Are you filled with self-doubt? Do you find yourself questioning your decisions before you make that first step? Do you mull over every possible outcome, so much so, that you find yourself back in the same place paralyzed with fear?

Yesterday, at a women’s group I was leading, I overheard a woman, we’ll call her Suzy, talk herself out of her dreams. She stood up and in less than one minute she told me how she had always dreamed of owning her own clothing boutique but in the exact same sentence, and using more words then she had used to describe her dream, she told me all the reasons why her dream was never going to come true. She lacked business knowledge, didn’t have financial means, rent in the area was to high, her children were young and she had no master plan, a long, tedious, step by step guide that would tell her how to begin.

Suzy had a vision, a beautiful dream of how she envisioned her future would unfold but she overanalyzed it. She was filled with endless doubt because she had spent every waking moment of her life, hemming and hawing every piece of her dream. What would the competition be like? Would she be able to financially sustain the lifestyle she was accustomed to? Would she give up easily?

Suzy was filled with self-doubt.

Doubt is the opposite of self-confidence. Confidence asks you to chase your dreams while doubt prompts you to sit down and mull over the pros and cons. Confidence requires action. What you do, you will then become. Doubt requires thinking. What you think, you will then become. So if you’re thinking that you’d like to spend more time doing and less time thinking then I’ve got some great news for you. You can start doing today!

Here are five life-changing tips that will help you overcome self-doubt.

YOU HAVE THOUGHTS and that’s ok but you must remind yourself that a thought is just a thought, it’s not real unless you act on it. Thoughts are ideas in your mind about what could go right and what could go wrong, but most of the time your thoughts stop you from doing what you want to do. Stop thinking and start doing.

REDEFINE FAILURE to become it’s true meaning. Failure occurs when you decide to not take action. Every step that you take between the first step and success is learning, not failing.

WHAT WOULD you say to a friend who was doubting herself? I imagine you would tell her all of the reasons why she will succeed and why she is capable of achieving her dreams. Write your friend a letter. In it describe all of the times your friend has overcome adversity and successfully achieved obstacles that were viewed as unobtainable. Then read this letter out loud, to yourself, as this letter is meant for you.

BECOME CONFIDENT about who you are and what you can do. You become what you do. The only reason you don’t feel confident right now is because you haven’t taken action but when you make that first big step towards your dream, you’ll begin to feel more confident towards taking another. But confidence starts when you take action and continues to build when you do more.

STOP LOOKING for others to validate you. Start living a life that is guided by your own values and aligned with your own truth rather than one that is solely focused on what others will think. Remove the need to impress others and begin to impress yourself by loving yourself as you are and having the courage to act on your own convictions. Follow your heart and it will guide you in the right direction.

Be who you want to be and let go of who you used to be by facing your fears and overcoming self-doubt.