As most other terms containing the word “self,” self-confidence is one of the many things we pursue in life. Defined as having the mindset to do a thing, and do it well, self-confidence is the closest thing we have to a super power.
But how do you boost your self-confidence?
How do you grow out of the person that you are in order to become who you want to be?
Assume responsibility for who you are.
The most important part, and the one that all else fails to do much good unless addressed, is taking control of your life.
You are not looking for someone else to save you, you are not putting the blame on external circumstances. You assume responsibility for your actions and for those of the people around you.
Even though it may not be your fault, it is your responsibility to get back up, stronger than you were before.
The supremely self-confident person walks in the direction of their dreams with their head held high, no matter what failures or setbacks they might encounter.
Also, it helps a lot of you do (all or some of) these things:
1. Groom yourself.
It’s rather amazing how much of a difference a shower and a shave can make when it comes to your self-confidence. There have been days when I turned my mood around completely by taking care of this detail.
Because it’s a mindset, self-confidence can often be hacked with little tricks such as this one.
It’s all about small efforts that change our perspective towards one of abundance and calm.
2. Dress up.
If you dress nicely, you’ll feel good about yourself. You’ll feel successful and presentable and ready to conquer the world.
It’s not that you need expensive clothes or a tuxedo, but rather it’s your attention to detail. It’s the way you look in the mirror, and know that you’ve done all that could be done to look your best.
I’d often do this especially when I was broke. Not kidding. I’d suit up because I wanted to feel better about myself.
3. Write down some affirmations.
I used to do these a few years back, when I was struggling with depression, anxiety, and lack of self-esteem so terrible that I couldn’t even look people in the eye.
It felt ridiculous to read all these nice things about me, so I wrote them in the second person: You are smart, you are kind, you are powerful, you are confident.
You are what you think about, you are the story you tell yourself about who you are and what you’ve done.
Never, ever, ever underestimate the power of words.
4. Get to know yourself.
“When there is no enemy within, the enemies outside cannot hurt you.” ― Winston S. Churchill
Get to know yourself. Start listening to your thoughts. Start writing a journal about yourself, and about the thoughts you have about yourself.
Self-awareness is the only thing that truly allows you to change yourself.
Start thinking about your limitations, and whether they’re real limitations or just ones you’ve allowed to be placed there, artificially.
The more you write your thoughts, the easier it becomes to start discerning between the thoughts that belong to the ideal version of you and those that have been put there by those who aim to belittle your ambitions.
5. Be kind and generous.
Maybe this sounds like a cliche to you, but confident people help others. It is easy to pour from an overflowing cup. It is easy to be generous when you yourself have plenty, when you know you can assist others.
Ever read about a knight in shining armor and low self-esteem?
Be your own knight, save your own self first, and you will be able to help others too.
6. Have some clear principles.
Think about your principles …
What is important to you?
How do you define success? How do you define happiness? What does it mean to you to be of service to others?
What does it mean to be competent in life?
If you want to be confident, you need to know what you want, why you want it, and what you’re willing to do to have it.
Your sense of self-worth is intricately tied to the things that you allow, and why you allow them. You won’t be confident until you set certain limits for everything you do on a daily basis.
7. Speak in a slow and controlled manner.
Such a simple thing, but it has a very big difference in how others perceive you.
A person in authority, with authority, speaks slowly. It shows confidence. Someone who feels that they aren’t worth listening to will speak quickly.
This also allows you to think over the words you are going to say. The less you speak, the more competent you are perceived by others. And you will sense this, which in turn will raise your confidence level.
8. Stand tall.
Stand tall and straight, and you’ll feel better about yourself.
One exercise I used to do was imagine having a cape around my shoulders; just like Superman. How would I walk then? I’d visualize that cape, and I’d walk with my head high, proud of who I was.
Another power posture is to sit on a chair with your hands behind your back. Lean back. Relax. Imagine that you’ve just won the lottery.
9. Become really good at something.
Self-confidence means knowing for sure you can do something well. And how do you do that? By working and working and working on bettering yourself.
What areas of your life need improvement? What do you want to be?
Set aside time and work on that, and this new found confidence will reverberate in other areas of your life as well.
10. Get rid of a bad habit.
People who quit an addiction or bad habit often times feel a lot more confident. They realize that what felt impossible wasn’t so, and they feel brave enough to try other things.
After all, they are just now realizing they’ve been holding back for a long time.
Funny thing, but this works. I feel instantly better when I smile, and it helps me be kinder to others as well. Not a bad investment of your time and energy.
If you want to, you can do this while staring into a mirror. Or if you want to try a hack, you can place a pencil between your teeth. That’s going to force you to smile.
12. Be grateful.
I strenuously believe in gratitude, and I believe that you cannot have more unless you are glad with what you have.
When you wake up, rather than checking social media or going through your e-mails, spend a few minutes making a mental list of all the things you’re grateful for.
I know, I know. I put this one on almost every list I make.
Exercise has been one of the most empowering habits I ever developed, and it has made me feel so much better about myself.
It’s not just the fact that you will look better naked, but also the fact that all sorts of feel good chemicals are flowing through your body.
Consistently working out has been the most simple and effective technique that I’ve used to change my body, my internal reality, and increase my sense of self-worth.
As they say, leaders are readers.
By becoming more knowledgeable, you’ll be more confident. You become more competent when it comes to sharing knowledge with others.
You also develop new skills, which in turn make you feel more competent, and feeling like that makes you feel more confident in your abilities.
15. Realize that 24/7 confidence is a myth.
Saving the best for last.
It’s extremely important to realize that no one feels confident 100% of the time, no matter what they try to do.
Being a beginner is often a journey into the center of your fears and insecurities, and this means that you won’t feel as confident as you feel when doing something you’ve mastered over the years.
Also, there are some days when you just won’t feel confident enough to do much, for a variety of reasons, both internal and external.
But by getting rid of this notion that being supremely self-confident is something that you just are all the time allows you to not panic when you don’t feel confident, and in turn gives you the chance to slowly work on building your confidence.
Confidence is not something you are born with. It is not an innate skill. It’s an architectural build. It’s something you work on, brick by brick, day by day.