Everyone desires to be self-confident. We want to feel good about ourselves and about our lives. It’s a natural desire, but it isn’t a skill that comes quite so naturally. Self-confidence is something that requires a conceited effort every day, founded upon positive thinking and a healthy outlook on life. Fortunately, your journey to self-confidence doesn’t have to be a blind grab for things that might or might not work.
These ten steps can make a world of difference when it comes to developing your self-confidence. Some will be easier than others, but all are essential building blocks to improving the way you look at and think about yourself.
Take yourself off of auto-pilot
Day after day, we do the same things, think the same way. According to Albert Einstein, insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results. Take yourself off of auto-pilot. Stop repeating patterns that keep you stuck in the same place. By engaging actively in your daily life, you will find yourself capable of changing your perceptions about yourself and the world around you. Begin to make conscious decisions when it comes to how you live your life. This is the first, and perhaps most essential, step to taking back your self-confidence.
Face your fears
Sit down with yourself and find time to truly be honest about what it is that you’re afraid of. Everyone is afraid of something. Do you have a fear of success? Of failure? Maybe you’re terrified of public speaking. These are common phobias, but they’re some of the ones that will keep you from being confident in yourself. A common piece of advice is to do one thing that scares you every day. Apply for that job you don’t think you’ll get; you may just earn yourself an interview. Enroll in those college classes that you’ve been avoiding because you doubt your own intelligence. Put yourself out there. You might just find that there was nothing to be afraid of.
Don’t feel like you have to do everything yourself
No one is in this world alone. Family, friends, and colleagues – they’re all here to help you. There is no shame in asking for support when you need it. Even just a few positive words can go a long way to keeping us from feeling like we’ve failed. Asking for help is not the same as giving up or taking the easy way out. Humans are, by their very nature, pack-minded. The lone wolf stereotype is idealized far too much. Embrace the aid of those around you, allow them to help you on your journey.
Learn to take risks in your life
Ask yourself: what is a life lived without regret? What are the things that you will regret not doing later in life, and what is holding you back? Taking risks is a terrifying, yet particularly helpful, way to boost your self-confidence. When you do something you’ve told yourself you will never be able to do, you prove those limiting beliefs wrong. By taking risks in life, you open doors and windows that you may have never dreamed would be open to you. The more risks you take, the more you will become confident in yourself and your abilities.
Don’t listen to the self-sabotaging voices of doubt in your head
Everyone has a voice in their head telling them what they can and cannot do, what is wise and what is foolish. The problem arises when this voice tries to keep you where you think you’re safe. Maybe the voice tells you that you aren’t good enough to apply for that promotion, or that you’re too old or too young for that. This voice is one of self-sabotage, and it is detrimental to your self-confidence. Learn how to listen to what it says, but in return, tell the voice “thank you for your input, but I’m going to do this anyway.” You’ll be amazed at what you can accomplish and how much better you feel about yourself.
Focus on solutions
It’s easy to let ourselves feel weighed down by the problems in our lives. We feel unfulfilled, depressed, and inadequate. The self-confident individual knows to look not directly at these problems, but instead at the solutions to them. Rather than wallow in pity for ourselves, we need to focus on how to get out of the ruts we find ourselves in. If you feel stuck in your job, focus on improving yourself through education or additional training. By finding the solutions to our problems and acting upon them, you can build up your self-confidence and find the path you wish to follow.
Do more of the things that you enjoy
Miserable people all too often choose to do things that will only keep them miserable. For some, it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy in which they tell themselves that they don’t deserve to do what they love. Nothing could be more false. Self-confident people do things that make them happy. Get out your old paints and create something new. Go for a hike. Listen to your favorite music. When you do things that you enjoy, your body will release chemicals that make you happy. Happy people are confident people.
Make your self-worth independent from outside validation
All of us are guilty of looking outside of ourselves for validation of our own worth. While getting outside validation is a wonderful thing, we can’t live off of the scraps thrown to us by others on occasion. Learn to validate yourself, appreciate your own worth. This can be an incredibly difficult change to make, but once you figure out how to appreciate your own worth, you’ll find yourself much happier and confident that you have ever been.
Visualize yourself as you want to be
Too often, we look at ourselves and see only what is in front of us in the present. We focus on where we are, what we look like, who we surround ourselves with. While it is important that we look at these things, it is essential for our self-confidence that we also think about what we want to be in the future. Where you are now is not where you will be for the rest of your life. By picturing the future, we give ourselves goals to strive for. Be confident in who you desire to become and pursue that vision.
Don’t beat yourself up for failure
You will fail. This is a simple fact of life. Everyone fails at something, at some point. But failure isn’t the bad word most people make it out to be. Failure is a way to tell us that the approach we made may not be the right one. Learn from your mistakes, pick yourself back up, and try again with the new knowledge that you’ve gained about what might not have worked for you. Don’t let the concept of failure keep you from trying. Like a child who falls off of their bicycle, get right back on. Remember, failing means that you put yourself out there to try in the first place, and that’s perhaps the bravest thing you could possibly do.
If you feel you need extra help to guide you towards developing self-confidence, schedule a free consultation with a life coach. During your consultation, we can give you the information you need to decide if hiring a life coach is the right step for you.