Although we all struggle with insecurities, they are definitely more crippling to some than to others. While it's not so easy to find ways to magically solve self-confidence problems, it is possible to overcome insecurities simply by understanding how they affect our daily lives--and our crucial personal growth.

1. We base actions on the validation of others

If everything we do is for the approval of others, we will never understand what it means to find true fulfillment. People cannot--and, what's more, should not--decide what is best for us. We must be able to find our own footing, to realize what matters to us and why, so that we may better navigate our futures.

2. We feel poorly about ourselves

Fostering a negative self-image instigates a scary, slippery slope of self-hate. The more you dislike yourself, the more you hate yourself for doing so--subsequently inhibiting any possible progress made in the process. Don't get sucked into the cycle of self-hate; find the good in yourself instead.

3. We are never satisfied

Perfectionism is a fault, even if many people wouldn't regard it as such. Finding faults can begin as a good first step in self-improvement but it is discouraging to be unsatisfied with everything we do. Learn that, sometimes, patience is necessary to overcome an obstacle. People will not perfect. Our work will not always be perfect. And there's nothing we can do but accept our faults and live with them.

4. We psyche ourselves out of taking risks

Fear is, by far, the most difficult aspect of insecurity to deal with. When we are afraid of failure, rejection, or any negative feeling, we stop ourselves from trying new things. Don't be afraid of what you don't know, or what you're not good at. If you don't start, how do you get better?

5. We don't let ourselves feel free

One of our greatest insecurities we have as responsible adults is a fear of letting go. We don't like things to be out of our control. We don't know how to deal with uncertainty. We don't know how to let life happen. The more we practice, the better we get. So, we might as well give it a shot.

Published on: Jan 15, 2017
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.