GROW YOUR CONFIDENCE AND SELF-ESTEEM
Self-confidence is vital in almost every aspect of our lives, yet many people struggle to find it.
Are you a confident person? Have you always been so confident?
I was a very very shy person, with a low self-esteem. It was so low that I was influenced by every person that came into my life. I was absolutely sure that others were better than me in every way: from better looking to better at work, and that influenced all my relationships and my profession. I was instead ``confident`` that others were better in any possible way.
I was not able to see the real me. I found out about self-worth and self-esteem and confidence in my late 30th. What saved me was that I knew deep inside, that I was a good, kind, loving, caring, good looking and intelligent person. I was an unpolished diamond. It took me years to build on my self-esteem and my confidence. I started my journey in life with a confidence of -100, I arrived in my 30th at 0 and from that point I started to build brick by brick my self-esteem , my self-respect and confidence, and now am at +100 and still building. But you know what? It is better to build from 0 to 100 than it was from -100 to 0. This negative part is filled with negative beliefs, with critical voices, with negative self-talk and with negative voices of people around me. Now I know who I am when I look at myself in the mirror from inside out. You can see that in my pictures, you can see that in my attitude, in my way of being, in my courage to think outside the box and to leave the comfort zone. A huge transformation that took me so many years and and so much sorrow especially from -100 to zero. Now you can learn from that and you can be guided to become confident more quickly and pain free.
If there is something that you can learn from my story it is:
1.Identify your negative thoughts that might sound like this: “I can’t do that,” “I will surely fail”, “no one wants to hear what I have to say.” This inner voice is negative and will hold you back from achieving high self-esteem and greater self-confidence. Be comfortable with fear. You may think that people who are self-confident are never fearful. This simply is not true. Perhaps your fear is: speaking in front of a group, introducing yourself to someone you don’t know, or asking your boss for a raise or a girl out J. Take it slowly and step by step..Be patient and kind with yourself. Sometimes you go backwards to go forwards. Gaining self-confidence does not happen overnight. You might try something new and not succeed. If possible, see what lessons are there to be learned. Self-confidence needs to be nurtured and grown.
2.Turn your negative thoughts to positive thoughts. Start with just a few positive thoughts a day. Maintain a positive support network. Connect with those around you, whether they are family or friends. You already know you need to stay away from people that make you feel bad.
Even well-intended family members with their opinions about what you “should” be doing can be destructive to your self-confidence so keep your distance especially in the early stages of learning to be confident.
3.Bounce back from your mistakes. Remember that no one is perfect. Even the most confident people have insecurities. If you’ve made a mistake, the best thing you can do is to recognize it, apologize, and make a plan for avoiding it in the future. Don’t let one wrong turn make you think you don’t have what it takes to be confident.
4.Stop comparing yourself to others. If you want to design your self-confidence, then you have to focus on improving your own life for the better. If you want to build up your confidence, then you need to know that there will always be someone who is prettier, smarter, and richer than you, just like there will always be someone who is less attractive, less intelligent, and less wealthy than you are; all of this is irrelevant, and what is relevant is caring about your own goals and dreams.
You may lack confidence because you’re convinced that everyone else has it better than you do, as I told you I did it for so long. But remember that everyone has different paths in life and we are not here to compare to others.
5.Avoid perfectionism. Perfectionism makes you feel not enough, only paralyzes you and keeps you from accomplishing your goals. If you feel like everything has to be perfectly, then you’ll never be truly happy with yourself or your circumstances.
6.Practice gratitude. Often at the root of lack of confidence is a feeling of not having enough of something, whether it’s emotional validation, good luck, or money. By acknowledging and appreciating what you do have, you can combat the feeling of being incomplete and dissatisfied. Finding the inner peace will do wonders for your confidence. Take some time to think about which people in your life really make you feel good. Make a goal to spend more time with people who are supportive and uplifting and share the same vision as you do.
7.Seek to help others. When you know you’re kind to the people around you, will boost your self-confidence. Find a way to make helping others a part of your weekly routine. The beauty in the act of helping others, will build your confidence because you’ll see that you have a lot to offer.
How can you start your journey to be confident enough to pursue your dreams?
First: Accept compliments gracefully. Many people with a low self-esteem have difficulty taking compliments; they assume that the person complimenting them is either mistaken or lying. If you find yourself responding to a compliment by rolling your eyes, saying, “Yeah, right,” and not believing is possible to be so, you should reframe your response to compliments. Take it to heart and respond positively. (Saying “thank you” and smiling works well). Let the person giving the compliment know that you really appreciate it, and work to reach the point where you are able to truly accept the compliment at heart. You will see how good you will feel after that! It is not that hard, is it?
Second: Set goals that make the most of your strengths, that minimize your weaknesses, that take advantage of your opportunities, and start to identify the first step you need to take. Make sure it’s a very small step, because breaking down large goals into smaller steps makes them seem far more attainable. It also gives you the possibilities to track your progress and reflect on how far you’ve come already.
Third: ask for help and guidance from a coach ( me for exampleJ ) to support, encourage, acknowledge and keep you accountable for your new plan of becoming the confident version of yourself!