“Doubt your doubts” has become a popular refrain – but the statement and its underlying message are dangerously problematic. To put it simply: Doubts are natural, and even healthy – but if left unaddressed or added to, they can become very unhealthy. While there can be a certain amount of healthiness in letting small doubts slide, if your doubts revolve around who you are, what you believe, or how you live your life, they need to be addressed.
The problem with “doubting your doubts”
Left unaddressed, doubt will grow and infect your happiness, eating away at it. “Doubting your doubts” only compounds this problem and risks turning a small cut into a festering wound. Conversely, addressing doubt is part of a healthy process that will inevitably help you – not hurt you.
If you indiscriminately investigate your doubts and come to the conclusion that they are unfounded, it will set your mind at peace and you will be free of the doubts that were eating away at you. Additionally, it will solidify what you believe and increase what you know because of your thorough investigation.
On the other hand, if you find that your doubts were warranted, you will be more enlightened about yourself and the world around you — even if it means you have to change yourself or something you believe. While this can sometimes be difficult at first, ultimately it leads to a healthier and happier place because doubt will no longer be eating away at you. This is how we grow as human beings.
The path to inner peace
Regardless of what happens when you address your doubts – whether your beliefs are reaffirmed or you find out some uncomfortable truths – addressing doubt ultimately leads to happiness and growth. Meanwhile, ignoring them can lead to deteriorating mental health and worse. It’s in everyone’s best interest to face their doubts and come out the other side the better for it. Those who tell you otherwise probably have an interest in keeping you in the dark.