“With confidence, you have won before you have started.”
Confidence. It’s the one thing we all want, yet the one thing we all struggle with from time to time. These seven simple strategies will help you build your confidence from the inside out. Let’s look at Joe. He has been through some tough times in his life, from the recent death of his mother, to his child having a major medical issue. Like many of us, Joe values his family. His strict travel schedule, un-prioritized lifestyle, and desire for success has kept him from spending quality time with his family. While Joe thought what he was doing was the definition of success, he is now overwhelmed with regret, shame, failure, and is struggling to get through these difficult times. While many of us share similar stories as Joe, it’s important to reflect, renew, and release what no longer serves us by integrating these seven strategies to increase our self-confidence.
While Joe could blame himself for not being there when his family needed him most, it’s important to remember that all of us get caught up in life and forget the most important thing. The things that we value the most. Joe, like many of us, needs to look within to heal the hurt, pain, and regret he’s suppressing from having to deal with major life issues like the death of his mother. Instead of blaming himself Joe needs to forgive himself for not recognizing that his pattern of behavior was hurting not only his family, but more importantly himself. When we don’t take care of ourselves, we can’t take care of others.
While all of us want control over one aspect of our life or another, it’s important to recognize that when we release the control that we have, the universe gives us what we want. While Joe could control his travel schedule, work agenda, and other things, he could not control the fact that his child was born with a medical issue or that it was his mother’s time to go. Most of the time, we try to control the things we can’t control, and in doing so get angry, frustrated, and upset when what we expect a certain result and in return get something else. By engaging in explosive arguments, you refuse to take responsibility for yourself. Ask yourself, “What is it costing me?” If the answer is your dreams, identity, or dignity, the cost is too high.
Have you ever heard the saying, “Give credit where credit is due?” Just take a second and look back on your life and realize how far you’ve come, how many times you’ve failed and picked yourself up, how many successes you’ve had and give yourself credit. For the small successes make a huge difference in the way we look at and treat ourselves.
Change revolves around learning and all learning creates change. Your brain and body are a sophisticated communication system. Your thoughts create inner standards or rules which were developed from the time you were a child. These standards and rules dominate your pattern of previous and continued behavior throughout life. While it’s critical to understand your history, it’s more important to re-learn these patterns of behavior to maximize your personal potential while governing your choices and actions with precision. Joe may have made mistakes in the past that hurt the relationships he had with those closest to him, but by understanding his pattern of behavior he will be able to move forward and progress at a steady pace.
All too often we claim we are busy and although we might be, the problem is that we are not being productive. Productivity increases the efficiency of an organization. This allows you to get more done in less time. Productivity is much more important than revenues and profits, because profits only reflect the end result whereas productivity reflects the increased efficiency as well as effectiveness of you overall. Moreover, it enables you to find out your strengths and weaknesses. It also lets you easily identify threats as well as opportunities that prevail in the market as a result of competition and changes in the business environment as a whole.
Communicate with emotional integrity. Empathetic listening is the basis for the integrity of communication that facilitates rapport and understanding. There is nothing people love more than talking about themselves. In any important relationship, mis-communications and mistakes are very likely to happen between people. What is important is how we work these problems out. Instead of having problems end up damaging relationships and trust, these can become opportunities to learn and grow from each other. The most important skill we have is not what we say, but how well we listen.
Too many times we focus our skills and abilities on twenty different things, spreading our plate thin, and our time even thinner. And, it is these exact things we complain are not fulfilling our basic needs. By helping people for free, it is pulling you away from what you are naturally called to do. While people will always want and need your help, value comes with a price tag. E-mail, commenting on blogs, social media, etc., it all interrupts and distracts you from more important things that truly benefit both the business and the bottom line. Charge what you are worth, and don’t apologize.
While determining what direction to take in life, many of us make the same mistake. We try to apply the principles of our parents, spouses, co-workers, etc., to our own individual journey. Then, we’re surprised when we’re miserable. The first thing to do when trying to connect to your life’s purpose is to set aside the need to please others or live up to anyone else’s expectations. Be completely honest about what matters most to you. Define your core values, respect, and be yourself. This and this alone will automatically increase your self-confidence.
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