Many of my coaching clients are entrepreneurs or small business owners and one of the questions that we often find ourselves working through together is, “what am I doing wrong?” Often in our pursuits we have the feeling that if we could just change one thing, all the other miscreant pieces will fall into place. In today’s blog I want to help you answer the question, “what am I doing wrong?” next time you feel its dark cloud looming over you.

I have to tell you that there is almost never a simple answer to this question. However, sometimes there is something we’ve conditioned ourselves to be blind to over time. The next time you are asking yourself, “what am I doing wrong?” ask yourself these two questions first:

  1. Is it a fundamental error? In other words, is there some behavior, thought, or action built into what you’re doing that is causing you not to succeed, or not perceive success? These are big picture things, like your business does not align with your values, or there is no market demand for your service. If you don’t feel you are making any fundamental errors, ask yourself:
  1. Am I procrastinating something? If you don’t feel there is some large, fundamental error in what you’re doing then you might be putting something off. Is there something you need to do or have been telling yourself that you will do but haven’t gotten around to yet? Address that thing and see if you still feel the same way.

If you answered no to both of these questions, don’t worry. It’s normal and the truth is that there is almost never a magic bullet cure to the doubt you are feeling. Ultimately, too much self-inquiry in this way doesn’t accomplish much but dig your hole deeper. And when you get in a deep hole, it’s hard to do much besides beat yourself up over your perceived shortcomings.

The best advice I can give you is to shift this doubt from your mind with positive self-talk. Think about all the things you do right. Create a mental list of all the positive relationships you’ve built as a result of your work. When that dark cloud of doubt is over your head it can be difficult to remember that the sun exists. Introduce positive thoughts to help you find a balance between your natural doubt and all the great things in your life.

Want to talk further about how to deal with the feeling that you’re doing something wrong? Connect with me on Linkedin or on Twitter @DoubledareCoach.

photo credit: down street via photopin (license)