The quote, “Doubt Kills More Dreams than Failure Ever Will” aptly describes the thoughts I am going to pen down today. Failure is what keeps us from taking that one big yet deciding leap in our lives. It is the fear of failure, of not doing well in a job, in a competition, the fear of not passing a certain exam that precludes a person from standing out. Fear of failure makes way for doubt to seep in. Voice of doubt generates uncertainty. And this uncertainty gives rise to unsure behavior which leads, eventually, to failure.
“The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubts, while the stupid ones are full of confidence.” Charles Bukowski
Imagine a student bright as a bee about to breakthrough and come out victorious in a say, medical entrance exam. And just before he/she does the crippling fear of failure, of not making it this time seeps in and right before actually making through it he/she stumbles upon the feeling and lose it. Now the question arises that was it the student’s mistake or the system’s fault. Did anyone at any step tried to rectify the situation for the poor soul. The answer is a big No. Now the person who gives in to that crippling fear might have been the scientist doing ground-breaking research on cancer, AIDS or hepatitis and if that one incident was prevented the whole community would have benefited.
Same examples can be taken in other fields. What if a person who was forced to become an engineer was a potential media-person or a photographer for the National Geographic! The lack of trust from parents, teachers and the society forces a person to drift away from their dream jobs. The system which creates doubts kills the cherished aspirations of a human being and it’s obnoxiously demoralizing.
Another side to it is, sometimes it’s not self-doubt that turns you in but it’s the other people judging you, doubting you or demeaning you which gives you that uncomfortable feeling. In our society, as they say, a fish is usually being judged by its ability to climb the tree! All the students, all the employees of an office or so to say, all the artists, people from different genres, businessmen etc. are constantly judged on same set of parameters and their skills are never individualized. A person who is seemingly different or not fitting in the usual norms (having a disability is a cherry on top); the ones who like to do things differently are never allowed to advance and are never given a chance. They are never challenged to test their own boundaries but rather succumb to their doubts and dubiety. As a result the society is deprived of the open field where everyone exercises their right to be successful. It’s akin to the glass ceiling effect. On daily basis we lose potential physicist, pharmacist, writers, engineers, media persons etc. without even knowing our in apprehensiveness.
Stories of people who made it despite all odds:
Albert Einstein’s contribution to science is all well-known and acknowledged. He was dyslexic. What if the burden of doubts the society puts on a person made Albert Einstein to give in. We would have been denied of the basis of modern physics, “The Theory of Relativity” and a couple other breakthrough developments, the photoelectric effect for instance.
What if Michael Jordan gave up early?
Had Walt Disney not pursued his quaint animation business which later proved to be extremely famous and paved way for future animated films where would the animation industry be today? Abraham Lincoln, Nelson Mandela are all such examples where they were largely discouraged at first. But they never gave up. They never backed out from something they believed they could do.
Will the society accept you as a visionary?
To be doubtful is something that is both a natural instinct and something inculcated in us by the society. There will always be people who will judge a person from the way they see things. Not everyone is capable of thinking out of the box. When a person finds your strengths unknown to his/her area of expertise they tend to pull you down. It is in that very moment that you need to embrace your spark, to trust your inner instincts. The intuition and the inner impulse is something that is proved to be right in majority of instances. Our sub-conscious mind somehow already knows that what a person is capable of; it knows when to take that one big leap, when to jump to the other side of the field where success awaits. But it requires willingness to reinforce the change and it definitely takes heaps of courage to swim against the water current.
Doubt and dubiety have caused more debacles than failure itself. The failure only tells you one way of not doing things whereas the doubt deprives you of your chance at succeeding and to prosper. It won’t allow you to be the change you wish to bring to the society. Don’t be afraid of chasing your dreams or trying at new things. One can never know what the future holds or what the next moment possibly be unveiling if you are not willing to take that one chance. Be unapologetic about being fearless and daring to explore the new ventures. Drift apart from the crowd and wander the unknown territory. With doubt impeding your actions you will never know what was meant to be yours, what different arenas are waiting to be explored by you and yourself alone. Self-doubt debars you from the liberty of innovation and limitless creativity. Your critics will fade into oblivion, your capabilities won’t!
So, dare to be different!
This article has been written by Sadia Asif Samdani