Ready to learn something new? here is another life lesson, as you should know Confidence truly is the key that unlocks all doors. Learn how to boost your confidence and self-esteem so you can continue to level up in business and in life.
Boost Your Confidence
Confidence is one of the most important qualities to have in life. It impacts you on a personal level, professionally and even socially.
While it’s easy to assume confident people are just “born that way,” the reality is you can boost your confidence and self-esteem regardless of whether it’s something that comes naturally to you.
Here are tips to become more confident in your abilities so that you can finally step into your potential and go after the opportunities you want for yourself and your future.
1. Start by acknowledging your accomplishments
Give yourself credit where it is due! You have achieved many things in your life, big and small, and you should be proud of that. Make a “win” list of the things that you are proud of and keep it visible, especially on the days that you need an extra boost.
2. Think about the qualities that make you unique
No one else has the same combination of qualities as you do, so celebrate that! Consider how you can amplify your strengths and don’t dim your light. Start by sharing your talents with others and allowing the joy it brings you to fuel your next positive step forward. Similar to your “win” list, write an “I am” list with all of the amazing qualities you possess.
3. Do the work
Nothing boosts your confidence more than knowing that you’re prepared. Trust yourself and practice in advance if you know your knowledge may be tested. Simulating the experience and how you’ll handle the challenges will help boost your confidence. Additionally, committing to doing one thing a day that lights you up and brings you joy will build your confidence and keep your mindset in a great place.
4. Address your fears head-on
Fear can be one of the most debilitating emotions and can shatter your confidence if you’re not careful. Instead of empowering the fear, come up with a game plan for how you will address it if, by chance, it actually happens.
5. Dress the part
How you show up matters. You don’t have to wear expensive clothes or the latest trend to make a statement and feel great. Take pride in your appearance and how you present yourself. Make sure your clothes fit well and you’re comfortable both sitting and standing.
6. Smile and stand tall
It’s amazing what posture and a smile can do for your confidence level. Practice standing or sitting tall with your chin up and shoulders back as much as you can. We’ve all become a little more accustomed to hunching over the computer in our very virtual world, so there may be some additional correcting that needs to occur. Try smiling when you feel less confident and watch what it does to your mood. Science has shown that the mere act of smiling can lift your mood, lower stress and boost your immune system because it naturally releases endorphins and serotonin, both of which increase your happiness. Do this throughout the day and appreciate the difference you feel when you do.
7. Fake it until you make it
Sometimes in order to become more confident, you need to act like you already are confident. By doing this, over time you will start to feel more self-assured. Try listening to affirmations and guided meditations to start reframing the thoughts you fill your mind with and identify statements that help elevate your mindset. Try looking in the mirror and saying “I am enough” first thing in the morning and give yourself a “high five.” It’s incredible what these small actions can do for your confidence and self-esteem.
8. Be around other positive people who will support and encourage you on your journey
Sometimes you might benefit from “borrowed confidence,” and by that, I mean the support and belief that others have in you. Make sure that those around you are lifting you up, not pulling you down, and graciously accept any motivating comments, compliments or support you receive from them. Do not downplay your achievements, strengths or wins. When you do, you’re signaling to yourself that you’re not as incredible as you truly are, and that limiting belief can hinder your level of confidence.
9. Visualize yourself achieving your goals
Seeing yourself successful will help boost your confidence and give you the motivation to keep going. When it comes time to make moves, focus on what the outcome will do for your future to keep yourself moving forward. When you’re connected to your “why,” you’re less likely to get in your own head and deter yourself from forward momentum.
10. Take care of your mental and physical health
Your confidence is directly connected to how you feel. Eat well, exercise and get enough sleep. Pay attention to not only physical signs and symptoms, but also mental-health changes that need to be addressed. If you don’t make time for wellness, you’ll be making time for illness, so create a routine for yourself that helps both areas. When you’re in a good place mentally and physically, you’re much more likely to have the confidence you need to make the next positive move in the direction you want to go.
11. Adopt a growth mindset and don’t focus on perfection
You’ll build your confidence, rather than allowing yourself to believe that you are either a success or a failure. When you see and acknowledge what you’re learning and how you’re developing, you’ll see your confidence simultaneously improve because you’re giving yourself the chance to step outside your comfort zone and learn new things.
12. Keep doing it
Repetition builds resilience and grit, which, in turn, boost your confidence. Knowing that you are capable of making progress and navigating challenges will undoubtedly make it easier the next time you do something that requires your confidence to show up.
How to Be More Confident
As an entrepreneur, it can be challenging to be confident when there are so many variables that go into making your business a success. You might think that once you’ve achieved business success that it will give you a confidence boost. In reality, though, confidence in yourself and what you can accomplish is what will help you become successful in the first place.
Considering that the life and work of an entrepreneur is about constantly pushing boundaries and going beyond your comfort zone, staying confident is easier said than done. It’s easy for self-doubt to set in the minute something doesn’t go as planned or someone tells you “no” or “it can’t be done.” It’s your confidence that helps you push forward, say “yes” to the opportunity and prove that it can be done.
As the leader of your startup or company, working on your self-confidence is a vital part of your personal development and leadership growth. Confident people who are leaders can influence others and get them to believe in the same vision. However, low self-confidence remains a key challenge for many entrepreneurs.
Push through your self-doubts and build your confidence levels to take on everything from business decisions, to public speaking, to social situations with these mental hacks.
- Don’t listen to self-limiting beliefs
Whether they were instilled in us by parents or other adult figures in our lives, our limiting beliefs might have convinced us to focus on what we can’t do or what might never be possible. Remember, though, that at one time we were enthusiastic children who believed we could be or do anything!
Wherever possible, it’s important to quiet those negative thoughts that are providing reasons why you can’t do something. Instead, take on an uncomfortable situation or try something new and see what happens. Should you succeed at it, you can permanently shut down many self-limiting beliefs.
- Don’t always rely on your memory for accurate information
Our memory does serve us well in certain situations. However, it can also be our own worst enemy. That’s because it comes with confirmation bias already built-in.
Our brain’s memory does not store information in the same way it was originally presented. What we see and remember is based on our pre-existing beliefs, values and self-perception.
If you have low self-esteem, then your brain tends to confirm those ideas, bolstering your lack of confidence. Every time you remember a certain event, you think of the bad aspects of it, such as the mistakes you made.
To counteract that reaction, improve your self-image and build confidence, it is important to get other perspectives on these situations. These perspectives are best obtained from someone you respect and admire, such as a family member, friend, colleague or mentor. Your trust and respect for the person offering perspective will help you see past your own thoughts on the matter. These external impressions can be invaluable in helping you rethink things and refocus on the positives.
3. Talk yourself out of negative self-talk
Negative thoughts do damage to confidence, but you can boost your self-esteem by using positive affirmations to transform your mindset. There is a lot to be said about the power of positive self-talk as a way to work past challenges and barriers, including those you put in front of yourself.
You can talk yourself out of fear, self-doubt, and fixation on past mistakes by reminding yourself of your capabilities and accomplishments. These “pep” talks can also help you work through a challenge by reflecting on what you can do or how you can find a possible solution. Through proactive discussions with yourself about what can be done, you stop focusing on the fear that you won’t be able to solve a problem.
4. Counter negative thoughts with positive ones
A lack of confidence often originates from negative thoughts that chip away at us. These thoughts destroy our self-image and self-worth. They are not easy to get rid of, either. To do so, you will need to stifle each negative thought with multiple positive thoughts. Have positive affirmations ready to say to yourself or out loud. Reflect on each positive notion before saying or thinking another one.
Don’t think of it as ignoring or suppressing negative thoughts, because they will still be there to take a swipe at your self-confidence later on. Instead, acknowledge the bad thoughts and lack of self-confidence before replacing them with an inner dialogue composed of positive ideas, including your accomplishments and capabilities.
5. Be curious
Curiosity helps you grow. More importantly, it can motivate you to try new things and be open to fresh perspectives and ideas. Going through the process of experiencing these new things, perspectives and ideas can help boost confidence.
Being curious can give your mind something to actively focus on so it stays busy on positive things. It also can point you in new directions that you didn’t know were possible. In doing so, you can change your life for the better. Any positive results you create will, in turn, help build your self-confidence.
6. Gain control by facing your fears
When we feel we are in control, there is a sense of confidence and comfort that surrounds us. It’s when we are afraid that we feel the most out of control. While it may seem counterintuitive, this is the time to move closer to what scares us or makes us feel threatened. By doing so, we are actively going after what scares us. And, when we do, we can eliminate the threat and fear.
The result of taking such action makes us more confident because we feel more capable. Plus, provided that nothing bad happened to us when we went after what was scaring us, it’s a win to add to our confidence scorecard.
7. Identify where you lack confidence and what can give you confidence
It’s also important to identify and define the specific areas where you don’t feel confident. Does it relate to your knowledge and experience in doing things related to your business? Is it your body image? Or, do you struggle with public speaking and making eye contact with strangers?
Building confidence can still be challenging even when you know where you are lacking, but it does help you put your energy into the right areas. You can also bolster your effort to become more confident by concentrating on those areas where you are already confident. Thinking about the situations where you felt empowered can help you re-tap those emotions or actions to use for the areas where you still feel self-doubt.
8. Don’t compare yourself
When you see others and their accomplishments on social media, it’s easy to lose confidence. Comparing yourself to others, you might think you have failed or lack worth because it looks as though others have so much more money, admiration and success.
Nothing good comes out of comparing yourself. Those other people are not you. Their stories are different. You also don’t know how many times they might have failed or made mistakes. It doesn’t make sense to make judgments based only on the visible, highly edited parts of someone else’s life when your path and life are completely different.
If you must compare, then use yourself as the measuring stick. When you do, you may be able to see just how far you have come, including wins and improvements. Those accomplishments are what should keep you striving to do better.
9. Get new skills and experience
Make changes in those areas where you feel you are lacking by taking classes that will help you acquire new skills. Then, put those skills to work and gain new experiences. As you get better at those skills and expand your capabilities, your confidence will organically grow. Turn to other resources like podcasts, conferences, books and mentors to further build confidence.
Confidence starts with you
Becoming more confident starts and ends with you, because you can make decisions and choices. Reminding yourself that you can choose to be confident goes a long way toward actually being confident. Once you start believing what you tell yourself, confidence levels can rise along with success, happiness and satisfaction.
Thanks to Allison Walsh & John Boitnott for publishing such article!