and encouragement when stepping out to do something new, wonderful and a little scary. Heck ya, I give a little bit of free therapy in the form of encouragement and maybe just basic COURAGE.


Hear Me Roar!

There was a time as a busy woman — wife, mom of little ones, and all the thousands of other things that go with that — when I didn’t receive this idea of self-care and mindset well at all. Over the last few years, the concept of the importance of working on my mindset (and myself) really came alive.

My darlin, your mindset is everything.

Mindset isn’t about believing yourself to be a millionaire.

No, mindset as a very holistic concept. It’s about dealing with all of the junk and falsehoods and dysfunction and bad theology you have that holds you back in every area of your life.

Read more about the importance of working on you here.

How you think about yourself is crucial.

I know many people think the topic of mindset is a bunch of baloney. And you know what? I used to scoff about mindset stuff too.

The fact is simple. You are what you think. What you think of yourself and what you think of what you do for others really does affect you. Your mindset affects your success. Your mindset can trip you up.

Hey, even the Bible teaches that…in Proverbs 4:23. You are what you think. All the important stuff in life is rooted in your heart and mind.


Mindset Starts Early – but it can be fixed!

Do you want to know where the mindset’s foundations are really laid? In our earliest years. Think of it this way. As a parent, you’re recording your kids’ inner voice for years to come.

There are some things a parent may not think twice about, but they play over and over again in a child’s mind well into adulthood.

Telling a child their dream or desire is “silly” or “dumb”.

Implying a child isn’t good enough based on your response to them proudly showing you their accomplishment.

I was told, “Nobody is going to want to hold your hand” or “Nobody is going to love you” because I was always struggling with dirt under my nails (hands-on artist from an early age over here) and having wild, frizzy, untamable hair. 

It’s taken years, my friend, to accept how I look. To not feel like I’m only worthy if I have a manicure and perfectly groomed hair. I could force it to happen, but it wasn’t really me, you know? Too much work to put on a facade. A mask.

Working on your mindset is, in many ways, about recording over that weird, wrong tape that has been playing in your head since childhood.

A great mindset involves coming to realize that anyone who judges you “unworthy” based on who you really are doesn’t matter anyway — they aren’t your tribe. So….Ignore ‘em.


Not Everyone Gets Picked for Dodge Ball, and That’s Okay

One big way mindset and insecurities can harm your business is with analytics. If you’re going into business, it’s important to keep track of where you’re at and where you’re going, to see what’s working and what’s not in how you serve your tribe.

This is pretty silly in hindsight. But in my brain, it was similar to waiting to be picked for Dodge Ball in 6th-grade gym class. A feeling of rejection and humiliation. At the time, I’d rather not know how my company and website are performing if it might hurt my feelings.

At some point, I had to face some facts. A huge chunk of serving my tribe is figuring out who my tribe is and what they need — and crafting content that serves them. And then testing that with analytics and insights.

So on the one hand, I had to stop being hung up on being picked last for dodge ball so to speak. Not everyone is going to want me on their team for absolutely everything. Dodgeball isn’t my skill set. Helping creatives take their business online with design services is.

Once you really grasp your mission — your calling — what you’re meant to do, go for it. Plant the seed and start to grow that dream. Then don’t give in to the temptation to dig that seed up in doubt. Stay the course.  If you need help figuring all that out, I have some content that may help you over here.

Take a chance on your dreams. https://www.thoughtsanddesigns.com/taking-risks-isnt-always-bad/


Having come out on the other side of a season of hard times and even poverty, I feel I understand mindset even better. When you’re in a stressful situation, your mindset really takes a hit.

Not only do you deal with the stress of the situation itself — whether finances, health, relationships, whatever — but you have the added stress of a mindset in freefall, whether you realize it or not.  I’ve written more about this hit our mindsets take in hard times.

For example, some days when you’re just treading water, it’s hard to find the energy and focus to have your head screwed on right, for lack of better word. We can’t feel guilty about taking a moment to embrace whatever form of self-care and therapy helps us cope. For me, it’s usually music or certain movies, or going for a walk, or even hanging out in a little neighborhood coffeehouse. Here are some more thoughts on being overwhelmed you may find helpful. (treading)

In the case of dealing with financial issues, I don’t think many people fully grasp the effect poverty and financial issues have on your brain. I wrote a post a few years ago called, “This is Your Brain on Poverty” that seems to resonate with many readers. (https://www.thoughtsanddesigns.com/this-is-your-brain-on-poverty/)  Poverty and financial stress (as well as any other kind of stress) can mess with your head. Taking the time to care for yourself in the thick of it will help you get out of the hole in the long run.  Easier said than done, right?

Sometimes mindset is a simple as changing how we think of simple things. For a long while, you’d frequently hear me say, “Oh, I can’t afford that.” Maybe you battle that too. It’s frustrating to want something, or know something will help, but then realizing it’s out of reach.

And you know what, it’s true. I couldn’t afford that. Simple facts, right?

But after a while, with the encouragement of a friend who had been there and done that, I changed how I phrased it.

Instead of saying, “I can’t afford that,” I’d switch it around and ask, “Hmm, how can I afford this?”

Sometimes I came to realize that whatever “it” happened to be was just not that important at the time, relative to other expenses and needs. Other times, I figured out a suitable alternative for the time being. And yet other times, putting my mind to work, I came up with a way to make it happen.

In some cases, I have to tell you, it was nothing short of miraculous how things came to be. Would it have still happened if I was whining about not being able to afford things? Maybe, maybe not.


Recent posts about fixing your mindset and banishing self-doubt:

Working on You: How mindset changes everything
Working On You: Mindset Changes Everything

2018 was a weird year for me. I started the year with a word to express its theme: Mastery. At the start of 2019, looking back, I think a better theme would have been Mindset, as the mastery I achieved was over my own mind. Among the things I’ve worked on is me. In particular, […]

Scarcity, Abundance, and Balanced Frugal Living
Scarcity, Abundance, and Balanced Frugal Living

When I first started writing again, after having little babies in the house, the topic was on frugal living mostly. Well, motherhood and frugal living. I would have balked at the concept of Abundance. Why? Survival Mode Scarcity Can’t See Abundance Well, as I’ve written before regarding poverty, when you’re in the thick of it […]

The Pursuit of Mastery
In Pursuit of Mastery

Every year for the last several years, I’ve prayed about and chosen a different word as my “theme” for the year. This year, 2018, the theme is Mastery. One of the reasons for choosing mastery is that this has been something I’ve been working on in some areas in my life. I’m great at starting […]

This is your brain on poverty
This is Your Brain on Poverty

Everyone has their own thoughts on what causes poverty. Different pundits opine about what fixes financial woes for families in the 21st century. Half the time, I sit here reading those things, shaking my head. While rolling my eyes, I wonder how they would survive what I’ve survived.  Would any of these idiots still be alive at the […]

Taking Risks isn't all bad
Taking Risks Isn’t Always Bad

A short while ago, I posted about embracing failure. It’s an important lesson to learn because anyone who has ever done anything at all of value has failed at some point in their lives. Most have failed several times. No one ever succeeds the very first time they try something new.   Taking risks is […]

When You’re Feeling Overwhelmed and Just Treading Water

Many of us have had those moments, haven’t we? There are seasons in our lives when you’re feeling overwhelmed. It feels like you’re barely hanging on. Seasons when treading water is the greatest accomplishment. I’m reflecting a bit as I come to the one year anniversary of the car accident that almost killed two of my kids. […]

Embracing Failure
Embracing Failure

I’m sure that sounds like a strange thing, to suggest we should embrace failure. Well, maybe. I wouldn’t say we should try to fail, but we certainly shouldn’t fear failure. My own fear of failure early in life at times paralyzed me. Later, after moving away from home, I learned to just accept it as […]

How to Choose Joy
How to Choose Joy

You may have heard the quote that says something to the effect of, “You’re only as happy as you make up your mind to be”. Or maybe you’ve heard it said that being happy, joyful, and content is a choice. And, if you’re like me the first few times I received that advice, you may […]

Living Frugally within your values
Living Frugally within your own Values

Frugal living, to be successful, has to be about saving money in ways that don’t leave you or your family feeling frustrated or deprived. A frugal living tip is only going to work effectively in your life if it fits your lifestyle and your values. It took me years to learn that. I could never […]

6 ways to start putting money away for savings
6 Ways to Start Putting Money Away for Savings

Since the day when a financial planner guy caused me a few weeks worth of lost sleep, and several dozen panic attacks by telling us we should be putting aside $1,000 a month to save for retirement and college for our then-three children, I tried to develop a plan. Naturally, after those tidings from Mr. […]

enough
Enough

Last week, as I met with a friend down in the city, she was talking to me about my savings plan that I talk about in Put Your Budget on a Diet, where I put every $1 bill I receive back as change into savings. I call this “The One Dollar Plan”. It’s simple but […]

Is Contentment Complacency
Is Contentment Complacency?

Is being motivated and driven to improve one’s situation (financial and otherwise) contradictory to the call to be content? Does being content mean being complacent? That’s the heart of a back and forth conversation I’ve been having with someone on Facebook. The conversation has left my brain operating in high gear for a while now, […]