Doubt

100_2300A questioning attitude; skepticism; disbelief; distrust

The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today.  Franklin D. Roosevelt

Doubt whom you will, but never yourself.  Christian Nestell Bovee

Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt. Shakespeare

  Having doubt; is it good or bad?  It has both negative and positive aspects. In many ways it is healthy and intelligent to have a questioning attitude. It is very unhealthy if continually used as an excuse for “doing nothing”. Doubt should not be used as a convenient crutch to rationalize and justify having a lack of energy and commitment. Being overly complacent, wallowing in our misery, blaming others or conditions, are all potential consequences of using doubt as an excuse or reason for doing nothing.   

    Sincere doubt supported by a commitment to prove or disprove the truth or lack of truth of something is a good thing. There is nothing wrong with doubt as long as it is integral to seeking the truth. The world is full of doubters and skeptics who left to their own means would prevent us from making any progress. These type people perpetuate the status quo. The world did not believe than man could ever fly. The Wright brothers believed otherwise. The world doubted the practical uses for electricity. Thomas Edison proved them wrong. There are always many more doubters than believers. Doubters can be negative, pessimistic, and less than enthusiastic about life. Doubt takes away our energy, motivation and desire. When we doubt something good can happen, chances are we will be right. “Doubting” tends to produce self-fulfilling prophecies. When we doubt, we are most likely already doomed to failure. We unleash forces that will handicap us and try to make sure our doubts were well founded. When we undertake a project or task we do not believe in; we should stop, drop the project, and pursue something else. It is very likely we will fail anyway unless we change our attitude.

     To increase our effectiveness and success we must understand the nature of doubt. Recognizing what doubt is and what it does to us is an important first step. The opposite of doubt is belief. If we believe in something, our chances of success are always better. Our creative forces try to find ways for us to succeed. The more we learn to turn doubts into reasons to believe, the more successful and joyful we become. This is something that we can do if we are motivated and disciplined to do so. It requires a proactive and focused approach to how we think and approach things. The rewards are tremendous.

Challenge:  Sit down and make a list of things you doubt about yourself; qualities, skills, quirks, idiosyncrasies and so forth. These are the things that hold you back and “stuck” in status quo and locked inside your comfort zone. Imagine what it would be like if these doubts were replaced by belief, confidence, and determination. This is your opportunity to escape the prison of doubt and move on with your life.  

Wisdom: There are two ways to slide easily through life: to believe everything or to doubt everything; both ways save us from thinking.  Alfred Korzybski

Spiritual: (NIV)

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13

For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love, and of self-discipline. 2 Tim. 1:7

”Everything is possible for him who believes.” Mark 9:23

God does not want us to doubt. He wants us to believe. There is no reason to do otherwise. The Bible is full of promises of how God wishes to bless and provide for us. He wants the best for us. If God is truly who we say that he is, He is more than adequate and capable of providing us anything we can possible ever need. If we doubt in his abilities and do not believe in him; we will miss out on the blessings he intends for us.

Prayer:  Help me to never doubt you.

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