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At times I really struggle with my self-confidence, which in my management role (first role) can affect my performance from not being able to make decisions confidently from self-doubt or undervaluing myself.

I think that a lot of it is stemming from insecurities, for example, recently my long term relationship ended and it has put me on a total downer for the last 4 months where I am starting to question myself and general decision making. I now have a job interview lined up where I am worried that this self-doubt is going to affect how I interview and sabotage me.

Prior to moving into this role, when I was a developer, it did not affect me as much since it was not client facing, but in my current role I definitely feel a lot more tested psychologically. Saying that I do enjoy it a lot, and generally doing well in it.

Any tips on how to become a much more confident employee/person? thanks

  • Have you considered the possibility that you are dealing with depression? Years ago, I became severely depressed after a break up with my then girlfriend. – Herb Wolfe Feb 2 '17 at 13:15
  • @HerbWolfe How did you handle it? – bobo2000 Feb 2 '17 at 14:56
  • @bobo2000 I saw my doctor and got on anti-depressants. – Herb Wolfe Feb 2 '17 at 15:02
  • @HerbWolfe not sure if I want to take anti d , apparently people get hooked – bobo2000 Feb 3 '17 at 16:00
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Do what you can to compartmentalize your emotions and get on with the job in hand.

Tell yourself that you're allowed to be on a downer after work hours. When you're in your "work zone", get on with doing that.

I know it's tough to do that, but putting boundaries in your mind can be pretty effective and will allow you to get on with your life. I went through this when my wife passed away.

  • One of the ways I am self doubting myself is where I am constantly questioning the quality of my work. I do not know why but even if I am doing a good job, I am always questioning whether it is good enough. Is this normal? – bobo2000 Feb 2 '17 at 11:47
  • Yes, but it doesn't mean that you actually are making bad decisions. If the quality of your work was decreasing to an unacceptable level, then you would surely be told about it by your managers/peers. – Snow Feb 2 '17 at 11:50
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    @Pete, I am sorry about your wife. – HLGEM Feb 2 '17 at 19:57
  • Yes this is the only way, you have to learn to leave your personal problems at home. I know people who had to do it for losing spouses, having a close family member murdered, getting a cancer diagnosis and going through treatment, etc. That is the only way to get through it and not lose your job. – HLGEM Feb 3 '17 at 14:55
  • "I am always questioning whether it is good enough. Is this normal?" - Sounds like a classic case of impostor syndrome, where people underestimate their competence and fear being found out as a "fraud". It affects a lot of people, especially in more technical roles. Scott Hanselmann did a good post on it a while back: hanselman.com/blog/ImAPhonyAreYou.aspx – Trebor Feb 6 '17 at 16:24

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