S:0966 Distinction: Not know vs. Doubt

(Distinctions are subtleties of language that, when gotten, cause a shift in a belief, behavior, value or attitude.)


To not know something, and know that you don’t, puts you in league with top performers. Highly successful people know they can never know it all. They don’t stress over that fact. Instead, they seek, ask, learn, and try/test/try. In the process they move from not knowing to knowing.

Doubt is a different animal. Doubt includes worry, not trusting yourself, and fear that you’ll make a mistake. In short, to paraphrase Shakespeare, your doubts are traitors that keep you from accomplishing what you want.

Doubting can stop you from taking action due to a lack of confidence in having a desirable outcome. “I can’t…” is the mantra of doubt.

Not knowing can propel you into action with an enthusiasm to learn and experience something new. “I wonder about…” is the mantra of not knowing.

We all have doubt from time to time, no harm in that. The next time you do, feel into it, then feel through it into the simple fact that all that is true is that there is something you don’t know. If you are then pulled into discovery, go for it. If not, let it go. Either way doubt will no longer be an issue.

Doubt is made up. It’s not real.

Not knowing is part of how life works. It is real.


Coaching Point: Do you embrace not knowing? Or do you have a doubt about it?


Copyright 2014 Steve Straus. All rights reserved.