"when in doubt, don't." i read that the other day in an article about the importance of hitting pause when you don't know which direction to take. when you're doubtful about which way to go, don't go. just be patient, be still, and wait for a clear answer before you take off running in any old random direction.
i like it. often times i feel like i'm the turtle in the race. i feel like, why am i not just pushing forward like so-and-so? why can't i just move like such-and-such? well, this advice of "when in doubt, don't" nudges me and reminds me that maybe i'm supposed to be still for a minute so that i can make the right move instead of moving for movement's sake. there's nothing wrong with pausing if you're doing it to make your next move your best move.
but the danger in that advice lies in the fact that some of us are perpetual doubters. self-doubters. others-doubters. debby-downer-doubters. now that particular brand of doubt is dangerous. for instance the other day i was given some positive feedback about myself that surprised me given its source and timing. it also caused me to realize that in underestimating my own potential for leadership and growth, i had been exercising self doubt and may have blocked off some nice opportunities for myself. despite being proud of my accomplishments i admit that i often strain to see what others see in me. i hate to admit it because i know its silly not to see yourself as capable of doing anything you put your mind to. but i still have to say, i do it more often than i should.
to not take a risk or put yourself out there due to self-doubt means missing out on a wealth of opportunities--for personal development as you learn more about what you can do, if put to the test, and even for personal development as a result of productive failures.
while in some areas of life the advice, "when in doubt, don't" can ring true, when the doubt you're experiencing threatens to impede your own personal growth or advancement just be sure not to get stuck on pause.