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Real Talk. Self-Doubt Gets us All…So Here’s What to Do About It.

By: NYC Accelerated Artist Coach Catherine Corcoran

Writing articles for our Accelerated Artist blog has never come easy to me. Not because I struggle with this form of communication and not because I don't have plenty I’d like to write about- trust me when I tell you that having the opportunity to speak has never been something I've resisted.

I am constantly advising my clients against self-doubt, explaining how important and valuable finding their own creative voice is. Because it not only informs branding and business, it is also the root of why they are artists to begin with.

I started the business that is my own creative life when I was thirteen years old. Then, being the CEO of this company meant stuffing manila envelopes with my Headshots and resume, cold-calling agencies and emailing casting directors posing as my mother (because no one wants to talk 'business' with a thirteen year old- no matter how ambitious she is).

A little over ten years later, I've stared in internationally recognized films, attended some of the largest film festivals in the world, and worked alongside academy award recognized artists (and even some winners). By all outside measures, I’ve had a modicum of success about which I can certainly feel proud. And when I look back on my younger self, one would think that her sense of self-assurance would have only grown in time; and while I can definitely say that my abilities and experience have strengthened- of my confidence, I am not so sure.

The older I become, the greater sense I have of how much I still have to prove, and beyond this, how much I risk 'losing' should I 'fail'. Even though I coach against it, self-doubt can still plague my ambition and often lead to the same self-sabotage I preach against with my clients, every day. Fact is: no one is immune to this sense of uncertainty, and fortunately or unfortunately, it never really leaves us.

My younger self always had a mental image of what 'success' looked like- but the funny thing was, each time I reached those pictured milestones, my visions of 'success' changed. It always looked different, and my real success seemed so far away again.

In response to this notion, I was told that 'you never arrive,' and I loathed that idea because it made all of the work I was doing seem like such a burden to carry.

Was it so much to ask that there be a final ‘pay-off’ once this was all over?

All I wanted was for all my hard-work to, one day, be 'enough.' But the truth is: there is never ‘enough.’ There is never a ‘final pay-off’ because this work and this business is constantly advancing, and growing, which, honestly, is the greatest gift that we could ask for as artists.

With finality comes and complacency, and with complacency there is no progress. Not in your creative abilities, nor your business.

Our worlds evolve because we evolve- as artists, business owners, and people. We begin as adolescent droplets of water, and develop into running rivers until we reach the sea- and even then, there will always be greater waves to build, larger oceans to reach, and higher mountains to overcome.

If you could conquer the world in one fell swoop, it wouldn't be worth conquering. Or, worse, once you’d conquered it, you’d be dissatisfied.

So as you read this article, I encourage you to push through whatever you may currently be struggling with, and add to your own creative river- knowing full well that this hurdle will not be the last- but it will feel damn good once you overcome it. And you’ll be on to the next.

Here’s the real truth: the success you've been dreaming of is already who you are.

The work we do is holistic, because your life reflects your art. Click here to know more, and click to schedule a 20 minute coaching session with me, for free. You deserve to run into your river with clarity, and to be sure you’re feeding the right streams.