I finally decided to write a post about overcoming insecurities and it’s been a very long time in the making. And if you’re reading this right now, then at some point in time or another, you’ve wondered about how to stop being insecure and get on with your life.
The reality is this. Insecurity can paralyze you to the point where you are afraid to do just about anything and it can take you to the other extreme where you get angry and overreact to the simplest of things. This not only causes you to miss out on many amazing things in life, but it can also destroy your relationships and scar you for life. Fortunately, life doesn’t have to be this way, and this is where I come into the picture. In this article, I’ll show you a simple 4 step process on how to deal with insecurity and kick it to the curb. But let’s start with some facts, first and foremost.
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Some Truths About Insecurity
Everybody has some form of insecurity or another. It’s just that some people are better at handling or hiding their insecurities than other people are. Insecurity usually involves uncertainty or anxiety about yourself, a lack of confidence, or a fear of danger or threat to your well-being. It is very common for people to worry about what other people think of them. Examples include saying things such as “I’m too ugly for anyone to find me sexy!”, “Everyone is going to stare at me!”, or “They’ll never choose me because I’m just not good enough!”.
Many relationships have been destroyed because of insecurity. Jealousy has filled people’s hearts with so much rage th
at they have committed all types of horrors against their partners or loved ones, only to regret it afterwards.
I’m not one to bash social media, but let’s be honest here. Social media hasn’t exactly made it easier for us to lose our insecurities. People tend to get approvals from social media through likes, tweets, retweets or even comments. And when people don’t get what they want, they feel rejected, disappointed, and even more insecure.
Television, magazines or other news outlets also like to showcase a lot of people with “physically attractive bodies” or people who are living the life of the rich and the famous. On the one hand, this can leave us with envy and the want to improve ourselves. But on the other hand, it can leave us even more bitter and wanting to crawl under a rock and hide.
The bottom line is that you don’t have to suffer and be miserable because of insecurity. Fighting insecurity begins with a willingness to face what you usually do not want to face. That means having the courage to focus on what you’re struggling with and making a conscious effort to get rid of it. What do I mean by this? I’m glad you asked. This is the focus of the next section.
4 Solid Steps on How to Deal with Insecurity
You can achieve success if you learn how to overcome insecurity using the following 4 step process:
STEP 1: Identify behaviors which exhibit insecurity
Typical insecure behaviors include:
- Always having a bad temper – This could be a sign that you’re not feeling great about yourself.
- Always being on the defensive – Getting defensive all the time signals that your mind is on your insecurities instead of on the world around you. This is a clear indicator that there is a need for you to learn how to overcome insecure tendencies.
- Trying to control everything – If you have a relentless urge to control everything around you, then chances are you might be feeling a little vulnerable and insecure.
- Accepting less than you deserve – If you don’t think much of yourself, you will also expect other people to view you in the same manner, and you will accept it when they do.
- Pushing other people away – If you continuously push people away from you and you find yourself unable to get close to anybody, it’s probably because you feel that you’re not worth getting to know and you expect someone to break your heart or betray you.
- Constantly talking about yourself – If you can’t listen to anybody else’s problems without bringing up yourself, people might think you’re overconfident when in fact you’re insecure.
- Insisting on being the center of attention – You may feel that your own approval and opinion isn’t good enough and therefore constantly need other people to tell you that you’re great in order to believe it.
- Putting other people down – You may be dragging other people down just to make yourself feel better.
STEP 2: Recognize the root cause of those behaviors/obstacles which get in the way of correcting them
The obstacles which result in insecurities tend to revolve around five root causes. These are:
- past criticisms which were received from friends, parents or other relatives when you were growing up – You internalized these criticisms and allowed them to linger on in your head indefinitely.
- A constant need for approval – You depend heavily on approval from others to feel worthy and beautiful. And as I mentioned before, social media, TV and magazines do not make this any easier.
- Not trusting others – You stop trusting that others will have your back or accept you for who you are. You expect them to be always working against you or to even hurt you.
- Failing to accept things about yourself – You hate that you’re overweight, have stretch marks, or that you’re lazy, and constantly live with this shame. You’re simply uncomfortable with the real you.
- Having a negative self-image – You compare yourself to others and criticize yourself for not being more like them. In your mind, you’re just not good enough, and this causes you to have a negative self-image.
STEP 3: Observe when you are exhibiting insecure behaviors and match them to their root cause
This will help you to pinpoint which obstacle is causing you to feel and act that way. To facilitate this process, ask yourself questions such as: “Why am I behaving this way?”, “Is it because of past criticisms that are lingering in my head, an unwavering need for approval, my mistrust of other people, my failure to accept things about myself or my negative self-image?”.
STEP 4: Address the behaviors based on their root cause
This may be done in the following manner:
- Forgiving and letting go of your past. If your insecurity results from past criticisms, start to forgive the source of that criticism, whether it be a friend, parent or other relative. Appreciate the fact that they were driven by their own insecurities and behaved imperfectly as a result. They were not right in what they did, but try to understand it, nonetheless. Forgive them for their bad behavior, because holding on to resentment has not been helping you. Then let go of the past, one step at a time.
- Giving self-approval. If you find yourself depending on someone else’s approval in the form of a praise, attention or like, stop right there and give yourself your own approval. You do not need anyone else’s approval but your own. Accept yourself and love yourself completely. That’s all you need!
- Trusting in the moment. If you find that your mistrust of others is what is causing you to behave a certain way, then stop relying on them. Begin trusting yourself and believing that everything will be okay. Meditating on this can also be very helpful.
- Accepting yourself for who you are. If you recognize that your behavior results from failing to accept things about yourself, then pause for a moment and take a self-assessment. Notice which parts of yourself you don’t like, both your body and your inner self. Look at these parts and see if you can send them love. See them for the imperfect parts of you that they are, deserving of love just as a friend who is “imperfect” also deserves love. Think about how you would want this “imperfect” friend to be treated and treat yourself that way. Give yourself assurance and compassion. Embrace all the parts of you and see the beauty in them.
- Embracing non-comparison. If you are always comparing yourself to others, just stop! This is doing you no good, but only harming you. Be happy for their successes and joy but recognize that they are on a completely different path from you. Believe that you can be happy and successful too, but in your own time, and on your own path.
Your life may not be where you want it to be, but that doesn’t mean it has to remain that way. YOU can choose to have a better life once you actively take steps towards that eventuality. An action plan to resolve how to not be insecure is no different from one that deals with any other problem that you may face. You simply need to find a process that works, apply it, and stick to it.
Although there are many reasons why you may have an insecurity how to overcome it boils down to following the four-step process outlined above. This involves identifying insecure behaviors, recognizing the root cause of those behaviors, matching insecure behaviors to their root cause, and addressing the behaviors based on their root cause.
I have learnt how to stop being insecure by applying the above method. I am now more accepting of myself and trust and love myself more. I hope it will also help you to accept yourself for who you are, love yourself and to find contentment and peace.
As usual, I would love to hear your thoughts on my articles. Please feel free to leave a comment below.