Self-confidence is extremely important to your health and psychological well-being and working to increase it can help you become more successful in both your personal and professional life.
But, let’s face it, not everyone is born with an in-built sense of self-confidence. Sometimes it can be hard to develop confidence, either because personal experiences have caused you to lose confidence in yourself or because you suffer from low self-esteem which can make you feel insecure and unmotivated.
Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to build and nurture your self-confidence. Some of them are just small changes to your mindset and way of thinking, while others you’ll have to work on for a bit longer to establish them as familiar habits.
1. Practice positive self talk
This is the most important one. You’re never going to feel confident if you have negative commentary running through your mind telling yourself that you’re no good. Think about your self-talk and how that might be affecting your self-confidence. Treat yourself like you would your best friend and cheer yourself on for once! This can be really hard at first, but keep at it!
2. Take care of your body
It’s hard to feel good about yourself if you’re not looking after your body. Not getting enough sleep, eating an unhealthy diet, and not moving your body on a regular basis has more of an impact on your well-being than you think. Studies consistently show that regular physical activity improves body image. And when body image improves, we feel more confident. Make an effort to make self-care a priority. When you’re feeling at your best physically, you’ll naturally feel more confident about yourself.
3. Evaluate your inner circle
This is the time to really evaluate your inner circle, including friends and family. This is a tough one, but it’s time to seriously consider removing yourself from those individuals who put you down and strip your confidence. Give yourself a temporary break and assess how you feel. If you feel better and more confident without them in your life then it’s worth it.
4. Stop comparing yourself to others
Whether you compare how you look to other women on social media, you compare your salary to your friend’s income, or you compare your relationship with someone else’s, comparisons ARE NOT healthy. In fact, studies have found a direct link between envy and the way you feel about yourself. Researchers found that people who compared themselves to others, experienced envy. And the more envy they experienced, the worse they felt about themselves. It can be a vicious cycle.
Try to pick up on times when you compare your wealth, possessions, skills, achievements, and even appearance to others. Just thinking that other people are better or have more can erode your confidence in yourself. When you notice you are making comparisons, remind yourself that doing so isn’t going to help you in any way. Everyone is at different stages of their lives, and everyone’s situation is vastly different. Life isn’t a competition!
5. Look at what you’ve already achieved
It’s easy to lose confidence if you believe you haven’t achieved anything. Make a list of all the things you’re proud of in your life, whether it’s getting a particular job you really wanted or learning a new skill. Keep the list close by and add to it whenever you do something you’re proud of. When you’re low in confidence, pull out the list and use it to remind yourself of all the awesome stuff you’ve done so far!
6. Think of things you’re good at
Everyone has strengths and talents. What are yours? Recognising what you’re good at, and trying to build on those things, will help you to build confidence in your own abilities.
7. Set achievable goals
People often make the mistake of shooting for the moon, and then when they fail, they get discouraged. Instead, shoot for something much more achievable. Set a goal you know you can achieve, and then achieve it. You’ll feel good about that. Now set another small goal and achieve that. The more you achieve small goals, the better you’ll be at it, and the better you’ll feel. Soon you’ll be setting bigger (but still achievable) goals and achieving those too.
Everyone struggles with confidence issues at one time or another. But if your self-confidence issues interfere with your work, your social life, or your education, and you have tried the things we have discussed, it’s definitely worth seeking professional help. Professionals such as counsellors and psychologists can help you develop strategies to build up your confidence. They may also be able to help you understand any underlying problems that might be causing you to feel bad about yourself.
If you want to start taking action towards your health & fitness goals and become the most confident version of you, we’d love to help! Click here to work with us.