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Doubt is a killer.

We constantly ask ourselves “what-if?” and fill in the blank with a negative. If we hesitate to cast our situation in too-positive of a light, though, we reassure ourselves and call it “protection” or “playing it safe.” We’ve all experienced that sinking feeling of barreling through a decision by only considering the positives. No one likes to be burned a second time.

But if the downside is failure, then we’ll have to find a far higher upside than “playing it safe,” if we ever hope to achieve anything.

No one likes to fail, and everyone likes to win. Right? But if you insist on never failing, you’ll always find a million reasons to avoid starting. If we listen to the what-ifs and hold off acting, then we are only building our doubt muscles. Our tendency to be reluctant becomes stronger, our risk-taking muscles grow weaker.

Security is an illusion, and stability is a myth. Forget couch potatoes, we’ve actually become doubt potatoes, more comfortable examining what-ifs over and over than committing ourselves to a cause.

What happens if we push through? Over time we learn how to harness our reluctance for more effective, efficient decisions and even more powerful outcomes. We see those second-guesses as evolutionary holdovers that no longer offer us useful information. Our confidence grows at the expense of our doubt, and we own our decisions instead of resenting our temerity.


The one step to build strength? ACT. Exercise your confidence muscles. Those are the only muscles that really matter.


What’s the best way to avoid that deer-in-the-headlights feeling?

Eat that deerWatch Michelle Cain to see how it’s done.

But please, hold the doubt potatoes. I’ll stick with asparagus.


new york strip steak topped with bleu cheese