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11 Easy Ways To Boost Your Confidence

11 Easy Ways To Boost Your Confidence

When I was a manager, I was never very good at speaking at meetings. In fact, I hated them! Now, thinking back to that period in my life, I think it was mainly a lack of confidence in my skills and abilities.

If I had to do it all over again, this is what I would concentrate on. If you can resonate with all this, here are 11 ways you can boost your confidence.

1. Your lack of confidence is not so obvious.

You probably think that everyone in the room is looking at how you behave, speak and move. The truth is that people are all too often, absorbed in their own thoughts.

They are thinking about their next move, future plans and what they are going to have for dinner! Keeping this in mind helps you to become less intimidated by the people around you.

2. Be your hero for a day.

Who is your hero? You can bet your bottom dollar that they are full of self assurance and confidence. It probably oozes out of every pore in the way they dress, speak and walk! The secret is to pretend to be your hero and ask yourself how she or he would deal with this awful problem which is nagging you.

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Stepping outside that vicious circle where you and the ‘problem’ spin around out of control is really helpful. You can imagine a different, happier ending when you pretend to be your hero.

3. Take a philosophical approach.

The break up was unpleasant and has left you feeling un-confident. Take a philosophical approach where you think this has been a useful experience. You learned that this person was not for you, you will recognize the warning signs the next time and the right person is waiting in the wings.

It just takes time but why beat yourself up for something which was not entirely your fault? You cannot win every game in the championship. Just think that you are still on a winning streak because you have a lot going for you.

4. Build your support team.

“I’ll get by with a little help from my friends.” – The Beatles

Choosing supportive friends will be essential to help you boost your confidence. These are the precious friends and family members who are always there to tell you that you can do it when faced with a problem, challenge or minor disaster.

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Avoid toxic friends who are likely to point out the buts and ifs, rather than tell you to go for it. The classic one is where they say that there will be stiff competition for that dream job. Your support team will be rooting for you and egging you on. That makes all the difference.

5. Take a humorous approach.

“Laugh, and the whole world laughs with you.” – Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Most speakers tell a joke or maybe laugh a little at themselves. Why do they do this? Laughter produces those endorphins which makes everybody in the audience feel better and it also relaxes them. A lot of the tension goes.

The audience warms to the speaker and are generally much less critical. If you want to feel more confident, just watch one of the funny videos here. You will immediately feel better. I love the one with Mayson Zayid whose talk is entitled ‘I got 99 problems … palsy is just one.’

6. Watch your body language.

Do you walk or slouch? Is your handshake firm? Making eye contact is vital when you are networking or speaking at a meeting. There is no doubt that body language sends a powerful message. Why not take advantage of it and convince others and, more importantly yourself, that you are confident and you can meet all the challenges with ease?

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Watch Amy Cuddy on how important body language is when we want to feel confident.

7. Build a Pinterest board.

What does your future look like and how do you want your life to be? One of the best ways is to build a vision board. You can have a notice board in your kitchen with favorite quotes and pictures that inspire you. This is difficult to organize and you may not have the space you need.

Why not build a Pinterest board? Repin the images and the quotes that build your confidence and also that fit in with your goals. You get a vision of your future and this will help to build your confidence. Taking a few minutes a day to do this is much more fruitful than trying to keep up with all your Facebook ‘friends’.

8. Self-confidence is about you.

 “Self-confidence is the experience of being competent to cope with the basic challenges of life and being worthy of happiness.”- Nathaniel Branden

Think of it like this. Your confidence is like the motor that drives you. If that is defective in some way, then you will never even get into top gear. You are held back because of the fear of failing. But if you have a superb engine, then you are going to race ahead and achieve success. That is real confidence.

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Watch out for the triggers that can affect your confidence level. You may be late for work and rushed into a meeting, in which your performance is dismal. Plan ahead so that these triggers do not get a chance to catch up on you.

9. Cut down on the negativity.

Everybody gets overwhelmed at times by the negative self-talk that we inflict on ourselves. There are about 80,000 thoughts that flash through the brain every day. Let us think of some practical examples. We may be assaulted by worries, doubts and problems. They crowd in on us.

But a good tactic is always to ask yourself if it is really true. Very often, the answer is that is based on a negative scenario which is like a contagious disease, infecting every train of thought. The secret is to cultivate a state of mindfulness and choose to take another road at the negative intersection. This is a great chance to build new, positive beliefs and stories about ourselves. “I have achieved so much,” needs to be your mantra.

10. Give yourself a daily mini confidence boost.

Listen to your favorite music or wear those clothes that make you look and feel really great. Read some inspiring poem or quote. Write it on a post it and place it on your computer at work. These little boosts of confidence can set the tone for a much more positive day.Try them out.

11. Teach others and benefit yourself.

When you set the example for your loved ones and colleagues by teaching them to be more confident, you will be surprised at your own results. Yes, teaching it by complimenting and encouraging people around you will pay you handsome dividends. Walk the talk and you find that your own confidence levels will soar as a result.

Featured photo credit: Mona Lisa Eyes/Emilio Labrador via flickr.com

More by this author

Robert Locke

Author of Ziger the Tiger Stories, a health enthusiast specializing in relationships, life improvement and mental health.

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

For the original article by Celestine: 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

“We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

“It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye

Have you ever experienced moments when things just don’t go your way? For example, losing your keys, accidentally spilling your drink, waking up late, missing your buses/trains, forgetting to bring your things, and so on?

You’re not alone. All of us, myself included, experience times when things don’t go as we expect.

Here is my guide on how to deal with daily setbacks.

1. Take a step back and evaluate

When something bad happens, take a step back and evaluate the situation. Some questions to ask yourself:

  1. What is the problem?
  2. Are you the only person facing this problem in the world today?
  3. How does this problem look like at an individual level? A national level? On a global scale?
  4. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to you as a result of this?
  5. How is it going to impact your life in the next 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?

Doing this exercise is not to undermine the problem or disclaiming responsibility, but to consider different perspectives, so you can adopt the best approach for it. Most problems we encounter daily may seem like huge issues when they crop up, but most, if not all, don’t have much impact in our life beyond that day.

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2. Vent if you have to, but don’t linger on the problem

If you feel very frustrated and need to let off some steam, go ahead and do that. Talk to a friend, complain, crib about it, or scream at the top of your lungs if it makes you happy.

At the same time, don’t get caught up with venting. While venting may temporarily relieve yourself, it’s not going to solve the problem ultimately. You don’t want to be an energy vampire.

Vent if there’s a need to, but do it for 15 to 20 minutes. Then move on.

3. Realize there are others out there facing this too

Even though the situation may be frustrating, you’re not alone. Remember there are almost 7 billion people in the world today, and chances are that other people have faced the same thing before too. Knowing it’s not just you helps you to get out of a self-victimizing mindset.

4. Process your thoughts/emotions

Process your thoughts/emotions with any of the four methods:

  1. Journal. Write your unhappiness in a private diary or in your blog. It doesn’t have to be formal at all – it can be a brain dump on rough paper or new word document. Delete after you are done.
  2. Audio taping. Record yourself as you talk out what’s on your mind. Tools include tape recorder, your PC (Audacity is a freeware for recording/editing audio) and your mobile (most mobiles today have audio recording functions). You can even use your voice mail for this. Just talking helps you to gain awareness of your emotions. After recording, play back and listen to what you said. You might find it quite revealing.
  3. Meditation. At its simplest form, meditation is just sitting/lying still and observing your reality as it is – including your thoughts and emotions. Some think that it involves some complex mambo-jumbo, but it doesn’t.
  4. Talking to someone. Talking about it with someone helps you work through the issue. It also gets you an alternate viewpoint and consider it from a different angle.

5. Acknowledge your thoughts

Don’t resist your thoughts, but acknowledge them. This includes both positive and negative thoughts.

By acknowledging, I mean recognizing these thoughts exist. So if say, you have a thought that says, “Wow, I’m so stupid!”, acknowledge that. If you have a thought that says, “I can’t believe this is happening to me again”, acknowledge that as well.

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Know that acknowledging the thoughts doesn’t mean you agree with them. It’s simply recognizing the existence of said thoughts so that you can stop resisting yourself and focus on the situation on hand.

6. Give yourself a break

If you’re very stressed out by the situation, and the problem is not time sensitive, then give yourself a break. Take a walk, listen to some music, watch a movie, or get some sleep. When you’re done, you should feel a lot more revitalized to deal with the situation.

7. Uncover what you’re really upset about

A lot of times, the anger we feel isn’t about the world. You may start off feeling angry at someone or something, but at the depth of it, it’s anger toward yourself.

Uncover the root of your anger. I have written a five part anger management series on how to permanently overcome anger.

After that, ask yourself: How can you improve the situation? Go to Step #9, where you define your actionable steps. Our anger comes from not having control on the situation. Sitting there and feeling infuriated is not going to change the situation. The more action we take, the more we will regain control over the situation, the better we will feel.

8. See this as an obstacle to be overcome

As Helen Keller once said,

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

Whatever you’re facing right now, see it as an obstacle to be overcome. In every worthy endeavor, there’ll always be countless obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, and those who don’t. If you’re able to push through and overcome them, you’ll emerge a stronger person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

9. Analyze the situation – Focus on actionable steps

In every setback, there are going to be things that can’t be reversed since they have already occurred. You want to focus on things that can still be changed (salvageable) vs. things that have already happened and can’t be changed. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it. Rather than cry over spilt milk, work through your situation:

  1. What’s the situation?
  2. What’s stressing you about this situation?
  3. What are the next steps that’ll help you resolve them?
  4. Take action on your next steps!

After you have identified your next steps, act on them. The key here is to focus on the actionable steps, not the inactionable steps. It’s about regaining control over the situation through direct action.

10. Identify how it occurred (so it won’t occur again next time)

A lot of times we react to our problems. The problem occurs, and we try to make the best out of what has happened within the context. While developing a healthy coping mechanism is important (which is what the other helping points are on), it’s also equally important, if not more, to understand how the problem arose. This way, you can work on preventing it from taking place next time, vs. dealing reactively with it.

Most of us probably think the problem is outside of our control, but reality is most of the times it’s fully preventable. It’s just a matter of how much responsibility you take over the problem.

For example, for someone who can’t get a cab for work in the morning, he/she may see the problem as a lack of cabs in the country, or bad luck. However, if you trace to the root of the problem, it’s probably more to do with (a) Having unrealistic expectations of the length of time to get a cab. He/she should budget more time for waiting for a cab next time. (b) Oversleeping, because he/she was too tired from working late the previous day. He/she should allocate enough time for rest next time. He/she should also pick up better time management skills, so as to finish work in lesser time.

11. Realize the situation can be a lot worse

No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse. A plus point vs. negative point analysis will help you realize that.

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12. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it

No matter how bad your situation may seem, do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it. Life is too beautiful to worry so much over daily issues. Take a step back (#1), give yourself a break if you need to (#6), and do what you can within your means (#9). Everything else will unfold accordingly. Worrying too much about the outcome isn’t going to change things or make your life any better.

13. Pick out the learning points from the encounter

There’s something to learn from every encounter. What have you learned from this situation? What lessons have you taken away?

After you identify your learning points, think about how you’re going to apply them moving forward. With this, you’ve clearly gained something from this encounter. You’ve walked away a stronger, wiser, better person, with more life lessons to draw from in the future.

Get the manifesto version of this article: [Manifesto] What To Do When Things Don’t Go Your Way

Featured photo credit: Alice Donovan Rouse via unsplash.com

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