Written by Millionaire’s Digest Team Member: Ed Fetahovic
Founder & Owner of: Mono Chrome View
Millionaire’s Digest Team, Contributor, Art and Photography Writer
Do you ever find yourself faced with some form of uncertainty? Do you find yourself stuck and wondering “am I good enough? ” and “why do I do this?” or “am I getting better at the things I want to achieve?” I’ve been a photographer for two years now and in those two years, I feel like my art has progressed leaps and bounds. But even still I’m always debating with myself as to whether I’m good enough to become a professional, whether it’s worth the dream and am I even progressing day to day? I have self-doubts just like I bet you do too. Sometimes it’s because no one is noticing my work, and other times I tell myself that my works not good enough and that there are way better photographers out there than me. Sometimes my efforts feel like I’ve hit a brick wall and I’m a shadow of my own self, and it feels like there are no clear paths to take or follow, and no matter what I do, I don’t feel like I’m achieving what I’m supposed to be achieving. Do you ever feel like that? If you do, it’s actually a good thing, and certainly, not a reason to give up on your dreams and goals!
I think the biggest hindrance to progression are these thoughts but used in the right way they also become strong and powerful motivators. See what many people fail to realize is that these questions only appear when you’re unsure of something you’re strongly committed to. That uncertainty is you wanting to trudge through unknown territory. These doubtful thoughts only appear when you realize you’re unfamiliar with the landscape so your survival mechanism kicks in and you begin to hear the primitive part of your mind try and protect you from potential risk and harm. We’re creatures of habit in that sense, and that’s not a bad thing, but no man crossed a desert by thinking “Will I make it?” ten days into a planned journey where everything was going right. Of course, self-doubt will always kick in, but I think using self-doubt to drive your achievements is far better than letting it weigh you down, doing that, however, can be a little tough as most of us know.
In my mind the reality of being uncertain is not a negative one, the same thought applies to the concept of risk as well. Risk isn’t a bad thing. It simply means that you’re unsure of an outcome that may or may not benefit/impact you. However, if you can turn risk into a great achievement, then you’ve succeeded, but if you fail to hit the mark and you remain stagnant or digress. The self-doubt enters when you realizes theirs a chance you may go backward or stop moving forward – this, however, is not technically the correct way to look at it in my opinion. The very thought that you might go backward rather than forwards deters our will to try because we review stagnation or digression as failure, which is why many people give up on goals just on this alone. But the effort placed into reaching any milestone goes unnoticed which is the mistake most of us make. Realize that to be where you are now, you’ve needed a cumulative level of experience and you wouldn’t be there without it, which is already an amazing thing. Taking a new risk for progression simply means you’re now learning to add to your cumulative experience which is always a positive no matter what the outcome. If you have to take a few steps back to continue forward be confident that it’s not a bad thing, maybe those few steps taught you something new you didn’t realize before, which lets you progress a little quicker now, that’s always a good thing, right? Just note and accept that the reality is, we can’t always be winning, that would be too easy and we’d learn nothing because we wouldn’t have the time to self-reflect and let things like self-doubt make us reflect. I always remind myself that some of the most successful people in the world today could comfortably say that they’ve had more losses than wins over their lifetime, it’s just that they eventually got good at capitalizing on both the wins and losses which allowed them to achieve their goals over time.
The final note I want to share with you from my experiences so far is to allow yourself the time to achieve. Nothing will happen overnight, sometimes it will take all of your willpower to break a milestone before things start to fall in place, but even if things aren’t happening quick enough, it doesn’t mean things aren’t happening at all, be wary of this thinking, it can burn you out faster than you’d expect and that’s worse than having self-doubt.
My final note on progress is to be patient. Massive milestones won’t happen overnight and that’s OK, because after all, what’s the rush? Milestones are the summation of small incremental achievements anyway, so they will naturally take some time to accumulate – hence you’re required to be patient. Remind yourself to be OK with the time it will take for things to occur. Remember to balance your direction and effort so as to avoid burning out and even if you can’t notice if you’re progressing, or no one else does, it doesn’t mean you’re not. For example, getting up and going to the gym on a day that you found it extra hard to get out of bed is a massive win always!
I keep a TLDR list of focus points in view at all times on my phone to remind myself of how achieving and progressing works. I go over this list if I feel like I’m ready to give up or don’t have any motivation to take photos. I’ve shared that list with you below:
My list of focus point reminders:
- Be patient
- Be consistent
- Remember your vision
- Remember how far you’ve come
- Remind yourself of where you’re going
- Focus on what’s directly ahead
- How can I improve?
- How can I progress?
- Take your time
- Be comfortable and enjoy the ride
Don’t give up; You’re goal is achievable!
Article Credits: Ed Fetahovic
Millionaire’s Digest Team, Contributor