By Sheila Blagg for GalTime.com

Insecurities. We’ve all got ‘em. The million dollar question is, is it possible to get rid of them? Although most of us will probably never be completely insecurity-free, I believe that it is possible to work toward a goal of reducing our insecurities. First, we have to pinpoint where they stem from.

Your insecurities may be the cause of one simple comment made by a schoolmate. Or, maybe a “loved one” voiced a critique that has stayed with you no matter how hard you’ve tried to shake it. For me, many of my insecurities are a result of my relationship with my father.

I grew up with a father who assured me that I’d never be good enough. He also cemented into my head that I was a mistake and that I ruined his life. After my father was through with me, my first husband continued feeding my insecurities with comments that told me that I should have been better than I was. Whether he was comparing me to my friends, the wives of men that he worked with, or any other woman, I always fell short of the person he felt I should be.

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Whose Problem is it Anyway?

I now know that the people who went out of their way to bring me down are the ones who have the insecurities, not me. My father and my first husband made themselves feel better by making me feel “less than.”

Take a look at your life, your insecurities, and ask yourself “Did I get here on my own?” Is each self-criticism something that you truly do not like about yourself, or are your insecurities the result of the unkind words or actions of someone else? The majority of my insecurities were rooted in me by someone else. They are not mine to own, nor do I allow them power in my life any longer.

Make a list for yourself. Write down all of the positives that you like about yourself. Make a list of the negatives, too. Then, as you are reading the good and the bad, ask yourself, ”Is this truly how I feel, or has someone made me feel this way?”

Related: Men Have It As Tough As Women?

Keep the positives on your list; they work for your better good. But, if you come across a negative that started from someone else’s actions or words, then it’s not yours to own. Get rid of it.

Analyzing and owning (or not owning) your positives and negatives is not an easy process, but it’s also not as hard as you may think. Every day, take steps to rid yourself of any and all negativity by reinforcing the belief that you are strong, beautiful, loved, and important. Anything other than positive thoughts have no place in your life, so I want you to reject all negatives as soon as you possibly can.

Fill yourself with your chosen positive thoughts every single day. Plant your seed, water it, and watch it grow. The more you believe in yourself, the less power others have over you and your future. You control your thought process. You control what you allow to take root in your life. Do the work, get rid of the bad, and start your life as you want it.

Take the first step. The results will be more than worth it!