Depression and Anxiety Make Me Doubt Everything I Do

June 23, 2021 Mahevash Shaikh

Self-doubt is a recurring theme in my life. It affects multiple areas of my life, from ethics and relationships to my personal and professional choices. What I experience isn't a healthy level of doubt; it is extreme and therefore unhelpful. And my depression and anxiety are responsible for this. Like many people, I have both, and together they make my self-doubt more potent. 

What Chronic Self-Doubt Does to Your Professional Life

Chronic self-doubt is bad for both your personal and professional life. Speaking from personal experience, doubting yourself all the time fills your heart and soul with fear. You're afraid of failure when you dare to be proactive or try something new. Conversely, you're also afraid of underachieving or being stuck in the same place. It's a lose-lose situation because whether you take action or not, you will end up doubting yourself.

From what I've seen, most people with depression make the safest possible choice to reduce the risk of failure. Even if they have a good chance of succeeding by taking a calculated risk or making an informed decision, they will stay right where they are. Or else, they will take so much time to act that someone else will jump on the opportunity and outshine them. 

For example, I have a friend with depression who has hated her job for years. She knows she should quit as there is no shortage of better opportunities in her field. However, she is afraid she isn't capable enough to land a better job. She finds some reason or another to postpone her job search. In fact, even though her work life has worsened with the pandemic, she is not trying to change her situation. I fully understand her point of view because self-doubt makes a person indecisive, unassertive, and operate from a place of fear. 

Preventing Self-Doubt from Taking Over Your Life

When you have depression and anxiety, self-doubt is probably going to be a routine part of your life. But this does not mean you have no option but to let it control your decisions and hold you back. With some effort, you can make bold career choices even when you feel like you are not good enough, unqualified, or doomed to fail. 

Watch the video below to know how I handle self-doubt. And once you're done, use the comments section below to tell me how you overcome it at work. 

Tags: self-doubt

APA Reference
Shaikh, M. (2021, June 23). Depression and Anxiety Make Me Doubt Everything I Do, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 22 from

Author: Mahevash Shaikh

Mahevash Shaikh is a millennial blogger, author, and poet who writes about mental health, culture, and society. She lives to question convention and redefine normal. You can find her at her blog and on Instagram and Facebook.

June, 25 2021 at 9:45 am

Thanks, Lizanne. As always, your encouragement and approval mean a lot :)

Lizanne Corbit
June, 23 2021 at 7:58 pm

Yahoo for overcoming those fears! Self-doubt can be such a painful double-edged sword because it not only wounds us in the present it can wound our future too by holding us back and keeping us small. Finding ways that work for you when it comes to quieting the self-doubt voice or learning to acknowledge it and put it in its place is such an empowering practice.

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