How to Overcome Your Deep Insecurity of “I Feel Stupid”

self-help

Do you often say to yourself “I feel stupid”, “I am dumb” or “I am so slow”…even though a part of you knows that this can’t be true?

Do you feel stupid and slow because you can’t do Math, handle numbers or once had poor exam scores (even though you have graduated years and years ago)?

Because you believe that you are “stupid”, “slow” or “dumb”, do you then tell yourself that you are “not capable”, “good enough” or “such a failure in life”?

If you have answered “yes” to the above questions, you probably go into anxiety whenever your mind spins the negative story of “I feel stupid/slow/dumb”.

Anxiety show up with chronic symptoms such as tightness in the throat, pressure in the stomach or even a hanging grey cloud that envelopes your head.

With the story of “I am not good enough” playing loudly in your ears like a broken recorder, you find it difficult to focus on anything else . Your brains stop working, paralysis sets in and  you go into panic mode. And the more you panic, the more you are unable to perform the task at hand.

Soon, the story that plays in your mind becomes more and more dramatic and you sink into misery, believing that you are pretty much a failure and will never amount to much in life.

And if you are aware enough, you’d realise that the story of “I feel stupid” could have originated at a time when you were in school. Hence, even though you have graduated years ago, the “trauma” of not scoring well academically still haunts you till today.

Common Negative Consequences from the Insecurity of “I feel Stupid/Dumb/Slow”

Clearly, there are negative consequences to holding on to the “stupid/dumb/slow” belief. I compiled a list in my notes that I had gathered from working with clients…

* Hold yourself back from pursuing opportunities,

* Can’t speak up or in front of an audience for fear of looking stupid or slow,

* Keep beating yourself up for being stupid, dumb or slow and unable to try anything new,

* Short-change yourself because you believe that you are inferior or second best,

* Give power away to others because you are the less intelligent one.

* Unable to reach your full potential for years.

* Result in numbness, apathy or even depression.

The stakes to wellness are obviously high!

My Recent Discovery

Recently, I found myself handling more and more clients with situations on “I feel slow”, “I feel stupid” and “I feel dumb”.

From working today, we found out that the root belief came from “I am not good enough because I can’t do this subject”. In particular, Maths was cited as the one they had faced the greatest challenges with.

What’s most interesting to me is that one after another, client situations started to surface after I had just released an old belief of “I am slow” myself. And one such client was Deborah (not her real name).

How Deborah’s “I feel Stupid” Story Came From Her Inability to Be Faster in Math

Deborah has had low self-confidence ever since she can remember. However, she did not fully grasp how her insecurity has been affecting her until we started working together.  It has pretty much affected her in her work and social life.

As she constantly plays herself down, Deborah has been unable to put herself out there. She found herself falling behind her peers. They were getting promoted a lot faster and earning higher pay, even though she has been working hard.

Through our session together, she realised that whenever she was insecure, she would feel anxious. Interestingly, her anxiety has a story of “I feel stupid” to it.

When Deborah traced back in time, her story originated at a time when she was in high school and trying to learn Math from her “genius brother”. He was always the brilliant one, she said. Because her genius brother had found her slow or slower, he called her “stupid”.

Deborah even found it ironical that she had the belief “I feel stupid” because she eventually did find herself enjoying Math and doing computations. She is also fairly competent in what she does. Yet, the belief “I feel stupid” had stopped her from pursuing opportunities for more than a decade. That’s a darn long time of being held back by a limiting belief! As mentioned, it cost her financially!

My Story of “I am Slow”

Not too long ago, while attempting to learn a hedging strategy for investments,  I found myself uttering “I am slow”. I got into a fluster because I was relatively new to this strategy, which involved making computations with various sets of numbers. I started to sweat just thinking about the possibility of losing money if I make an error.

Well, my husband pointed out my overreaction as something unwarranted; which at first, I did not take his comments positively. (It can be infuriating to have your spouse point out something unflattering about you, don’t you think?) Anyway, sitting back and reflecting a while later , I realised that what he said he was true.

It’s subtle but it’s definitely there: the belief “I am slow”. It finally dawned on me that I have had it for a long time but had not done enough to address it. With the understanding that holding on to this belief was no longer serving my highest good, I worked on releasing it.

Almost immediately, I found myself helping more clients who reported to having low self-confidence and who had unresolved negative emotions for not getting ideal scores back in their school days.

How Comparing to Others Anchors in the “I Feel Stupid/Dumb/Slow” Belief

Comparison is the thief of peace and joy. Back then, I had become convinced that I was slow when I was compared to my “efficient cousin” who was a year older than me. In Deborah’s case, it was always being compared to “genius brother”. For Janice, it was her “smart sister” and the sinking feeling that she would always be “second best”.

Invariably, when someone authoritative in our family measures our performance against others and rates us to be inferior, we do the same to ourselves. We conclude that we are indeed, slower, dumber and more stupid in Math….which eventually becomes we are slow, dumb and stupid…and not just in Maths but in all aspects of our lives too.

“What a failure I am”, we say to ourselves.

Here’s the thing: Someone may have once called us “stupid, slow or dumb”…but the number of things we mentally call ourselves “stupid, slow or dumb” could be more than 100 times! It happens when we can’t let go of the disappointment that we feel about ourselves. So on and on, we put ourselves down. As it is often said, we are our greatest enemies!

Is Your Low Confidence Coming from an Inability to Let Go of Getting Poor Exam Scores in School?

Chances are if you have low self-confidence and often label yourself as “stupid/slow/dumb”, you’d never get far in life.

All in, we need to work on shattering old beliefs that are not true. That we are “dumb”, “stupid” or “slow” is false. Just because we couldn’t do Math when we were young or not as fast as someone else does not make us “dumb”, “stupid” or “slow”. Intelligence is not based on academic results alone.

Also, how well we do in life is not solely dependent on school grades if at all. Think about the successful people in the world, many of whom dropped out from school. Neither have they ever topped their class.

Those who approached me had wanted to work on low confidence issues. Which led us to discover that their deep rooted anxiety about themselves were merely the symptoms but the cause came from the root belief of “I am stupid/dumb/slow” because “I was not good in a school subject such as Math”. They had formed the belief because they did not know any better back then. No one told them otherwise. Nor did they receive positive encouragement.

Reflecting on this is making me wonder if more of us have the same negative belief but are not consciously aware that it is affecting us somehow. Should you be reading this post with great interest, it’s likely that you or someone you know is having this issue.

How to overcome the deep insecurity and anxiety from "I feel stupid", "I feel dumb" or "I am slow"

Hence, if you’d like to find out, here’s what can be done….

1. Ask yourself If your mind is often saying “I am stupid/dumb/slow” or “I feel stupid/dumb/slow”.

2. If it is, tune in
on how this is making you feel and what is the emotional story like.

3. Go quiet and allow your unconscious mind to show you the picture of a time in the past where you’ve had the same feeling and emotional story. It may have something to do with a school subject, or it may not. It may have been someone who compared you to someone smarter, for instance. Or you failing to top your class.

And if there is something negative that has come up for you, take appropriate action to release the disruption (try EFT tapping) and install a new positive belief.

Transform “I feel Stupid” to Confidence!

If you have attempted to release and overcome the insecurity of “I feel stupid/dumb/slow” on your own but have not gotten results or made much of a headway, it’s likely that your negative patterns are more deeply embedded than you’ve realised.

Going back to the past to address unresolved emotions and limiting beliefs involves a therapeutic process. The process works, as I have seen it happen again and again with the people I have worked with. You are addressing issues at root cause. When you integrate a new belief into your energy system, it brings about transformative results from the inside-out!

Obviously, a belief such as…

I am smart
I am good enough.
I am capable enough

serves you a lot better!

You’d want to install the new belief at the subconscious level, so that true confidence can set in! Don’t procrastinate any longer. This issue is potentially costing you emotionally, mentally and financially. Just imagine how free you’d be without your old story of “I feel stupid” and the dreams you can conquer!

Love and Abundance Always,
Evelyn Lim

P.S. (Contact me if you need my help with clearing negative beliefs at root cause!)

P.S.S. Share Your Comments, Story or Thoughts in the section below.

The post How to Overcome Your Deep Insecurity of “I Feel Stupid” appeared first on Abundance Coach for Women in Business | Evelyn Lim.

How to Overcome Your Deep Insecurity of “I Feel Stupid”

self-help

Do you often say to yourself “I feel stupid”, “I am dumb” or “I am so slow”…even though a part of you knows that this can’t be true?

Do you feel stupid and slow because you can’t do Math, handle numbers or once had poor exam scores (even though you have graduated years and years ago)?

Because you believe that you are “stupid”, “slow” or “dumb”, do you then tell yourself that you are “not capable”, “good enough” or “such a failure in life”?

If you have answered “yes” to the above questions, you probably go into anxiety whenever your mind spins the negative story of “I feel stupid/slow/dumb”.

Anxiety show up with chronic symptoms such as tightness in the throat, pressure in the stomach or even a hanging grey cloud that envelopes your head.

With the story of “I am not good enough” playing loudly in your ears like a broken recorder, you find it difficult to focus on anything else . Your brains stop working, paralysis sets in and  you go into panic mode. And the more you panic, the more you are unable to perform the task at hand.

Soon, the story that plays in your mind becomes more and more dramatic and you sink into misery, believing that you are pretty much a failure and will never amount to much in life.

And if you are aware enough, you’d realise that the story of “I feel stupid” could have originated at a time when you were in school. Hence, even though you have graduated years ago, the “trauma” of not scoring well academically still haunts you till today.

Common Negative Consequences from the Insecurity of “I feel Stupid/Dumb/Slow”

Clearly, there are negative consequences to holding on to the “stupid/dumb/slow” belief. I compiled a list in my notes that I had gathered from working with clients…

* Hold yourself back from pursuing opportunities,

* Can’t speak up or in front of an audience for fear of looking stupid or slow,

* Keep beating yourself up for being stupid, dumb or slow and unable to try anything new,

* Short-change yourself because you believe that you are inferior or second best,

* Give power away to others because you are the less intelligent one.

* Unable to reach your full potential for years.

* Result in numbness, apathy or even depression.

The stakes to wellness are obviously high!

My Recent Discovery

Recently, I found myself handling more and more clients with situations on “I feel slow”, “I feel stupid” and “I feel dumb”.

From working today, we found out that the root belief came from “I am not good enough because I can’t do this subject”. In particular, Maths was cited as the one they had faced the greatest challenges with.

What’s most interesting to me is that one after another, client situations started to surface after I had just released an old belief of “I am slow” myself. And one such client was Deborah (not her real name).

How Deborah’s “I feel Stupid” Story Came From Her Inability to Be Faster in Math

Deborah has had low self-confidence ever since she can remember. However, she did not fully grasp how her insecurity has been affecting her until we started working together.  It has pretty much affected her in her work and social life.

As she constantly plays herself down, Deborah has been unable to put herself out there. She found herself falling behind her peers. They were getting promoted a lot faster and earning higher pay, even though she has been working hard.

Through our session together, she realised that whenever she was insecure, she would feel anxious. Interestingly, her anxiety has a story of “I feel stupid” to it.

When Deborah traced back in time, her story originated at a time when she was in high school and trying to learn Math from her “genius brother”. He was always the brilliant one, she said. Because her genius brother had found her slow or slower, he called her “stupid”.

Deborah even found it ironical that she had the belief “I feel stupid” because she eventually did find herself enjoying Math and doing computations. She is also fairly competent in what she does. Yet, the belief “I feel stupid” had stopped her from pursuing opportunities for more than a decade. That’s a darn long time of being held back by a limiting belief! As mentioned, it cost her financially!

My Story of “I am Slow”

Not too long ago, while attempting to learn a hedging strategy for investments,  I found myself uttering “I am slow”. I got into a fluster because I was relatively new to this strategy, which involved making computations with various sets of numbers. I started to sweat just thinking about the possibility of losing money if I make an error.

Well, my husband pointed out my overreaction as something unwarranted; which at first, I did not take his comments positively. (It can be infuriating to have your spouse point out something unflattering about you, don’t you think?) Anyway, sitting back and reflecting a while later , I realised that what he said he was true.

It’s subtle but it’s definitely there: the belief “I am slow”. It finally dawned on me that I have had it for a long time but had not done enough to address it. With the understanding that holding on to this belief was no longer serving my highest good, I worked on releasing it.

Almost immediately, I found myself helping more clients who reported to having low self-confidence and who had unresolved negative emotions for not getting ideal scores back in their school days.

How Comparing to Others Anchors in the “I Feel Stupid/Dumb/Slow” Belief

Comparison is the thief of peace and joy. Back then, I had become convinced that I was slow when I was compared to my “efficient cousin” who was a year older than me. In Deborah’s case, it was always being compared to “genius brother”. For Janice, it was her “smart sister” and the sinking feeling that she would always be “second best”.

Invariably, when someone authoritative in our family measures our performance against others and rates us to be inferior, we do the same to ourselves. We conclude that we are indeed, slower, dumber and more stupid in Math….which eventually becomes we are slow, dumb and stupid…and not just in Maths but in all aspects of our lives too.

“What a failure I am”, we say to ourselves.

Here’s the thing: Someone may have once called us “stupid, slow or dumb”…but the number of things we mentally call ourselves “stupid, slow or dumb” could be more than 100 times! It happens when we can’t let go of the disappointment that we feel about ourselves. So on and on, we put ourselves down. As it is often said, we are our greatest enemies!

Is Your Low Confidence Coming from an Inability to Let Go of Getting Poor Exam Scores in School?

Chances are if you have low self-confidence and often label yourself as “stupid/slow/dumb”, you’d never get far in life.

All in, we need to work on shattering old beliefs that are not true. That we are “dumb”, “stupid” or “slow” is false. Just because we couldn’t do Math when we were young or not as fast as someone else does not make us “dumb”, “stupid” or “slow”. Intelligence is not based on academic results alone.

Also, how well we do in life is not solely dependent on school grades if at all. Think about the successful people in the world, many of whom dropped out from school. Neither have they ever topped their class.

Those who approached me had wanted to work on low confidence issues. Which led us to discover that their deep rooted anxiety about themselves were merely the symptoms but the cause came from the root belief of “I am stupid/dumb/slow” because “I was not good in a school subject such as Math”. They had formed the belief because they did not know any better back then. No one told them otherwise. Nor did they receive positive encouragement.

Reflecting on this is making me wonder if more of us have the same negative belief but are not consciously aware that it is affecting us somehow. Should you be reading this post with great interest, it’s likely that you or someone you know is having this issue.

How to overcome the deep insecurity and anxiety from "I feel stupid", "I feel dumb" or "I am slow"

Hence, if you’d like to find out, here’s what can be done….

1. Ask yourself If your mind is often saying “I am stupid/dumb/slow” or “I feel stupid/dumb/slow”.

2. If it is, tune in
on how this is making you feel and what is the emotional story like.

3. Go quiet and allow your unconscious mind to show you the picture of a time in the past where you’ve had the same feeling and emotional story. It may have something to do with a school subject, or it may not. It may have been someone who compared you to someone smarter, for instance. Or you failing to top your class.

And if there is something negative that has come up for you, take appropriate action to release the disruption (try EFT tapping) and install a new positive belief.

Transform “I feel Stupid” to Confidence!

If you have attempted to release and overcome the insecurity of “I feel stupid/dumb/slow” on your own but have not gotten results or made much of a headway, it’s likely that your negative patterns are more deeply embedded than you’ve realised.

Going back to the past to address unresolved emotions and limiting beliefs involves a therapeutic process. The process works, as I have seen it happen again and again with the people I have worked with. You are addressing issues at root cause. When you integrate a new belief into your energy system, it brings about transformative results from the inside-out!

Obviously, a belief such as…

I am smart
I am good enough.
I am capable enough

serves you a lot better!

You’d want to install the new belief at the subconscious level, so that true confidence can set in! Don’t procrastinate any longer. This issue is potentially costing you emotionally, mentally and financially. Just imagine how free you’d be without your old story of “I feel stupid” and the dreams you can conquer!

Love and Abundance Always,
Evelyn Lim

P.S. (Contact me if you need my help with clearing negative beliefs at root cause!)

P.S.S. Share Your Comments, Story or Thoughts in the section below.

The post How to Overcome Your Deep Insecurity of “I Feel Stupid” appeared first on Abundance Coach for Women in Business | Evelyn Lim.

Why Social Skills Are the Shortcut to Happiness

self-help

People today are putting more conscious effort into figuring out what makes them happy and pursing that happiness. And there are many ideas out there about happiness, coming from a variety of sources: parents, teachers, friends, books, articles, media and advertising.

But I think that a lot of these ideas miss the mark; which is why I’d like to share my own perspective on the importance of one key asset in achieving happiness: your social skills. I believe they matter and they can benefit you so much that I deem good social skills a veritable shortcut to happiness.

Relationships as the Main Pillar of Happiness

Over the past decades there has been a lot of research in the field of psychology about the factors that make us happy. And the one that constantly stands out is our relationships with others. Individuals with quality relationships, who feel loved and appreciated, and have an active social life, are typically the happiest out there.

This makes perfect sense considering that we are social animals, who’ve always lived in some sort of social milieu, either a band, or a tribe, or a social group within a bigger town or city. And social cooperation has been essential in our survival and progress as a species.

social skillsPsychologist and neuroscientist Matthew D. Lieberman really drives this point home in his book, Social: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Connect.

For instance, he argues that what our brains do by default when they don’t have any particular task is to contemplate social situations and examine the social world; which shows the central role that social relationships play in our lives. Truly, there is no denying their importance.

The Best Path to Good Relationships Is Not What Most People Think

However, most people are drawn into poor views about the ways to get respect, appreciation and good relationships.

Society in general has taught us that the best ways to get such things are by being wealthy, or having a respectable profession, or following the latest trends. And so, a plethora of people are chasing these things, hoping they will get them the kind of fulfilling human connections they yearn for.

I find it particularly interesting to discuss with folks who wanna make a lot of money. There are lots of reasons why many people wanna be rich. Through money they seek experiences, variety, freedom or security.

But digging deeper into their motivations, I find that, above all, most believe money is the top way to earn the appreciation of others, in order to feel good about themselves and be able to build fulfilling relationships.

It’s such an illusion! Both my coaching and social experiences have showed me over and over that: not only is money not a necessity to be appreciated, but chasing money is the long and inexact road to appreciation. The power of wealth to nurture good relationships has been vastly exaggerated by the rampant consumer culture we live in.

Really, the most popular ways to gain appreciation, considering the time and effort they require (a lot), the amount of respect they earn you (often not that much), and the type of respect they earn you (often superficial and fleeting), don’t amount to good investments.

Social Skills Are a Much Better Path

I believe the methods described above constitute the long, roundabout path to appreciation and good relationships. The straightest and shortest path is in building sharp social skills.

You see, when you have good social skills you are able:

  • To express yourself in an articulate, convincing and alluring way.
  • To talk with a wide range of people, on a wide range of topics.
  • To empathize well will people, to understand their motivations and views.
  • To know how to adapt to others while staying true to yourself at the same time.
  • To show social intelligence and navigate complex social dynamics.
  • To manage your emotions well in social situations.

This makes social skills the direct and the best tool to connect with people, make a positive impression and nurture good relationships. All else takes longer to acquire and works less effectively.

Put two people at, say, a party, one who is a successful lawyer with lots of money, wearing a trendy suit, but with average social skills, and another who is a person with an average job, average income and average clothes, but really good social skills, and I guarantee you this second person will blow the first one out of the water in terms of likability.

While having money, working in a respectable job and being fashionable all have their merits and benefits, my point is that if you want great relationships, you should focus on developing your social skills above all. They will help you much more than these things.

Social skills take some work to improve as well, but the return on investment is much better. And fortunately, there are lots of resources out there to help you, from books and articles to classes and coaching programs.

With this in mind, I recommend you get onboard my free social success newsletter, to receive regular practical advice from me on sharpening your social skills, directly into your Inbox.

When you join, you’ll also get instant, free access to an instructional presentation in which I’ll show you my proven formula for becoming socially confident.

Go here to join the newsletter right now.

Life has a lot to offer. And social skills are a key tool to help you collect much of its fruits. Sharpen your social skills, get out there and use them, and I promise you that your happiness will soar.

Why Social Skills Are the Shortcut to Happiness

self-help

People today are putting more conscious effort into figuring out what makes them happy and pursing that happiness. And there are many ideas out there about happiness, coming from a variety of sources: parents, teachers, friends, books, articles, media and advertising.

But I think that a lot of these ideas miss the mark; which is why I’d like to share my own perspective on the importance of one key asset in achieving happiness: your social skills. I believe they matter and they can benefit you so much that I deem good social skills a veritable shortcut to happiness.

Relationships as the Main Pillar of Happiness

Over the past decades there has been a lot of research in the field of psychology about the factors that make us happy. And the one that constantly stands out is our relationships with others. Individuals with quality relationships, who feel loved and appreciated, and have an active social life, are typically the happiest out there.

This makes perfect sense considering that we are social animals, who’ve always lived in some sort of social milieu, either a band, or a tribe, or a social group within a bigger town or city. And social cooperation has been essential in our survival and progress as a species.

social skillsPsychologist and neuroscientist Matthew D. Lieberman really drives this point home in his book, Social: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Connect.

For instance, he argues that what our brains do by default when they don’t have any particular task is to contemplate social situations and examine the social world; which shows the central role that social relationships play in our lives. Truly, there is no denying their importance.

The Best Path to Good Relationships Is Not What Most People Think

However, most people are drawn into poor views about the ways to get respect, appreciation and good relationships.

Society in general has taught us that the best ways to get such things are by being wealthy, or having a respectable profession, or following the latest trends. And so, a plethora of people are chasing these things, hoping they will get them the kind of fulfilling human connections they yearn for.

I find it particularly interesting to discuss with folks who wanna make a lot of money. There are lots of reasons why many people wanna be rich. Through money they seek experiences, variety, freedom or security.

But digging deeper into their motivations, I find that, above all, most believe money is the top way to earn the appreciation of others, in order to feel good about themselves and be able to build fulfilling relationships.

It’s such an illusion! Both my coaching and social experiences have showed me over and over that: not only is money not a necessity to be appreciated, but chasing money is the long and inexact road to appreciation. The power of wealth to nurture good relationships has been vastly exaggerated by the rampant consumer culture we live in.

Really, the most popular ways to gain appreciation, considering the time and effort they require (a lot), the amount of respect they earn you (often not that much), and the type of respect they earn you (often superficial and fleeting), don’t amount to good investments.

Social Skills Are a Much Better Path

I believe the methods described above constitute the long, roundabout path to appreciation and good relationships. The straightest and shortest path is in building sharp social skills.

You see, when you have good social skills you are able:

  • To express yourself in an articulate, convincing and alluring way.
  • To talk with a wide range of people, on a wide range of topics.
  • To empathize well will people, to understand their motivations and views.
  • To know how to adapt to others while staying true to yourself at the same time.
  • To show social intelligence and navigate complex social dynamics.
  • To manage your emotions well in social situations.

This makes social skills the direct and the best tool to connect with people, make a positive impression and nurture good relationships. All else takes longer to acquire and works less effectively.

Put two people at, say, a party, one who is a successful lawyer with lots of money, wearing a trendy suit, but with average social skills, and another who is a person with an average job, average income and average clothes, but really good social skills, and I guarantee you this second person will blow the first one out of the water in terms of likability.

While having money, working in a respectable job and being fashionable all have their merits and benefits, my point is that if you want great relationships, you should focus on developing your social skills above all. They will help you much more than these things.

Social skills take some work to improve as well, but the return on investment is much better. And fortunately, there are lots of resources out there to help you, from books and articles to classes and coaching programs.

With this in mind, I recommend you get onboard my free social success newsletter, to receive regular practical advice from me on sharpening your social skills, directly into your Inbox.

When you join, you’ll also get instant, free access to an instructional presentation in which I’ll show you my proven formula for becoming socially confident.

Go here to join the newsletter right now.

Life has a lot to offer. And social skills are a key tool to help you collect much of its fruits. Sharpen your social skills, get out there and use them, and I promise you that your happiness will soar.

Why Social Skills Are the Shortcut to Happiness

self-help

People today are putting more conscious effort into figuring out what makes them happy and pursing that happiness. And there are many ideas out there about happiness, coming from a variety of sources: parents, teachers, friends, books, articles, media and advertising.

But I think that a lot of these ideas miss the mark; which is why I’d like to share my own perspective on the importance of one key asset in achieving happiness: your social skills. I believe they matter and they can benefit you so much that I deem good social skills a veritable shortcut to happiness.

Relationships as the Main Pillar of Happiness

Over the past decades there has been a lot of research in the field of psychology about the factors that make us happy. And the one that constantly stands out is our relationships with others. Individuals with quality relationships, who feel loved and appreciated, and have an active social life, are typically the happiest out there.

This makes perfect sense considering that we are social animals, who’ve always lived in some sort of social milieu, either a band, or a tribe, or a social group within a bigger town or city. And social cooperation has been essential in our survival and progress as a species.

social skillsPsychologist and neuroscientist Matthew D. Lieberman really drives this point home in his book, Social: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Connect.

For instance, he argues that what our brains do by default when they don’t have any particular task is to contemplate social situations and examine the social world; which shows the central role that social relationships play in our lives. Truly, there is no denying their importance.

The Best Path to Good Relationships Is Not What Most People Think

However, most people are drawn into poor views about the ways to get respect, appreciation and good relationships.

Society in general has taught us that the best ways to get such things are by being wealthy, or having a respectable profession, or following the latest trends. And so, a plethora of people are chasing these things, hoping they will get them the kind of fulfilling human connections they yearn for.

I find it particularly interesting to discuss with folks who wanna make a lot of money. There are lots of reasons why many people wanna be rich. Through money they seek experiences, variety, freedom or security.

But digging deeper into their motivations, I find that, above all, most believe money is the top way to earn the appreciation of others, in order to feel good about themselves and be able to build fulfilling relationships.

It’s such an illusion! Both my coaching and social experiences have showed me over and over that: not only is money not a necessity to be appreciated, but chasing money is the long and inexact road to appreciation. The power of wealth to nurture good relationships has been vastly exaggerated by the rampant consumer culture we live in.

Really, the most popular ways to gain appreciation, considering the time and effort they require (a lot), the amount of respect they earn you (often not that much), and the type of respect they earn you (often superficial and fleeting), don’t amount to good investments.

Social Skills Are a Much Better Path

I believe the methods described above constitute the long, roundabout path to appreciation and good relationships. The straightest and shortest path is in building sharp social skills.

You see, when you have good social skills you are able:

  • To express yourself in an articulate, convincing and alluring way.
  • To talk with a wide range of people, on a wide range of topics.
  • To empathize well will people, to understand their motivations and views.
  • To know how to adapt to others while staying true to yourself at the same time.
  • To show social intelligence and navigate complex social dynamics.
  • To manage your emotions well in social situations.

This makes social skills the direct and the best tool to connect with people, make a positive impression and nurture good relationships. All else takes longer to acquire and works less effectively.

Put two people at, say, a party, one who is a successful lawyer with lots of money, wearing a trendy suit, but with average social skills, and another who is a person with an average job, average income and average clothes, but really good social skills, and I guarantee you this second person will blow the first one out of the water in terms of likability.

While having money, working in a respectable job and being fashionable all have their merits and benefits, my point is that if you want great relationships, you should focus on developing your social skills above all. They will help you much more than these things.

Social skills take some work to improve as well, but the return on investment is much better. And fortunately, there are lots of resources out there to help you, from books and articles to classes and coaching programs.

With this in mind, I recommend you get onboard my free social success newsletter, to receive regular practical advice from me on sharpening your social skills, directly into your Inbox.

When you join, you’ll also get instant, free access to an instructional presentation in which I’ll show you my proven formula for becoming socially confident.

Go here to join the newsletter right now.

Life has a lot to offer. And social skills are a key tool to help you collect much of its fruits. Sharpen your social skills, get out there and use them, and I promise you that your happiness will soar.

How to Overcome Your Deep Insecurity of “I Feel Stupid”

self-help

Do you often say to yourself “I feel stupid”, “I am dumb” or “I am so slow”…even though a part of you knows that this can’t be true?

Do you feel stupid and slow because you can’t do Math, handle numbers or once had poor exam scores (even though you have graduated years and years ago)?

Because you believe that you are “stupid”, “slow” or “dumb”, do you then tell yourself that you are “not capable”, “good enough” or “such a failure in life”?

If you have answered “yes” to the above questions, you probably go into anxiety whenever your mind spins the negative story of “I feel stupid/slow/dumb”.

Anxiety show up with chronic symptoms such as tightness in the throat, pressure in the stomach or even a hanging grey cloud that envelopes your head.

With the story of “I am not good enough” playing loudly in your ears like a broken recorder, you find it difficult to focus on anything else . Your brains stop working, paralysis sets in and  you go into panic mode. And the more you panic, the more you are unable to perform the task at hand.

Soon, the story that plays in your mind becomes more and more dramatic and you sink into misery, believing that you are pretty much a failure and will never amount to much in life.

And if you are aware enough, you’d realise that the story of “I feel stupid” could have originated at a time when you were in school. Hence, even though you have graduated years ago, the “trauma” of not scoring well academically still haunts you till today.

Common Negative Consequences from the Insecurity of “I feel Stupid/Dumb/Slow”

Clearly, there are negative consequences to holding on to the “stupid/dumb/slow” belief. I compiled a list in my notes that I had gathered from working with clients…

* Hold yourself back from pursuing opportunities,

* Can’t speak up or in front of an audience for fear of looking stupid or slow,

* Keep beating yourself up for being stupid, dumb or slow and unable to try anything new,

* Short-change yourself because you believe that you are inferior or second best,

* Give power away to others because you are the less intelligent one.

* Unable to reach your full potential for years.

* Result in numbness, apathy or even depression.

The stakes to wellness are obviously high!

My Recent Discovery

Recently, I found myself handling more and more clients with situations on “I feel slow”, “I feel stupid” and “I feel dumb”.

From working today, we found out that the root belief came from “I am not good enough because I can’t do this subject”. In particular, Maths was cited as the one they had faced the greatest challenges with.

What’s most interesting to me is that one after another, client situations started to surface after I had just released an old belief of “I am slow” myself. And one such client was Deborah (not her real name).

How Deborah’s “I feel Stupid” Story Came From Her Inability to Be Faster in Math

Deborah has had low self-confidence ever since she can remember. However, she did not fully grasp how her insecurity has been affecting her until we started working together.  It has pretty much affected her in her work and social life.

As she constantly plays herself down, Deborah has been unable to put herself out there. She found herself falling behind her peers. They were getting promoted a lot faster and earning higher pay, even though she has been working hard.

Through our session together, she realised that whenever she was insecure, she would feel anxious. Interestingly, her anxiety has a story of “I feel stupid” to it.

When Deborah traced back in time, her story originated at a time when she was in high school and trying to learn Math from her “genius brother”. He was always the brilliant one, she said. Because her genius brother had found her slow or slower, he called her “stupid”.

Deborah even found it ironical that she had the belief “I feel stupid” because she eventually did find herself enjoying Math and doing computations. She is also fairly competent in what she does. Yet, the belief “I feel stupid” had stopped her from pursuing opportunities for more than a decade. That’s a darn long time of being held back by a limiting belief! As mentioned, it cost her financially!

My Story of “I am Slow”

Not too long ago, while attempting to learn a hedging strategy for managing investment portfolio risk,  I found myself uttering “I am slow”. I got into a fluster because I was relatively new to this strategy, which involved making computations with various sets of numbers and because there would be a financial impact if I make an error.

My husband pointed out my overreaction as something unwarranted; which at first, I did not take his comments positively. (It can be infuriating to have your spouse point out something unflattering about you, don’t you think?) Anyway, sitting back and reflecting a while later , I realised that what he said he was true.

It’s subtle but it’s definitely there: the belief “I am slow”. It finally dawned on me that I have had it for a long time but had not done enough to address it. With the understanding that holding on to this belief was no longer serving my highest good, I worked on releasing it with a coach.

I also found it insightful to realise that I have been making up for being “slow” with working hard. My thinking was that with being “slow”, I could need double the time to “get it”. However, while diligence is a good trait to cultivate, I would put myself under unnecessary pressure. Doing hard work mindlessly does not always guarantee results. On the other hand, if I had chosen to relax more, I could have gotten the same job done with a lot more ease. I’d be a lot more effective and efficient!

Well, right after I worked on releasing “I feel slow”, I found myself helping more clients who reported to having low self-confidence and who had unresolved negative emotions for not getting ideal scores back in their school days.

How Comparing to Others Anchors in the “I Feel Stupid/Dumb/Slow” Belief

Comparison is the thief of peace and joy. Back then, I had become convinced that I was slow when I was compared to my “efficient cousin” who was a year older than me. In Deborah’s case, it was always being compared to “genius brother”. For Janice, it was her “smart sister” and the sinking feeling that she would always be “second best”.

Invariably, when someone authoritative in our family measures our performance against others and rates us to be inferior, we do the same to ourselves. We conclude that we are indeed, slower, dumber and more stupid in Math….which eventually becomes we are slow, dumb and stupid…and not just in Maths but in all aspects of our lives too.

“What a failure I am”, we say to ourselves.

Here’s the thing: Someone may have once called us “stupid, slow or dumb”…but the number of things we mentally call ourselves “stupid, slow or dumb” could be more than 100 times! It happens when we can’t let go of the disappointment that we feel about ourselves. So on and on, we put ourselves down. As it is often said, we are our greatest enemies!

Is Your Low Confidence Coming from an Inability to Let Go of Getting Poor Exam Scores in School?

Chances are if you have low self-confidence and often label yourself as “stupid/slow/dumb”, you’d never get far in life.

All in, we need to work on shattering old beliefs that are not true. That we are “dumb”, “stupid” or “slow” is false. Just because we couldn’t do Math when we were young or not as fast as someone else does not make us “dumb”, “stupid” or “slow”. Intelligence is not based on academic results alone.

Also, how well we do in life is not solely dependent on school grades if at all. Think about the successful people in the world, many of whom dropped out from school. Neither have they ever topped their class.

Those who approached me had wanted to work on low confidence issues. Which led us to discover that their deep rooted anxiety about themselves were merely the symptoms but the cause came from the root belief of “I am stupid/dumb/slow” because “I was not good in a school subject such as Math”. They had formed the belief because they did not know any better back then. No one told them otherwise. Nor did they receive positive encouragement.

Reflecting on this is making me wonder if more of us have the same negative belief but are not consciously aware that it is affecting us somehow. Should you be reading this post with great interest, it’s likely that you or someone you know is having this issue.

How to overcome the deep insecurity and anxiety from "I feel stupid", "I feel dumb" or "I am slow"

Hence, if you’d like to find out, here’s what can be done….

1. Ask yourself If your mind is often saying “I am stupid/dumb/slow” or “I feel stupid/dumb/slow”.

2. If it is, tune in
on how this is making you feel and what is the emotional story like.

3. Go quiet and allow your unconscious mind to show you the picture of a time in the past where you’ve had the same feeling and emotional story. It may have something to do with a school subject, or it may not. It may have been someone who compared you to someone smarter, for instance. Or you failing to top your class.

And if there is something negative that has come up for you, take appropriate action to release the disruption (try EFT tapping) and install a new positive belief.

Transform “I feel Stupid” to Confidence! 

If you have attempted to release and overcome the insecurity of “I feel stupid/dumb/slow” on your own but have not gotten results or made much of a headway, it’s likely that your negative patterns are more deeply embedded than you’ve realised.

Going back to the past to address unresolved emotions and limiting beliefs involves a therapeutic process. The process works, as I have seen it happen again and again with the people I have worked with. You are addressing issues at root cause. When you integrate a new belief into your energy system, it brings about transformative results from the inside-out!

Obviously, a belief such as…

I am smart
I am good enough.
I am capable enough

serves you a lot better!

You’d want to install the new belief at the subconscious level, so that true confidence can set in! Don’t procrastinate any longer. This issue is potentially costing you emotionally, mentally and financially. Just imagine how free you’d be without your old story of “I feel stupid” and the dreams you can conquer!

Love and Abundance Always,
Evelyn Lim

P.S. (Contact me if you need my help with clearing negative beliefs at root cause!)

P.S.S. Share Your Comments, Story or Thoughts in the section below.

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