5 Ways to Boost Your Self-Confidence
What exactly is self-confidence? Simply put, it's a feeling of trust in yourself - such as in your abilities, qualities, and decision-making skills. Having a good balance of self-confidence is essential to your mental well-being. Let's take a look at a few benefits of self-confidence as well as how we can boost it if we're feeling not so good about ourselves.
Self-confidence can help you in both your personal & professional relationships. Here are a few positive effects it can have on your life:
When you feel confident about yourself and your work, you will devote yourself to the task instead of frantically worrying that you are not good enough to do the job. You will focus that energy on your efforts and in the end, you're more likely to perform better.
Openness in the sense that you are willing to adventure out there and try new things. When you believe in yourself, you are more open to take on & try various types of work opportunities, promotions, or classes out there. This, in turn, allows you to continue to improve, learn, and grow.
When you have the mentality of "I can do it", no challenge or obstacle will be big enough to keep you down. You will be able to bounce back up and running in no time.
When you have a healthy balance of self-confidence, it can help you filter out relationships that are good for you. People with self-confidence tend to set priorities - putting their own needs and emotions at the top. It can help you better understand who are the ones that are good for you and help you to improve & thrive. It can also give you the strength to walk away from any relationships that don't give you what you deserve or has a negative impact on your mental wellbeing.
Tips to Boost Your Self-Confidence
Thankfully, there are ways to help boost our struggles to believe in ourselves. Here are five strategies you can try to implement:
1. Stop Comparing Yourself
Whether we compare how we look, our skills, our salary, with others - celebrities, friends, & even family - it is an unhealthy habit. In fact one study linked the way we feel about ourselves with envy, another negative trait that severely impacts our mental health. Researchers have found that those who compared themselves often with others tend to experience envy, which leads to them not feeling good about themselves, and then the vicious cycle will repeat itself. So how can we escape this cycle?
Try to notice when you start comparing yourself with others. When you consciously realize that you are comparing, remind yourself that doing so isn't going to help you in any way. Here are a few tips to try to avoid comparing with others:
Do Good to Others
Try to focus on how you can help others, especially those who may not be as fortunate as you, and then you can take notes of how many blessing you already have.
Write Down Your Blessings
When you start feeling envious of others, think about your own strengths and successes. Jot them down in a journal so that you can go back & review them. You can try writing down three points you are grateful for each day. In this way, you can focus on yourself and not on others.
Seek Healthy Relationships
If there are some people in your life who are constantly comparing and judging others or brings out the bad competitive spirit in you, if possible, limit your contact with them. Instead, keep in close contact those who support and motivate you in a positive way to be your best self.
2. Take Care of Your Physical Health
It makes it a lot harder to feel good about yourself when you're not taking good care of your body. So take time for self-care and do something that has a positive impact on your overall physical and mental health - this in turn can help you feel more confident. Here's a few self-care tips:
"You are what you eat." So if junk food is what you commonly stuff yourself with then...you get the picture. When we eat foods that are healthy and good for our body, we feel more energized, stronger, healthier, which in turn can help us boost our self confidence.
When we take time to exercise, at least 15-25 minutes a day, we may feel more energized throughout the day, which can perk up our mood. Also, when exercising helps us to get more in shape and we see the improvement in our body image, strength, or endurance, we will feel more confident and better about ourselves.
Have you have slept very little and woke up the very next day bright and early feeling great? Need we say anymore? Sleep deficiency can have a huge impact not just on our health but on our mood as well, such as our optimism and self-esteem. So, if you're a night owl, try adjusting to a healthy sleep schedule.
3. Practice Self-Compassion
This means treating yourself with kindness even when you make a mistake or fail at something. It's easy to think and speak harshly to ourselves - we are our own worst critic. However, this won't motivate others let along yourself to do better. So the next time you make a mistake, instead of thinking, "Why am I so stupid. Everyone is going to think badly of me. Everything's ruined.", try thinking, "It's ok, everyone messes up sometimes. I can do better next time." This can help us control our negative emotions and help us to feel better about ourselves.
Finding this hard to do? The next time you find yourself beating yourself down at something you didn't do as well as you had hoped, try to think of what you would say to a good friend to encourage them and say that to yourself. Try to laugh it off if possible and think of it as a funny story/memory you can tell about later. Also, it's good to remember, no one is perfect, you don't expect perfection from others, so don't expect it from yourself either.
4. Positive Self-Talk
When you start doubting yourself and the voice inside your head is telling you that you "can't do it", "this is too hard", "don't even bother", put a stop to it. That is negative self-talk. When you start feeling like you're not important and that you don't need to speak up at a meeting or that you're not smart enough to handle a task, remind yourself that what you think about yourself isn't always accurate.
Here are some example of positive self-talk you can try to implement when your negative thoughts race through your head:
- When you're faced with a difficult task or goal, instead of "I can't" or "This is impossible", try telling yourself "I can handle it" or "I'll try".
- When you make a mistake, instead of "I'm not good at anything", try reminding yourself "I can do better next time" or "I learned something."
- When you're faced with public speaking, instead of thinking "I hate speaking in public settings" or " I always make a fool of myself when I talk", try encouraging yourself that "Everyone has strengths and weakness too in speaking."
5. Confront Your Doubts
We tend to put off something that we don't feel confident in till we feel more confident. However, at times, the best way to feel more confident is to tackle what your brain tells you that you can't. Even when you're afraid of embarrassment or think that you're going to mess up, go for it and try anyways! Look at the whole attempt as an experiment. Most of the things we worry about may not even ever happen.
In addition, having a bit of self-doubt is okay. It can help us to avoid over confidence and it may push us even harder to perform better. Don't be afraid to make mistakes or feel anxious. As you continue to face your fears, you will be able to gradually gain more confidence in yourself and minimize those negative doubts in your head about yourself.
If you have struggles with self-confidence, it's okay! Everyone gets it from time to time. However, if you notice that your level of self-confidence severely interferes with all aspects of your life, you should consider speaking to your health care practitioner for professional advice. We hope that these tips can help you start off your new year with a healthier balance of self-confidence!