Bob Baker's Artist Empowerment Blog

What Two Superstars Say About Self-Doubt

According to Dustin Hoffman, you're not so special. What do I mean? Let me explain ...

When Hoffman was a guest on the Today show some months ago, host Matt Lauer asked him about working with veteran actor Gene Hackman on a new film. Lauer was surprised when Hoffman admitted that, after finishing the film, the two seasoned actors wondered if they'd ever work again. When pressed, Hoffman explained that many successful movie stars have that sense of self-doubt all the time.

"After years of waiting tables and being rejected at auditions when you're just getting started, you wonder if you're really good enough or if anyone will ever hire you," said Hoffman, who explained how that fear never completely goes away -- even after decades of award-winning work.

So if you have doubts about whether your creative career will ever take off the way you want, don't think you have a monopoly on doubt and insecurity. You're not special in that regard. When you're struggling (or when you perceive that you're struggling), it can seem like everyone else has been given a secret code for success and you're the only one who's still clueless.

Just realize that this is a fear that artists at all levels experience -- no matter how secure they may seem on the outside.

That doesn't mean you have to welcome and encourage self-doubt. Confidence in your creativity and operating from a sense of "knowing" that you're on the right path is the state of mind you should always aspire to.

But when the nagging voice of insecurity begins sounding, accept it for what it is, realize that you're not alone ... then brush it gently aside and get back to busily pursuing your artistic goals.


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