How to Overcome Self Doubt When No One Will Support Your Passion


my parents cut me off and I told him them I wanted to be an artist am paying for my way through school there’s all that there’s that difficulty that comes with it but how do you get past feeling sorry for myself was like one of the worst things ever. I’m really big into japanese culture and like what you said like to prove everybody wrong i think they call that like kuyashii or something like that yeah and it’s that feeling of like I’m gonna prove you wrong. I don’t care about what you think i don’t care i just want you want to be great i just I really really really want to be great but I’m scared of what sacrifices I’ll have to do i’m not comfortable with it. I’m not i’m not comfortable telling my family to like to F* off because i need to do is I’m not comfortable telling everybody else around me to shut up just because i’m inspired right now and I need to stick with this feeling and like I don’t know I don’t know how to deal with it okay i’m going to share some some wisdom for my father he always would lecture me instead of slapping me and when I was a kid I just like me because then we can get on with life but I would sit there for hours and just lecture me and apparently did do something to me because I remember them because whenever i trace the thought that I have it’s like oh yeah that was my dad’s voice now it’s my voice so one thing he told me is that your life is long amount of time in which you have to make it short you put the work in now and achieve success and you enjoy the rest of your life or you take the work and you spread it out over your entire life and you never achieve that success and so I was lazy I didn’t have the work out there and getting into this whole idea about proving them wrong it’s been part of what’s driven me but it’s it’s turning depression frustration and all the other negative emotions its channel into something it’s still pretty negative because you’re angry at other people now and so as I got older I started to say I just want to do this not to prove them wrong but because i believe in who i am so it’s a transition so you’re going to go from a dark self-pitying kind of wallowing state we just feel sorry for yourself going to channel that into prove them wrong that should be sure that will make it really is Right prove them wrong because you want to use that to motivate you but once you start coming out whole you’ll realize something that you are great you people doing lots of things and you can let go of the bitterness so i think somewhere in that dark night my what is a dark night of the soul is I came to resolve an internal conflict and the person that was killed in that cave was the boy and the man emerged because he needed to and and then I became really serious and focus and i’m looking at you right now and I don’t think you need to tell people if off or get away from me or shut up i think that’s just an internal dialogue going to have I have a plan i’m gonna make sacrifices i’m going to go all the way so I made a promise to myself we’re gonna focus on school we’re going to eat drink sleep school is no time for girls time for parties no time for anything that was not school I could see the result for every ounce every effort every piece of sweat you invest in you you get a 10x return because I can see myself now even in the first semester at school distancing myself from everybody else those sacrifices led to a reward and I think are our mind and our body craves that kind of reward of knowing that you achieve something self-fulfillment of mastery all those things are confidence boosters but you gotta stay in that zone dough you gotta stay no it’s addictive nobody got it like he’s in his own he wants to be in there right now small steps right and the reward that you get is addictive you play video games I used to but I gave it up to try and develop more my design and kind of thinking and stuff like that video games are quite a different thing sure absolutely because they’re designed to give you small rewards along the way a badge a sound effect a new sticker an armored new accessory escape or something the they’re designed to really tap into how your brain works and if you sit here and say from this day forward i’m not saying this is that important of a day but if this is your day this day forward the Giancarlo’s that walked in here is no longer the one that walks out that is your moment that you’re defining moment and you can choose to become whatever you want to me so I’m gonna I’m gonna drop a little bit of jim rohn knowledge wisdom and you’re business philosopher you can look them up it’s jim rohn roh n ok business philosopher he’s one of the early pioneers and he said if you want to know who you are take the average of the five people you spend the most time with that’s who you are server is looking at their friends well damn thats ok alright and then now what will pivot because it’s like okay we need better friends we need better people to hang around with and you’re gonna sit there world to that’s easy for you to say how many feet high level people people admire and look up to you gonna do what Michael Beirut says now you guys know Michael Beirut is Right pentagram Michael Beirut says it is one of his lectures he says hijack your mentors this is not some terrorist act hijack your mentors what he’s saying is you can have mentors without them knowing their mentoring you what a crazy concept you can have a mentor that doesn’t know their mentoring you I’ve never met Michael Beirut and never spoken I’ve never seen him but anyways my mentor just like Jim Rhodes is dead just like all these people I’ve learned from from anthony robbins to a jack canfield to Blair ends these are people you can learn from we live in the information age or anything and everything you want to know is already there and most of it is for the amazing price of free ok so you’re talking about your moment where you realize you wanted to be a designer but in today’s day and age it’s also a lot more competitive for us I mean just walking through your studio and i’m already intimidated just because I feel like the school i’m going to where I really focusing on three programs but then one of the three other way I’m adobe programs illustrator indesign and photoshop and then I’m seeing people here using things are similar to Maya and like cinema 4d and I just I don’t know how to really step in our take the first step into getting into those programs because now when you do graphic design you basically aren’t really looked at as much unless you know web design and all these other add-ons but it’s just figuring out how to take that first step to get into it is where I’d lost you said a lot no no I’m just I’m only acknowledging that you said a lot i’m trying to unpack what you said into bite-sized pieces in my robotic brain rearrange the pieces so they make sense taking the first step the first step is the hardest step but every journey the journey ten thousand miles begins with the first step so I’m gonna tell you a trick okay okay first I’m going to clarify something the last three people hired our graphic designers with no emotion no animation no 3d skills so there’s some assumptions going on ok there’s some assumptions going on in terms of what it is that constitutes somebody who is employable desirable that kind of stuff we have all the destination we want to go in life some of us won a blueprint gps Waze app and to tell us every turn and to know that no turn will be wrong that’s one way to do it in life but those people tend not to go very far because they’re waiting for all the parts and pieces to fall into our lap now if we kind of look at it like this like you can explore the world and you know that there’s a mountain peak somewhere over there in that direction let’s its North I don’t need to know every crossing every Bridge every like when i get supplies from edge notes in that direction so what I do is I look at the ground in front of me because the mountain seems very far away and then the the peak of the mountain seems even farther up it’s too far it’s intimidating and it will choke you okay so my advice if you think about the Explorer metaphor is I just want to see is a snake is there something in front of me that’s going to kill me and I just keep moving from time to time I look up and then I realize that that path that I was told to go down was no longer available because the rain had washed away and so I’m gonna keep making adjustments and I know I’m kind of time it will not take the most linear path but the path that will get me there there was a story about a woman who rowed a boat across the Atlantic solo so how do you even do that so she’s like you know some days you have good days the currents going with you and you should go X number of miles someday she would go negative miles and it was painful for her because she had to sleep and then depending on where the current took her she you know but it’s always trying to move forward and not letting the setbacks tear you down there’s this dialogue with the inner self you guys know that there’s this inner voice inside your head this voice is sometimes your worst critic your worst enemy and the person who is the hardest on you for a lot of different reasons the one who says you can’t do it that the world’s going to hate your stupid or ugly all these kind of horrible things and I’m not gonna get into where that voice comes from but i first need you guys just acknowledge there is that voice inside your head you need to have a conversation with that voice and you need to give yourself some permission to screw up a little bit because that voice could be suffocating and it usually is from this place of authority teacher coach a parent and uncle Dodd somebody has been telling you all these things with good intentions to protect you but all those things limit you know I went through a story very similar yours where is like my parents cut me off and I told him I wanted to be an artsy ramping for my way through school there’s all that there’s that difficulty that comes with it but how do you get past them ok so your head I’m losing myself in our conversation here because I’m dealing with your emotions and my emotion and reaction to your emotional is totally cool it really is and this can get into deep three hour cycle analysis and and I’m trying to figure out because I’m losing myself in this because I want to respond to this and have so many tools to share with you my god i just want to help you and I’m trying to figure out how to distill this down in a conversation that we’re having right now so first I just want to acknowledge something in the room hehe asked for a personal thing to to take off the exterior mask which I do not do and i told you i am not messing around I’m really telling you okay so who there’s a couple things we are constantly looking for validation approval by others and then we have to kind of ask ourselves why does that person’s opinion matters so much to us ok because I look at it like this if you make good decisions you should receive the reward and if you make bad decisions that’s on you personal responsibility and just relying on you ok you believe what you’re doing you going against okay so we need to understand a couple things are parents god bless them have the best intentions for us but the the rate of change is happening in the world just forget about design for second just in the world they’re operating system is not equipped to survive today you ever tried a teaching like snapchat or something the heads would explode I’m old to my head explodes only one dude why don’t put stickers all over my face it doesn’t make any sense whatsoever I don’t want to post a video right now that’s all I can do right so we don’t understand those things and so the best thing that you can do right now is to say that that operating system that set of instructions just doesn’t apply in the 21st century so you understand they’re trying to give you the best knowledge and even if they were they would say get a college degree and get a job know this no you’re not I don’t care what you’re studying like attorneys are having our time now because of legalism there’s so many things that is disrupting technology and conventional wisdom you know what you need to do so you set your own compass and you set your own goals and to tie back to everything we said earlier is don’t set a goal so big that all you can do is consider how far away you are from that goal small goals i’m gonna send one more hour in the library i’m going to watch one video night and read a book of semester those are not gigantic goals and then you read in a weekend or whoa i’m headed the game just turn me on i want to read another book and what else is there ok small goals i’m gonna get rid of one lame old friend is dragging me down in a pool of negativity i believe that spot empty so there’s space for me or for a new friend a new mentor small goals looking ahead of you you do that and i gotta tell you something just like the negative stuff is addictive the positive stuff is very addictive too and only one path will get you there you know nobody ever got where they wanted by not trying so if there’s a shot i’m not saying that’s a guarantee is to go down the path of positivity I kind of looked like this my wife is very risk-averse she’s a wonderful woman because you put up with me but if there are hundred ways of outcomes she looks for the 99 that’s gonna fail like that persons not gonna pay you like honey that’s not know they will pay me they’re good for the world to worry you how many times we’ve been burned like twice in 21 years it’s fine you know what I mean like oh thank God it’s unsafe then it’s like oh my god your negativity your pessimism is killing me right now right so there’s this trick you guys and it’s the kanye west trick ok you guys know this it’s a Kanye West trick I want you to imagine something right now I’ve done this before imagine a bubble surrounding you and it’s called a reality distortion field ok Oh egotistical Kanye in like nope don’t hear that did it don’t hear that you never get your broke you you married this crazy woman you’re seeking attention nope nope nope that was the greatest album ever heard i got in you see what I’m saying there’s just so much humility and and self-criticism and negative talk that I need to just flip that switch i would rather hear that you believe so much in yourself you’re walking on air you being like I don’t know it’s just not the right way to behavior speak and people judgment like whatever when we were in school it’s like hey here’s my work and the teachers like amazing amazing work Ruby and you’re like on cloud nine right conversely the next week coming it’s like I hit that thing again Matt and use don’t feel like you got it you put it up and they’re like oh that’s terrible working us what you’re in the gutter again ok so your emotional state and your emotional well-being is being governed by who somebody else would you give the key to your sanity to any person on the street nobody gets in there I control that so here’s what I do you know what I didn’t do well this week I should have changed this and I got distracted i watched football game or american idol whatever not American Idol the voice and I just I just this needs to change so when the person critiques it right yeah I know already told myself before I know where I stand thank you i appreciate you that’s it conversely the next week right dude concept of solid design flawless I put all my heart into this is this is it so when the teacher says or your friends that was awesome things in your mind you say I know I don’t say it out loud and i know right it was good i knew it was good before I came in here I knew it was bad before I came in here i’m not looking for your validation I’m not looking for your criticism and looking for any of that I would you know

100 thoughts on “How to Overcome Self Doubt When No One Will Support Your Passion”

  1. I only just discovered this channel a few weeks ago and in that short amount of time, you (and Jose) have completely changed the way I now approach my work as a designer. You guys are having an impact the world over and can't wait to see what you have in store for 2017 🙂

  2. Thank you for sharing so much truth. A turning point in my life was when I realized that work is a welcome refuge from my worries and troubles. I once thought that the positive stars had to align for me to concentrate and be productive. Not so!

  3. is that a Pepsi can inside a Starbucks cup?

    You guys are the best. What a way to end the year with some kickass wisdom. Really looking forward to your content in 2017!

  4. So I'm not a designer but a Mercenary Blogger (mercenary sounds so much cooler than freelancer), and your channel has been incredibly helpful. Almost all of the business advice directly translates into things I do. Next time I hear one of my clients talk about needing design help, I'll send them your way.

  5. You're so wise, such an inspiration with the way you think, you're real with the world too. I can't relate to anyone as much as I do to you: You're my mentor Chris!

  6. I can really relate to what the girl was saying in the video. My parents and I got in a argument today about me changing my career to something else because they said "graphic design is useless" and that really brought me down, and I actually cried because parents are there to support you no matter what. I just don't want to do something just for the money or this person say I should do it, I want be happy in the future going to work not sad. I just feel so pressurize.

  7. i had to get rid of one of my friend because she way too negative, she hated everything, she thought everybody treat her as princess, nothing was good enough for, so I moved on so glad…

  8. This is a great session! I feel like both people in this video a lot of the time. I agree with Chris, most of the time you are more focused on expectations that what you need to be doing. (I think I just mentor hijacked Chris, haha)

  9. The first time that someone really giving deep real advice and not just "blah blah blah, you gonna made it, blah blah blah" stuff. Thank you so much for doing this. How you find the time besides to all the client work in your agency?

  10. Chris you are just amazing, thank you for all this insight into what it takes to become more confident – really appreciate it at this point in life 🙌

  11. so if Kuyashii is proofing doubters wrong what is the japanese word for believing who you are ?

  12. Hey guys, I just want to thank you for sharing your insights with those seeking more. I pray to never stop seeking, not because of discontentment, but because deeper understanding is always around the corner if we seek to find it. I'm 35 years old which is probably elderly to the general student audience here. But we are all students.We are all teachers. And much can be learned from one another, each and every one. It took me into my 30's to take the step I missed looking ago. The step to discovering who I am at my core and what it is that I am most excruciatingly passionate about. It was not what I expected at first, but it was there all along hidden in plain sight. Just wanted to let anyone who may struggle with this that you're not alone. And whether you know from infancy what your dream is or you're decades late to the party, desperately grasping for a guiding whisper, you're here because you're purpose remains. Again, thank you for being so concise and insightful. By helping one person with one single inspirational message in this one particular video, you have already changed the world. With an audience of this capacity? Man, I think You may have just rocked the universe back into Nirvana. Peace and much love everyone

  13. The Futur i just found your videos and im mind blown, your discussion are so important because no one really speaks about the challenges of becoming a graphic designer and succeeding in it, im a black african male from south africa, i grew up in a community that didnt share any interest in creativity, so i had to be self motivated, thank you so much and keep it up the great work

  14. Excellent advice, especially the part about letting your determination to prove your doubters wrong drive you to succeed, and then simply focus on doing well and giving back without thinking of the doubters anymore.

    I went through depression once due to hating my job, poor social life, and a failed relationship. Then I came across the saying "The best revenge is to live well," and this hit deep. I've pulled myself up much farther than I've ever been before, and people who once looked down on me now look up to me.

    However, I no longer think in terms of revenge or proving myself, I simply be all I can be and help people when I can, including some who used to scorn me. There you go, Internet, my life in a nutshell…

  15. Been watching your videos over the past couple of days. They have really helped re-think the way I do design. I have been designing since I was 12, without much of a focus. But now I realize it is a passion of mine and through these videos, I am slowly learning how to make this a reality. I also appreciate how you maintain an active presence on your social outlets. Design+Business+Humanity, this is what I have learnt.
    Thank you for your generous contribution to the world :')

  16. I understand this is a couple of months late but I just wanted to say that I really appreciate this new direction you guys are taking while maintaining the business and design parts. I'm talking about the psychological approach to design because It's not only about recieving validation from others, learning how to deal with your inner voices and learning to transform negative energy into a productive habit. In my opinion the most important part of it is recognizing it yourself, the amount of work you are doing to become a better person and a better designer. Keep it up!

    It would be really cool to see more NLP x Design topics like, the impostor syndrome and to stop assuming other creative people are "gifted" and that there wasn't any work behind it.

  17. Thank you so much for sharing these inspiring and educational videos. A coworker shared one of your other videos a few days ago and I've been watching and learning so much!

  18. Thanks Chris I really appreciate your outlook, advice, and videos…amazing design content, always mixed with a lil special life lesson on the side…thankyou thank you keep up the great work

  19. Thanks you Chris for being real. Glad I could hear this from another designer… My next step feels lighter… #NewMentee

  20. Thank you so much for this video!
    My biggest struggle is my self confidence. I started studying a university program that was very wide and contained the basics in graphic design and web design. My goal back then was to become a web designer, but I found a new passion for graphic design instead. It kind of became an obsession to design completely random things and my mind was a shipwreck at one point because of all the ideas I had and the little time I had to turn them into something real. Although, it was one of the most stressful and also fun times in my life – but that's all it was. Basic and fun.

    Now I work as a graphic designer for an agency and I feel so confused. The passion and hunger for design is still there but I feel like I know nothing. I'm not an expert in design principles, I don't know the design language very well and I don't quite keep up with things at work which also makes me feel like I have nothing to do in the business. I stress myself because my tasks takes too much of the budget and it doesn't feel good. I do my very best every day, I take notes and look things up when I get home, I even started reading student books again just to "catch up". But I still doubt myself – all the time. I also compare myself with others who seem to know it all. I try to tell myself to stop overthinking because I know that I am new to the graphic design world, but I don't know how to start to become a "real" graphic designer.

    Have you met other designers who struggle with self confidence and do you have any kind of advice on how to get over it?

  21. I'm literally in tears because of just knowing that there are others out there that have walked the same dark path that I walk on. It motivates me in such a way that I feel like it's possible to be on top of the world.

  22. Just what the doctor ordered. Thank you for this segment. I'm in the process still of killing the girl and unleashing the woman. It's been hard and is still taking a long time to do it, but talks like this really help remind me what my end goal is.

    Chris Do and the guys at The Blind and The Futur are my mentors!

  23. Explorer metaphor is great. I kind of learnt the same thing with tackling uphills on a mountain bike. Don't look at the top of the hill, but focus on what's in front of the front tire. Achieving the small goals gets you to your end goal.

  24. turn yourself into a hermit. My parent have their own life. Your parents may be different then mine. if they see you as a business investment for their future retirement. ( some working class asian do this to their kids ) you need to get away from them. not look for external validation from anyone else by you. sometime happiness is loneliness of doing your own thing the way you want to do it, learn from people you admire. and pay the rent flipping burgers. but then. I can't speak for you.

  25. Beautiful conversation. The way you honored the emotion of the young woman and what she was struggling with touched my heart. You are so much more than a designer Chris. You are thoughtful and insightful and you bring all your experience to bear to help others struggling to just get their passion out.

  26. Small goals – funny I posted about this the other day.
    https://twitter.com/Davidious2000/status/898198514693533696

    Chris Do I love your videos. I feel like every one of them is focused towards me. The topics are things I need to learn about and change. Bro♥ 😀

  27. I have one question, what if u tell urself u did well (and u did put in alot of effort and not be distracted etc), but the feedbakc from others is totally different, how should i react/ not go back to the "dark side"

  28. I just started last year and I'm 30. hahaha. I wish I pursued design in college and not follow what my parents want

  29. Just found this older series of videos – awesome content as always. Really appreciate Chris opening up on the darkness and how he overcame that.

  30. Thank you Chris! So often I get overwhelmed by the mountain and trying to figure out how to get to the mountain that I start criticising myself because I'm not near the peak. I have to remind myself to make things smaller and simpler and trust that i'll get there in time. I struggle a lot with confidence in my work and in my life. This was a great reminder that it comes from a calm place and that I shouldn't let others define my worth.

  31. Man. A lot of feelings (between parts 1 & 2).

    Someday, one of these days, I hope I get the chance to tell the story of how I made it and where I came from to get there. Inspiring story, Chris!

    P.S. Thank you for the mentorship-by-YouTube!

  32. I feel sick I have just found this channel, I wish I found something like this in my 20s. I found it soo hard to find a Graphic Design job. I am now working a normal 9-5 at the age of 35.. I still feel like I didn't try hard enough, but I find it hard to try over again at such a late stage.. Do you think 35 is still late.. If I have no hope at this age, what is the point of ever trying anything new at all to better my life.. what do you suggest?

  33. I forgot about the Kanye thing lol. My biggest problem is that little voice that's always just waiting. He doesn't speak up all the time but when he's quiet it feels like he's just sitting there judging. (this sounds crazy but best way I can explain it) It's like my own mind is waiting for something to happen so that it can jump in and say "I told you so". It's hard to ignore I have really good days/weeks where everything is on point and I'm crushing it but the second I lay down the doubt comes in and it's like nothing I did that week matters bc "it's just a matter of time until it fails". The hardest part is that I can look at my work and how far I've come and validate that's not the truth but when those times come none of my logic or coping mechanisms matter. It's like it's so ingrained into me that I just don't know how to ignore it.

  34. This was published 2 years ago but this is still a great learning material for the next generation graphic designers. Thanks for sharing your wisdom Chris Do. God bless you.

  35. Mr. Do what great words of wisdom this young man will never forget neither will I. I listen I take my part and work with it thank you so much for these with wonderful full of wisdom videos👏👍

  36. One quote I've adopted. Seek Criticism not praise. That helps in so many ways, take your self criticism for example, as you're so close to whatever you've created, you see what's "wrong" so you think everyone else sees it. So you ask, expecting that person to see exactly that and they completely miss it, mention something else or see nothing to critic…So here's another piece of observation. Have little to no expectation, that's getting into the realm of stoicism, but life gets a lot simpler.

  37. These talks are "legitness"! haha thanks man <3
    this will become huge in the future i think! 😀

    ok lets start to form a better person than i am now. thanks again.

  38. Thank you Chris.. This helped me a lot.. As a graphic designer at the age of 17, right now I'm inspired a damn lot.. Thanks again 🔥

  39. This is a great video, however for someone who is in their mid-thirties who went to design school 15 years ago and squandered that opportunity…how do you get back that time? There is no "i'm going to focus on school and only school" I have a wife and a baby on the way and a job and a mortgage, etc etc… I feel like I don't know where to go from here or how to even get to that point of success…the self doubt and lack of education is real..

  40. I feel like i had to watch this over over again because everytime someone ask me what I am going to school for? And i tell them Graphic Design and then i get a side eye or the "uuhhhh" reaction that im not going to get good pay for it. 😶😶😶

  41. I've been making an experiement with myself, getting away of every video or content from you guys and now i came back and now i can tell OH MY GOD! The wisdom that your share is like a new reality, everytime i revisited a video i watched several months ago i fell in total peace, no just with myself but with everything around me. Now in 2019, i overcomed huge things and met awesome people and professionals but there's something that happens every time i saw, read or listen your content, i get up and recover every piece of my exploded brain. Love you guys, you ROCK! I wish to meet you someday and i'll make it.

  42. I like the Jim Rohn comment very much. Most times a few of my top 5 associates are online mentors. May sound funny, but it does make a tremendous difference. Throwing some appreciation your way. 🙂

  43. Man, I did not expect to be personally attacked watching this XD. I'm still a student, and I really resonated with what the girl at 6:36 was saying. Your advice there was really something I needed to hear, especially right now. Well really, all the advice I've heard from these videos has been great. "Taking the first step is the hardest step." I really needed that! Thank you!

  44. I seriously teared up just now in your conversation with Ruby. The feelings and thought are very similar to my own situation and emotions. That internal voice is the bane of my creativity at times. It get so hard to over come it. I found this channel googling about setting rates for artwork, and it is truly one of the best things ive ever found online. I loved the statement about “hijacking your mentors “ because i have definitely made you my mentor. Thank you Chris.

  45. So many passionate designers (esp children of Asian parents) have to deal with these struggles as designers. Totally empathise with these young ones going through this – Such a important and incredible message here.

  46. Jim Rohn is dead!? I've been listening to his videos as I drive to work. Very educational and inspirational. RIP JIM Rohn, thanks for being one of my mentors!

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