There have been numerous occasions when I lacked faith in myself. Even now, there are days when I struggle with self-doubt. However, I have developed a habit of delving deep into my memory bank to recall times when I overcame significant challenges. By bringing these accomplishments to the forefront of my mind, I am able to bolster my self-belief.

Starting something new is scary. Learning to believe in yourself can be a critical precursor to starting a new initiative. Why is it so important to learn to believe in yourself? How can someone work on gaining these skills? In this interview series, we are talking to business leaders, authors, writers, coaches, medical professionals, teachers, to share empowering insights about “How To Learn To Believe In Yourself.” As a part of this series we had the pleasure of interviewing Paulo Filho.

Paulo Filho is a visionary and ambitious entrepreneur who is the proud owner of Celestial Cleaning Service. Despite coming from a humble background where his family would receive donations of meat due to financial constraints, he always had a forward-thinking and risk-taking mindset. In 2016, he became the first in his family to ever attend and graduate college and has been making an impact in his community ever since.

Family is an essential aspect of Paulo’s life, and he loves his nieces and nephews, often serving as a role model for them. He aims to be present in their lives and make a positive impact. Paulo’s desire to be his own boss stems from his determination to prove to himself and his family that they can rise above their circumstances.

As the founder of Celestial Cleaning Service, Paulo is dedicated to providing job opportunities and promoting growth in his community. With his excellent leadership skills and passion for his work, he has managed to create a successful business that offers top-quality cleaning services to its clients.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive into the main focus of our interview, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?

My childhood was filled with endless fun, spent playing in the streets from dawn until dusk. Even when my mother called me in for the night, I would always insist that I had barely played at all. At the time, I was too young to fully understand the hardships that came with our humble beginnings. However, I do recall that our meals often consisted of rice and beans, or sometimes just rice and chayote, a type of green squash.

Despite our limited means, my father, a radio talk show host, was known for his generosity within the community. He frequently collected donations of staple foods like rice and beans to distribute to those in need. When there were leftovers, he would bring them home to feed our family. On occasion, when he had a little extra money, he would purchase meat from the butcher.

Over time, the butcher became aware of our family’s financial struggles and would occasionally drop off leftover meat at our house free of charge, every Friday. My father was always embarrassed by these gestures of kindness and would try to avoid receiving them altogether. I recall seeing him wipe away tears in silence after the butcher left our home.

It was during this time that I began to comprehend the reality of our poverty. Nonetheless, my father’s pioneering spirit left an indelible impression on me. He was never content to settle for less than what our family deserved and was always willing to take risks and move to new cities in search of opportunities.

Above all, my parents instilled in me and my siblings values such as perseverance, humility, kindness, and the importance of knowledge. They also emphasized the negative consequences of drug and alcohol consumption. Looking back, everything that I have accomplished in my life is thanks to the foundation laid by my parents’ upbringing.

What or who inspired you to pursue your career? We’d love to hear the story.

My nieces were the ones who inspired me to pursue my career as a small business owner. When I was in college, I made a promise to myself to graduate and prove to my nieces that it’s possible to be the first in our family to achieve success. Being looked up to by these little humans was something that I cherished and it made me want to be a positive influence in their lives. This responsibility made me mature quickly, and I even remember taking on a heavy workload of 18 units, working 33+ hours a week, interning 15+ hours per week, and maintaining a happy relationship all at the same time. I would tell my nieces that anyone can do this if they put their mind to it.

It took me six long years to complete my studies and still maintain straight A’s, but now my focus is on building a successful business that provides opportunities for our community to transform themselves into what they aspire to be. In the future, I see myself giving back more to my community by offering free business consulting, scholarships, volunteering, and other activities that will help me to be more present and involved in my community.

It has been said that our mistakes can be our greatest teachers. Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

One of my most humorous blunders in my early days involved activating a client’s self-cleaning function on their oven, only to witness flames emanating from within, which led me to experience an intense feeling of terror, assuming that I was about to burn down their entire kitchen. Hastily shutting it down, I noticed smoke emanating from the interior a few moments later when the latch opened, compelling me to open it further, causing all the smoke detectors to sound off and the fire department to arrive for an inspection. It was a harrowing experience, akin to being a scared little kid all over again, worried that I’d start a fire and face the consequences. Ultimately, the tenant and I were able to laugh it off once the smoke had dissipated. From this experience, I realized two things: never activate the self-clean feature on an oven again, and never tinker with anything that I don’t have a firm grasp on!

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?

One of the most exciting projects I am currently involved in is a partnership with a property management company in San Francisco. Our task is to handle their entire move in and move out cleanings, covering over 100+ units. This project is very dear to my heart, as it aligns with my dream of creating more job opportunities for people and providing them with chances to grow as workers and leaders.

Interestingly, this collaboration started with a simple cleaning job for the property manager’s mother. She was so impressed with our work that she recommended us to her family members. This led to the property manager reaching out to us for a bid. I strongly believe that when you do something with love, it will be returned to you.

OK, thank you for all of that. Let’s now shift to the core focus of our interview. This will be intuitive to you but it will be helpful to spell this out directly. Can you help explain a few reasons why it is so important to believe in yourself? Can you share a story or give some examples?

One of the most significant things I have done is to accumulate a range of experiences with small victories in my past, which I can draw upon in times of self-doubt. I recognize the importance of believing in myself, as I owe it to myself above anyone else to have faith in my abilities and act on my objectives and aspirations. When I have confidence, I am more likely to feel energized in the morning, take the first step, tackle the arduous or mundane tasks, and persist in the face of challenges or obstacles.

My personal experience illustrates this point vividly. When I first entered college, I struggled to earn grades above C’s, which left me feeling like a failure. However, as I persisted and worked diligently, I began to see progress, gradually moving from C’s to B’s and eventually achieving straight A’s. Along the way, I learned the valuable lesson of how to learn effectively. I recognized that everyone has unique ways of retaining and processing information, and I discovered that I needed to study the same material several times, much like memorizing vocabulary with flashcards. Through this process, the knowledge began to make sense and became ingrained in my memory. This was the turning point when I began to believe in my capabilities and understood that my learning potential was not fixed.

Since then, I have achieved my desired fitness goals, improved my relationships with my family and friends, and taken strides towards opening my own businesses and pursuing new ventures. All of these accomplishments are rooted in my belief in myself and my ability to learn, grow, and evolve.

What exactly does it mean to believe in yourself? Can I believe that I can be a great artist even though I’m not very talented? Can I believe I can be a gold medal Olympic even if I’m not athletic? Can you please explain what you mean?

Believing in oneself means recognizing that challenges will come, and that there may be failures along the way, but ultimately success will be achieved. It also means acknowledging personal limitations and desires, and making decisions based on them using the best available knowledge. Failures are not just setbacks, but opportunities to learn and grow. A life without failures would be dull and unfulfilling, but when accompanied by accomplishments, they help develop self-belief.

I firmly believe that in life, one can become whatever they desire, whether it is a successful artist or a medal-winning athlete. While certain physical limitations may need to be considered in some sports, it is important to push oneself to the limits and see how far they can go. As for being a great artist, talent should not be measured by someone else’s standards. If the art or act positively impacts one’s life or the life of another, then it is a great accomplishment. I am inspired by stories from influencers and gamers who have saved countless lives through their videos and live streams. Therefore, I strive to be a positive role model to my nieces and use my skills and talents to serve others, regardless of whether they are perceived as exceptional. One never knows whose life they may change for the better.

Was there a time when you did not believe in yourself? How did this impact your choices?

There have been numerous occasions when I lacked faith in myself. Even now, there are days when I struggle with self-doubt. However, I have developed a habit of delving deep into my memory bank to recall times when I overcame significant challenges. By bringing these accomplishments to the forefront of my mind, I am able to bolster my self-belief.

I vividly recall a time when I was 17 years old and had just obtained my driver’s license. My brother took me go-kart racing, but I performed terribly and couldn’t win to save my life. After losing repeatedly to my brother and others, I vowed never to race again until five years later. Determined to improve, I spent over $3,000 on go-kart racing over the next three months. My goal was to become so skilled that I could invite my brother for a race and defeat him soundly.

Finally, I felt confident enough to invite my brother to race with me again. He made excuses, blaming the kart’s speed or weight, and switched karts two or three times. Nevertheless, I still managed to beat him handily, leaving him with no excuse for his defeat.

At what point did you realize that in order to get to the next level, it would be necessary to build up your belief in yourself? Can you share the story with us?

I find that building self-confidence is a continuous challenge that requires constant effort. Similar to how recovering alcoholics or smokers continue to struggle with their addiction even years later, I still struggle with self-doubt from time to time. However, I’ve learned the importance of having a process to counter those self-limiting beliefs and remind myself of the obstacles I’ve already overcome. This helps me recognize my worth and capability to conquer any current struggles or challenges.

When I first attended an event with entrepreneurs who were enthusiastic, driven, and had unwavering self-belief, it struck a chord with me. The speakers were so passionate and optimistic that I found myself admiring them and wanting to exude that same energy. It felt like home, and I realized that I too could have a positive impact on others by projecting that same confidence and positivity.

What are your top 5 strategies that will help someone learn to believe in themselves? Please share a story or example for each.

1 . The best thing to do to build your self-confidence: When I first joined the Jiu Jitsu gym, I was intimidated. I had never done any martial arts before, and I was convinced that I wouldn’t be any good at it. But I was determined to try, so I signed up for a class.

At first, I struggled. I was clumsy, slow, and my technique was all wrong. But as time went on, I began to improve. I started to understand the techniques, and I started to see progress.

After several months of training, something changed. I began to believe in myself. I started to feel like I could actually be good at Jiu Jitsu. And then, one day, I found myself tapping out people who were one level above me and much stronger physically than me.

It was an incredible feeling. I had never felt so confident in myself before. And it wasn’t just about Jiu Jitsu. This newfound self-confidence spilled over into other areas of my life. I was more confident at school, more confident in my personal relationships, and more confident in my decision making.

Joining the Jiu Jitsu gym was one of the best decisions I ever made. It taught me the power of perseverance and hard work, and it showed me that I’m capable of achieving things that I never thought were possible.

2 . The Second best thing to do to build your self-belief: Focusing on tasks that are possible as opposed to those that are impossible can help build belief in oneself for several reasons. Firstly, by setting achievable goals, you are more likely to experience a sense of accomplishment upon completion. This sense of achievement can help boost self-esteem and confidence, creating a positive feedback loop that encourages further progress. Additionally, when faced with a challenge that is possible to overcome, you are more likely to persevere and find creative solutions, further reinforcing their belief in their abilities. By contrast, focusing solely on impossible tasks can lead to frustration and feelings of inadequacy, ultimately hindering one’s self-belief.

3 . The third best thing to do to build your self-belief: As someone who struggled with maintaining healthy habits in the past, building the habit of exercising every day was a game-changer for me. At first, it was difficult to motivate myself to get up and work out, but as I started to see the positive changes in my body and mind, my belief in myself began to grow. Each day that I committed to exercise, I proved to myself that I was capable of following through on my goals and taking care of my body. Now, I feel more confident in my ability to tackle challenges and make positive changes in my life, and I credit that newfound belief in myself to the habit of daily exercise.

4 . The fourth best thing to do to build your self-belief: Writing down previous challenges and the results of overcoming them can be incredibly useful in building self-belief. By documenting past obstacles and how you managed to overcome them, you can gain a sense of accomplishment and confidence in your abilities. This process allows you to recognize your own resilience and strengths, and it provides a tangible record of your progress. Looking back on this record during times of self-doubt can serve as a powerful reminder of your ability to overcome challenges and achieve your goals.

5 . The fifth best thing to do to build your self-belief: Learning to recall previous positive results from challenges can be a valuable tool in building self-confidence and self-belief. By remembering the times when we have overcome obstacles, we can tap into the positive feelings associated with those experiences and use them to bolster our confidence in the present. Just like money stored in a bank, positive memories can serve as a reserve of emotional resources that we can draw upon when we need them most. By consciously focusing on and reinforcing positive memories, we can create a stronger sense of self-belief and increase our resilience in the face of future challenges. This process can help us to cultivate a more positive and optimistic mindset, which can in turn enhance our overall well-being and sense of self-worth.

Conversely, how can one stop the negative stream of self-criticism that often accompanies us as we try to grow?

As someone who struggles with negative self-talk, I’ve discovered the positive impact of listening to motivational speakers such as Tony Robbins and Gary Vaynerchuk. However, I’ve also realized that it’s crucial to take active steps to reduce or eliminate negative self-criticism altogether.

To combat my tendency towards self-criticism, I’ve found practicing self-compassion and gratitude to be beneficial. I make a conscious effort to treat myself with kindness and understanding, as I would a friend going through a difficult time. I also make a point to focus on being grateful every day. When I catch myself engaging in negative self-talk, I shift my focus to self-care and positive affirmations.

Are there any misconceptions about self-confidence and believing in oneself that you would like to dispel?

I used to believe that self-confidence was an inherent trait that some people had, while others didn’t. However, as I have grown and learned more about myself, I have come to realize that this is not the case. Confidence is not something you are born with, but rather something that you develop over time. It comes from the experiences you have had, both good and bad, and the lessons you have learned from them.

I understand now that confidence is not a one-time achievement but an ongoing process that requires constant effort and attention. It’s natural to have doubts and fears, but it’s important to face them head-on and keep pushing forward. Confidence means acknowledging your weaknesses and imperfections while having the courage to pursue your goals and dreams, regardless of what anyone else thinks. It is through this constant process of growth and learning that I have come to build my own confidence, and I know that it is something that I will have to continue working on.

What advice would you give to someone who is struggling with imposter syndrome?

As someone who has experienced imposter syndrome myself, my heart goes out to those who are currently suffering from it. It’s a constant battle between feeling like a fraud and trying to convince yourself that you belong. It can be debilitating.

It’s important to have compassion for yourself and recognize that imposter syndrome is a common experience that many people go through. It doesn’t define who you are. It’s okay to ask for help and to seek professionals who can provide professional support.

Taking care of yourself and seeking out professional help, whether it’s therapy or coaching, can make a big difference in how you navigate imposter syndrome. Remember that you’re not alone, and it’s possible to overcome these feelings with the right tools and support.

Ok, we are nearly done. You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good for the greatest number of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.

If I could inspire a movement that would make the greatest good for the largest amount of people, it would be centered around empowering people with the skills necessary to thrive in the world. The ability to thrive in today’s world often requires more than just formal education, and it is crucial that people learn a wide range of practical skills that can help them navigate various challenges in life.

This movement would focus on teaching people a wide range of practical skills in sales, building, financial literacy, and skills on how to care for their physical and emotional well-being. Sales skills can help individuals negotiate better prices and deals in various aspects of their lives, from buying a car to negotiating a better salary. Building skills can help individuals become more self-sufficient and take care of minor repairs in and around the home. Financial literacy is essential for making informed decisions about money and investments, and physical and emotional skills to give them security that their physical and emotional well being can be improved.

Empowering people with these skills would not only benefit them directly but would also have a ripple effect on society as a whole. When people have the knowledge and skills to make better decisions and take care of themselves, they are better equipped to contribute positively to their communities and the world at large.

Overall, this movement would prioritize practical skills that can have a significant impact on peoples’ lives, helping them to become more self-sufficient, resilient, and better equipped to navigate the challenges of modern society.

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US, whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we both tag them 🙂

If I may express my admiration and aspiration, there are a few individuals whom I greatly look up to and would relish the opportunity to spend a day with. Among them are Gary Vaynerchuk, Tony Robbins, Robert Kiyosaki, Jordan Belfort, and several other accomplished personalities whose names would be too extensive to enumerate. The chance to meet and learn from these outstanding figures would be a dream come true for me.

How can our readers further follow your work online?

I would like to begin by expressing my gratitude to each and every one of you for allowing me the opportunity to share this stage. My sincere wish is that my humble contribution has ignited a spark within you to fully harness your potential, and that you treat yourself with kindness and compassion during your time on this wonderful planet.

If you would like to follow or connect with me please find me on twitter at, or my business Celestial Cleaning Service on Instagram at or my website at

Thank you for these really excellent insights, and we greatly appreciate the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success.


  • Savio P. Clemente

    TEDx Speaker, Media Journalist, Board Certified Wellness Coach, Best-Selling Author & Cancer Survivor

    Savio P. Clemente, TEDx speaker and Stage 3 cancer survivor, infuses transformative insights into every article. His journey battling cancer fuels a mission to empower survivors and industry leaders towards living a truly healthy, wealthy, and wise lifestyle. As a Board-Certified Wellness Coach (NBC-HWC, ACC), Savio guides readers to embrace self-discovery and rewrite narratives by loving their inner stranger, as outlined in his acclaimed TEDx talk: "7 Minutes to Wellness: How to Love Your Inner Stranger." Through his best-selling book and impactful work as a media journalist — covering inspirational stories of resilience and exploring wellness trends — Savio has collaborated with notable celebrities and TV personalities, bringing his insights to diverse audiences and touching countless lives. His philosophy, "to know thyself is to heal thyself," resonates in every piece.