Self confidence is one thing that most people think other people have except for themselves. All of us were endowed with special attributes though we rarely recognize these gifts. We may see that men were not created equal but there surely must be a universal stuff that balances all things.
We are all capable of being self confident. It not a thing that we can touch nor see. It not something that was given to the person sitting next to you while you may not share the blessings it might result to. It is not something that we don’t all have. You may not posses it now yet this does not imply that you are deprived of the capacity to develop it. Everyone is entitled to self confidence and luckily, all opportunities are laid in our front, only we have to recognize them.
We cannot afford to lose the value of one lifetime just because we missed too much of good life in exchange for not having been able to live our dreams. Dreams that were not driven by the confidence to pursue them. The key is to develop self confidence and escape from the demons of low self confidence.
To overcome low self confidence you must be able to have faith in yourself. You need to feel good about your being you. This all boils down from appreciating the things that we are capable of doing and in accepting the fact that some things just wont change however hard we try changing them.
One good example is a physical condition that you have to struggle with. A couple of things may help you with them but this would not erase the facts that your physical conditions may hamper you from developing your confidence.
Ask yourself- what makes you more confident of yourself? Most likely, these are things that deal more on the physical attributes that one has and one can acquire.
Our standards of confidence will affect virtually all aspects of our happiness. Say, we find more value from being good looking then it is best that you start resolving your low self confidence by making yourself more beautiful. Luckily for us, there are various methods of transformation and enhancements.
However, if your standards deal more on the innate beauty a person may have like goodness of attitude or skills and talents, you may start revamping yourself by strengthening these areas.
Low self confidence is more aggravated by our failures. Failing is inevitable and so it must be dealt with a light heart. If you always take your failures seriously and amplify them by ruminating at your mistakes, then it is likely that you are close to self destruction. Practice an attitude that celebrates on victories but forgets about your own stupidities.
People are subject to committing mistakes, you must understand that. And your failures must not be made an excuse to stop trying. Think of your losses as blessings that you must accept and be thankful that they come across your path. This is one proof that the Creator spends more time on you than you would have first imagined.
Instead of allowing these to trouble you, treat them as your learning grounds for not committing mistakes. Then don’t allow these failures to hold back your growth.
You see, in the end it all lies in the attitude we take to deal things out. We must be very careful with the way we handle things. If we think too negative of ourselves and the events interplaying with our lives, we would never learn to get over our low self confidence.
Main Cause of Lack of Self-Confidence
Lack of self confidence is caused by fear. These fears include the fear of failure, ridicule, rejection, disrespect etc. When these fears are not confronted and overcome on a regular basis, they tend to hang around, hiding just below your conscious awareness and eating away at your ability to function comfortably and at higher capacity.
These fears or this lack of confidence then begins to manifest itself in many visible ways in your life. Some of the noticeable problems may become quite serious and might include:
• Getting passed over for a promotion
• Inability to confront people who cause problems for you
• Paralysis in the area of meeting members of the opposite sex
• Unable to address or speak in front of large or small groups
• Excessive indecision
• Poor leadership
• Nervousness in job interviews
As you probably guessed, there can be many other reasons for confidence building as well. These types of problems can lead to failures or perceived failures which work to bring your self confidence and self esteem even lower. The resulting effects can become a slow downward spiral in extreme cases and can eventually progress toward other serious problems including depression if not dealt with adequately. Sometimes the problems are not quite as serious as this of course, but none-the-less troublesome or annoying. We all want to succeed, we want to be capable, powerful and free to progress toward our goals unhindered by the setbacks and dragging weights of low self confidence. This is why building confidence is such a worthwhile goal.
Building Self Confidence
The good news is that anyone can learn how to build confidence! The first step is to recognize the problem and begin to seek a solution. If that is why you are here, then you are already on the right track. The next step is of course, to get your self educated. For decades, scholars, counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists and many other professionals have studied this widely encountered problem. The results have yielded tons of useful information as well as proven techniques and methods for building self confidence. We learn from their collective efforts that building confidence becomes easy when we are armed with the right knowledge. You can incorporate these processes into your daily life and with a little effort and persistence; you will make a huge impact on your own level of self confidence.
Have you ever seen those people who seem to have it all? They seem to have charisma, boldness and a sense that life is going to be great because they will make it so. They seem fearless! These people get all the breaks! They succeed in the workplace, are well respected, are calm in the face of authority or confrontation, are well liked, socially capable, popular and of course charming and attractive to the opposite sex.
Steps to Build Self-Confidence
Consider using these steps as the building blocks for greater confidence and self esteem.
1. Start writing a journal
One way to do an effective self-analysis is to start with a personal journal or diary. Write down your perceptions about self-confidence. Write any thoughts that come to mind. Also, try to ask yourself what stops you from getting to a point in your life that you want to achieve. This practice does not work for everyone, so if, after experimenting with a journal, it does not increase your self-confidence, try another technique.
2. Do a self-evaluation
Learn to assess yourself objectively. Doing so allows you to prevent the constant state of confusion that comes from dependence on other people’s views. Concentrating internally on how you think and feel about your own behavior, lifestyle, work, etc. will provide you a stronger sense of self awareness.
3. Accept and love yourself
With a self-assessment comes the realization of your weak points. Do not be dissuaded by this discovery. Learn to embrace and accept yourself for who you are as a person. Everyone has his own distinctive abilities, qualities, and characteristics. We are all unique. Never compare yourself to others. In your journal, make an inventory of things that make you unique. For example, you can make a list under the title, “What Makes Me Unique.” Write down interests and preferences that make you distinct. Be proud of your achievements and revel in your uniqueness. You must learn to accept and be proud of who you are. Only then will you feel your self-confidence shoot up to the skies!
4. Concentrate on your strengths rather than on your weaknesses
Confidence comes from within. Concentrate on positive things about yourself. Remember the past is over; you can only change the future. Write down ten positive things about yourself. Go through your journal and look at all the positive things about yourself. Concentrate on your potentials. These are the reasons why you love and believe in yourself. Give yourself credit for every positive thing you have written about yourself. Remember, you are somebody special.
5. Overcome fears and doubts
Some people feel insecure, thinking they can never be successful in anything they do. Such insecurity will only lead to lack of confidence in yourself and in everything you do in your life.
Keep in mind: If you haven’t tried something, you can never say that you will fail in it. For instance, your boss is asking you to supervise a group but you fear that you will make a mess out of it. Such fear will stop you from taking on that job. However, if you’re a confident person, you would not think twice about failing and willingly take on that job. Lack of confidence can affect your career growth.
6. Motivate yourself
Whether it is for a presentation, an interview, or anything at all, remind yourself that you can do it. Motivate yourself every day; and soon, you will find your confidence level increasing.
A helpful way to motivate yourself is by keeping a list of at least five things that you did well for that day. This activity reaffirms your strong belief that you can achieve what you set your mind to accomplish.
7. Engage in positive self-talk
Use positive self-talk as a chance to displace destructive thoughts crowding your mind. When you catch yourself thinking negative thoughts, remind yourself to “stop” and replace them with positive thoughts. One good way to crowd out negative thoughts is by reading and listening to positive things. Reading and listening to positive and affirming materials will enrich your abilities and talents to develop your self-confidence. Read and listen to inspiring stories of successful individuals. You will discover that a lot of them underwent tough circumstances, had many difficulties and challenges in life, yet they overcame these difficulties and became successful in their endeavors.
8. Visualize your future success
Regularly imagine yourself enjoying success! Feel the excitement, anticipation, exhilaration, and thrill of victory. In order to become more confident, you must picture yourself as a person with high self-esteem. Picture your self tackling a tough challenge and overcoming it with poise and confidence. Use your five senses to make the picture in your mind vivid and seem real. Let us say that as part of the application process to teach at a music school, you will have to give a piano recital to the school’s faculty. You are having trouble relaxing. Imagine your self entering the room and confidently striding towards the piano. Visualize yourself performing with confidence and joy. Imagine your audience clapping their hands and shouting, “Excellent!” Take in the sight, smell and taste of success. Isn’t it exhilarating?
9. Acknowledge your success
Give yourself credit for everything you try. Emphasize the process of achieving, those brave and simple efforts exerted, instead of focusing on success itself as the end product. Congratulate and reward yourself each time you do something that makes you feel satisfied. Treat yourself, you deserve it. Nurture this feeling by reminding yourself of past successes. In your journal, write the instances where you feel the happiest. It may be an incident or performance where you felt appreciation and a deep sense of accomplishment.
Bask on these memories and draw strength from these. Say this aloud, “If I was able to achieve these in the past, I can achieve more today and in the future.”
10. Accept and re-frame failures
It is an indication of a healthy mind if you are able to accept negative aspects of yourself. If you are always crying over the errors that you made in the past, you will never get anywhere.
Always remember that past mistakes and failures cannot be reversed; what is done is done. Accept that mistakes do happen. Understand that every mistake or failure you make is a step towards success. When you recognize mistakes as an opportunity to learn, you minimize fear of failure and boost your confidence.
11. Take risks
Try doing things that you have never tried before. It is always a challenge to do new things. The mere act of accepting these challenges, whether you become successful or not, adds a tremendous boost in your self-confidence. Shrinking from challenges prevents us from learning new skills, discourages us from testing our limits, and forces us to live unexciting lives within our comfort zones. People with high level of self-confidence are not afraid of going out and doing things. They may have limited talent or capability; but going out and doing “it” is no problem for them because they feel confident that they will succeed. They are less afraid of committing mistakes and they utilize more opportunities to succeed. Self-confident people probably commit more mistakes than those who are not self-confident, but they are most likely to have far more enriching successes because of their confidence in themselves.
12. Act confidently
Your success at nearly every endeavor you undertake is largely affected by your self-image. People who have confidence in their self-worth seem to be magnets for success and happiness. Think confident and act confident.
13. Attend seminars
It is good to attend seminars with professional and motivational speakers offering suggestions and guidance on building confidence. During the lecture, you can pick up tips on public speaking by observing the speaker’s body language and the manner he projects himself.
14. Recharge regularly
Arrange to spend time alone to recharge yourself mentally, physically, and spiritually. Take some time off to relax by yourself in a quiet place.
15. Build a network of supportive relationships
One of the most certain ways to increase confidence is to ensure you have love in your life. Love and self-confidence increase when you serve other people and when you nurture your relationships with those who help you grow. A person gets a boost of self-confidence from knowing that the Universe/Source/God supports him/her as he/she pursues his/her purpose in life.