3 Ways To Practice Building Self Confidence
This goes out to all the people that are aware of their low self-confidence and feel helpless about it. You're not alone! Here are some ways to practice some positive thinking.
I'm the kind of person that genuinely gets upset when I see someone confident in real life or even on the 'gram. Like... they're fearless, powerful, risk-takers... they're... confident. I was pretty extroverted up until like 5-6 years ago and I'm not sure if this has anything to do with age, but now I'm really not. Now, I reaaaallllly like alone time and I do have a social meter. I realized that the older I got, the more my confidence went down. No clue how it happened. It just did.
I became more and more aware of it - fear of interviews, saying the wrong things out loud, coming off as dumb - I wasn't even confident about how I looked. It got so bad I stopped wearing certain things just because I hated how I looked in it. When you say it out loud, you realize how insane these things are! Even though it made sense to me at the time, I'm sad I even put myself through it.
I knew it was time to make changes. But I also knew it wasn't going to change overnight. Working on your confidence is a VERY. LONG. PROCESS. It's been years and I'm still at it daily! Here are some ways that I practice building self confidence:
Have Small Goals And Stick To Them
One of my biggest insecurities growing up was my legs - All I knew was I wanted bigger and toned legs. My first mistake was having such a big goal that it overwhelmed me. I kept starting and eventually would just quit again and again. Yeah, you should have an ultimate goal - but what's important is breaking that down into mini goals to help monitor your progress. Create a workout plan down to each day, set weight gains/losses for each week, write down how much you want to increase your weights by at the gym each week... whatever it takes. Be strict with your plan and track your progress using a journal. You need to remember that you aren't anywhere closer to your goal by doing nothing! Honestly, seeing your progress written down actually motivates you ESPECIALLY when you think you're getting nowhere. This doesn't apply to just working out - it's for anything you want. You need to work towards it and follow through. The end result will be amazing - I promise you. Just keep going.
Fake It 'Til You Become It
I recently saw this Ted Talk by the incredible Social Psychologist Amy Cuddy where she explains the power of body language towards not only others but also ourselves. She talks about how heavily influenced we are by our 'nonverbals' - our thoughts, feelings, and physiology. After multiple experiments, she confirms that we're more likely to feel more powerful if we act more powerful. Spreading out and being big (like Wonder Woman!) can truly impact how others feel about you AND how you feel about yourself as opposed to slouching, being small, and hiding away. We all know the phrase 'fake it til you make it'. What about faking it until you actually become it? Yeah, our minds can change our bodies - but our bodies can also change our minds. Watch the full clip here!
Focus On The Positive
It's easy to look at / think about yourself and immediately steer towards the negative. First you need to figure out in what situations you're hardest on yourself. When you're in front of a large audience? Around people you don't know? When you're 100% alone? Be aware of when those thoughts really come out. Then you need to train your mind to catch yourself in the middle of those thoughts. Stop them and start trying to look at it positively. If your thought starts out by telling you 'you'll never get that job - they'll see right through you' - stop it. Instead, remind yourself why you could - 'I've been practicing a lot for the interview and have researched about the company. I've prepared myself for this and have previous experience to do this new job well'. Hype yourself up like Dwight hypes himself up with his music and air guitars (I love all my Office fans!). And take my tips from above - stand confident and BE confident (even if it means you're faking it). You'd be surprised how much focusing on the positive can change how you feel about yourself in the moment. I know it's easier said than done and you may feel like you have nothing positive to say. You do. Think hard to find just that one positive thought and put all your focus onto it. The more you do it, the easier it will get.
The thing is, you need to train yourself to be and think differently. Most things don't just happen overnight especially learning to love yourself more. Stop letting those thoughts hold you back from being the best version of yourself! Start small and incorporate these tricks into your everyday life - just like I do. Like I said, I've been at this for years and when I look back, I cannot believe how far I've come without even realizing. Something is better than nothing! All you need is some guidance and a little extra push - this post is your sign! Here's to self love!