“I Always Make It into This Whole Complicated Thing.”
I was chatting with another DC entrepreneur on Instagram who is newly putting herself out there, posting to social media to get more clients and brand awareness.
We were chatting about creating social media content and she said, "dude I need to get out of my head about this stuff. It's not that hard but I always make it into this whole complicated thing."
My initial reaction was to reinforce that point and say “yea it's not hard, you just gotta do it and get used to it basically,” because that’s what you always hear and the solution, in theory. But I didn’t say that because it didn’t feel true. And it didn’t feel supportive.
What I actually said was,
“Nah it is hard. I think that’s actually the hardest part. Getting over it being perfect and just doing it…I had a typo in a post last week and was annoyed at myself but then thought ‘do I feel like going back into Canva, editing it, redownloading, deleting the previous post, and then reuploading to social? Not really…f*ck it because in like a week it’ll be down further in my feed and only the diehards are gonna check it out.’”
I know that what she’s attempting to do is difficult. I have these same thoughts she does, as I’m sure we all do of “why do I make it into this whole complicated thing??”
Just Get Over It! Just Do It….
The hardest part for me, and for a lot of the people I talk to, is putting themselves out there—especially when trying something new and is outside of what others might associate as being “you.”
Putting yourself out there to the public in a new way over and over again is hard. It’s embarrassing and vulnerable.
There’s a fear of coming across as stupid and, consequently, others thinking less of you. This is very real biological feeling. It’s part of our social DNA. We want to be liked and validated and be part of the societal pack (I talked about this in We need outside validation…Wait! Hear me out! Ep 8)
That’s why it’s SO difficult to just “get over it.”
In theory it's so easy to do a certain thing that we have strong avoidant feelings. Then because we feel that strong avoidance and discomfort, we beat ourselves up for not just "doing it." But theory and reality are always vastly different. Everything is much more complicated and difficult in reality.
Telling someone in that vulnerable position to "get over it, it's not a big deal" is belittling AND further reinforces that they are being ridiculous. So then they continue that negative cycle of beating themselves up and questioning everything they do to put themselves out into the world.
I don't think that's productive. I don’t think it’s productive for you or them to perpetuate that kind of “advice.”
Imposter Syndrome Over at Bare Minimum Babe
I feel like a stupid phony spouting off nonsense literally every Bare Minimum Babe episode and post.
Some fun thoughts that run through my head while writing, editing, recording, and posting an episode:
what are you even talking about…stop ranting about nonsense
there's someone out there already who's way better than you doing this
you sound like an idiot
stop saying "Um" and "like"
that's a terrible angle and lighting...
should I wear makeup to record this video? I never wear makeup and I don't really want to...
sh*t another typo...now I look stupid
do I feel like going through the process to fix it and redownload it to reupload on social
no...not really, I guess I'll just stay looking dumb…
is anyone outside of my 5 friends listening to this or reading?
is this a good sound bite to post? I have no idea...
it doesn't matter what time you post to social because nobody will see it or care anyways
These are just a few. There's a lot more and way more expletives, I assure you.
Point being, it's veryyyyy difficult to silence the inner critic. So hard that I've just given up.
I Beat You Because I Love You (Toxic 💩)
Your inner voice is not saying mean things to hurt you and neither is mine. The inner voice is trying to protect you from being hurt. Whether that's physically or mentally. Emotional and mental pain has been proven to manifest in the body.
Your body doesn't want that pain. So trying new things, putting yourself out there, and being vulnerable inherently opens you up to being hurt.
Theory and reality are always vastly different. Everything is much more complicated and difficult in reality.
Your inner voice wants to nip that nonsense in the bud. Keep you safe. That's it's job. Don’t touch the hot stove and don’t give a public speech where you could embarrass yourself. To your brain, these experiences can be equally painful, even if there is no actual physical danger in giving a public speech.
Beating Yourself Up Over Beating Yourself Up
Beating yourself up over that inner voice only hurts you, and, in my opinion, furthers its need because you keep hurting yourself. VERY meta…
When I hear my inner voice being a major B I try to stay calm and just say “okay cool, but…:”
Does it matter though what she’s telling me could happen?
Do I even care about that consequence?
Is this worry big enough for me NOT to do what I was trying to?
What's the potential reward if I do it anyways?
Why is my inner voice saying this?
Is she trying to make me feel poorly or doubtful of myself? I don’t think so…
Your inner voice is trying to protect you and the best way to do that is keeping you safe in the routine and patterns in which you're currently surviving. Even if you’re not truly happy or fulfilled, you’re obviously still alive. Which means to your brain, everything is cool, let’s keep the status quo then, yea?
Trying that new hobby or business, making new friends, starting a new exercise routine, having that awkward conversation with a family member, asking for a raise, or whatever it is that you want, NOT doing that stuff keeps you safe.
Your brain wants to maintain status quo. At all costs basically.
Is My Inner Voice Bad?
Your inner voice telling you these negative things and placing doubts in your mind is not inherently bad nor wrong. It just needs to be recognized for what it's doing.
If she tells you not to stick your hand on a hot stove so you don’t get burned, that’s great advice.
If she tells you that you can’t go to a new gym because everyone will stare at you and make fun of you…that’s bad advice.
Doubting yourself is normal. Making things “overly complicated” so you avoid doing them, is normal. You're trying to protect yourself.
But you're safe. It's safe to post that Instagram reel, it's safe to say hello to that hottie at Starbucks you've been crushing on, it's safe to tell people you want to start a podcast that you feel wholly unqualified for (ahem…saying this for a friend…).
You overcomplicate things to mitigate harm and embarrassment which is a very real physical reaction.
You're safe. Tell your inner voice you’re safe.
The Question to Always Ask…
I’m working on NOT beating myself up for always “overcomplicating” or “overthinking” things and imagining scenarios and feeling dumb or like an imposter all the time too. Just because I’m a random woman making a podcast and writing this all down doesn’t mean I’m perfect at this.
My inner voice is still there—that nasty B in my head that tries to protect me. I don't know if she'll ever go away and that's okay. While I can't seem to shut her up, I can live with her like the Nervous-Nelly roommate that she is. I can hear her and ask myself the questions:
Does it matter what she’s telling me could happen?
Do I care about that possibility?
Is this worry big enough for me NOT to do it?
What's the potential reward if I do it anyways?
Why is my inner voice saying this?
Is she trying to protect me?
If you can only remember one question to ask yourself when that inner voice gets loud I think this one is most helpful: Why is my inner voice saying mean things about me—What is she trying to prevent?
Challenge for You! 🥳
The next time you think something negative and doubtful, pause a second to recognize it and ask yourself WHY is your inner voice telling you this narrative? Does it want to hurt me? Or is trying it’s toxic way of protecting me?
Remind your inner voice that you’re safe. Thank you for your concern but I can handle it, I promise.
Cliff Notes 🧗🏻♂️
Do you beat yourself up for avoiding or having trouble doing new or vulnerable things? Do you yell at yourself that, “this isn’t that hard, why am I overcomplicating it?!”
But, a lot of times it IS difficult and you’re NOT overcomplicating it and you’re NOT overthinking it. It’s okay to feel that a difficult thing is difficult. Belittling and berating yourself doesn’t help, it actually makes it worse and perpetuates the vicious cycle.
In this episode we discuss:
how we often belittle our own feelings and experiences in a way that we would never do to others
how beating yourself up for “overcomplicating” things causes more damage
how asking “why is my inner voice being mean to me” is a question that can stop the negativity in it’s tracks
we all feel like an imposter when trying new and difficult things
Check out the show notes for this episode at bareminimumbabe.com/post/overthinking-vs-belittling-yourself
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Check out the show notes for this episode at bareminimumbabe.com/post/stop-belittling-yourself
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