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9 Exercises You Should Practice Every Day To Boost Your Confidence

9 Exercises You Should Practice Every Day To Boost Your Confidence

Self-confidence is a very powerful tool which can help us a lot in life. It helps us enjoy every moment we live in a better way and live our life to the fullest. However, many of us lack this spirit, for which we have to remain far from realizing our potential. But you don’t need to worry even if you haven’t got it yet. Self-confidence can not be developed overnight but you need continuous application and persistent preparation on your part. If you do small things, one at a time on a regular basis, you’ll surely get there.

Here are the 10 exercises you should practice every day to boost your confidence and uncover the world, full of potential for you.

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1. Have a positive outlook towards life.

Always take a positive outlook towards life, finding something pleasant and in even the worst situations. Try to be happy with what you have, what you can do and where you stand today. You need not limit yourself to certain things forever but being pleased with your achievements until now will help you be a lot more confident. One of the most common reasons people lack confidence is that they feel they do not have enough and they can do nothing about what they want or need. You should build positive approach towards life and believe you can get things done, if you put your maximum efforts. This will surely help boost your confidence.

2. Groom yourself properly.

Groom yourself properly, take care of your personal hygiene and dress yourself appropriately. Feel happy looking at yourself in the mirror. If you can feel happy about the way you look, you avoid all sorts of self-conscious thoughts about you not looking good and others not fancying you. Organizing yourself in the best way you can, will not only help you gain others’ appreciation but also feel good about yourself and it’s the most important factor to build up your self-confidence.

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3. Be prepared and at your best.

A lot of times we are not able to execute things in the best manner, often on grand stages and huge occasions, largely due to the lack of preparation. This can have far-reaching consequences. On one hand, we won’t be able to perform at our best level at the time. Furthermore, on the long run, we may begin to doubt ourselves and get to believe that we can never do things in a better way. This can derail our future endeavors too, trapping us in a vicious circle. But we can avoid this by preparing for the occasion, even if it’s a trivial one and giving our best for it. Gradually, one step after another, we’ll feel we can excel too and this will gradually boost our confidence a lot.

4. Consume healthy and balanced diet.

You may be wondering what sort of role food can have to boost your confidence. But believe me, we’re undermining the role of balanced diet in building self-confidence and life as a whole too. A healthy and balanced diet keeps us fit and the chances of catching most ailments are easily off. Being in the best possible shape and good health instills in us the feel good factor and we’re ready for most of the challenges. One has the zeal and energy to take part in happenings going round the corner, in a highly enthusiastic and passionate way. This will work a long way to make you believe in yourself and feel confident across all situations. 5. Inch a step closer to your dream.

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All of us have our own dreams. Some of us want to be a successful writer, some to become a great musician one day and some to become a successful footballer one day. We cherish those dreams and live by them and they add a great meaning to our lives. We should try to inch a step closer to fulfilling our dream day after day, even if the step seems of little worth, looking at the big picture. This will help us enjoy our life, feel good about ourselves and we develop the feeling that life is beautiful, after all. And when you feel good about yourself, you’re confident about yourself as well.

6. Perform physical exercises.

Perform physical exercises every day in whatever way you find appropriate. This can range from jogging and working out in the gym to taking part in competitive sports. By performing these physical exercises, you will get yourself into great shape and become a fit individual. While doing the exercises, you can also make new friends along the way and develop reinvigorated spirits. Physical efforts, whether you’re jogging or working in the garden, can release endorphins and improve your mood and confidence overall.

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7. Stop negative and worrying thoughts.

Stop worrying and developing negative thoughts, constantly worrying about the circumstances and feeling worthless. If you can change things for better, just do it, whatever way you can. And, if you can do nothing about it, why all those constant worries and helplessness? Let go of things. If you couldn’t work it out this time, try your luck next time around or on some other thing. Negative thoughts are highly detrimental to person’s development and well-being. Avoiding negative thoughts and cultivating positive thoughts on everyday basis, can lead you a long way to being much confident about yourself.

8. Enjoy the moment you’re living in.

It might be hard for many of us but the best way to build the self-confidence and succeed in life as well is to focus completely on the moment one is living in. Allowing yourself to think about bad times or something unpleasant that happened during the day will only trigger negative thoughts in us and is highly detrimental to our self-confidence. We will feel bad about ourselves and cannot perform at our best level too on the thing we’re currently working on. So live in the moment, cherish it, try to do your best and enjoy it. This way, you’ll make the best of every occasion and feel a lot better about yourself and the surroundings you’re living in. So no turning your mind to some depressing thoughts next time around when you’re at work.

9. Remember who short and precious life is.

Remember every day that life is very short and you may never have a second chance. So make the best out of the first chances you get. Always act with self-belief and always believe that you can succeed, even when it seems a distant possibility. Work every day, even in a small way, to realize your dreams and enjoy every moment you live. Listen to your heart and go all out to take it where it really wants to go. Never undermine the power of self-confidence. You are what you feel and act. Do the things you enjoy and love to do — as long as they don’t interfere with anyone else’s ability to do the same!

Featured photo credit: selfconfidence looks good in any colour via deviantart.com

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Nabin Paudyal

Co-Founder, Siplikan Media Group

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Last Updated on April 8, 2020

How to Calm Down When You’re Stressed and Anxious

How to Calm Down When You’re Stressed and Anxious

Overwhelmed with work, family responsibilities, financial challenges and health issues are common culprits which catalyze stress and anxiety symptoms that show up differently in each and every one of us.

Whilst many of us are becoming much better at identifying what can trigger us to feel these, we’re not always that great at recognizing our individual thresholds; we don’t know exactly how to calm down when the mental, emotional storms erupt.

We can almost see you eye-rolling upon hearing commonly recommended stress antidotes such as taking a bath, lighting candles or going for a walk. Let’s face it. These simply aren’t practical things you can do when you’re on a red-eye flight at 5:30am to run a full day of training interstate and then fly back the same evening not to mention juggling a young family.

You want to know your triggers, predict the impact of them and have your own suite of tools up your sleeve to calm down that impact for the long-term.

Doing a little ground work to gain a strong self-awareness of your likely reactions puts you smack bang in the pilot seat to develop a robust mental and emotional toolkit that will work wonders for you.

A few simple but well-practiced techniques may be all you need to simmer down the cyclonic intensity of emotions, and disparaging thoughts pecking away at your self-esteem and confidence. However, it’s important you do this self-reflective groundwork first to gain maximum impact for long-term effect.

1. Strengthen Familiarity with What Triggers You

When you have arguments with your loved one, do you stop and look to see if there are certain things you fight about? Are there certain behaviors they display that drive you bananas?

Take your focus off them and ask yourself: “What is my usual response?”

Perhaps you feel the anger welling up inside your chest and you then spurt out that you’ve told him or her ten times before to not leave their underwear lying across the bedroom floor.

Think a little deeper. Ask yourself what values, standards and expectations you have that are not being met here. You’ll likely be attached to certain ways you believe things should play out. Are there assumptions and expectations as to how you believe people should conduct themselves and principles about how you feel you should be treated?

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Having a strong attachment to these for yourself is one thing. Expecting others to have the same attachment is often what can make the hot water start simmering.

It is often when people behave in ways inconsistent with our belief systems and events unfold in discord with what we expect and are prepared for that we feel the most stress and anxiety.

Make a list of the common circumstances in different areas of your life that cause you to become anxious and stressed. Against each of these, describe your stress response:

What happens? What do you feel?

Now think about the values, principles and expectations you have attached to these. You’ll see you have a few options:

  • Change my values and expectations
  • Try to change other’s values and expectations
  • Recognize and be in allowance of others having different values, standards and expectations

Reviewing how you react when you’re stressed and anxious, and identifying which of these three options above is going to best serve you, can greatly increase your ability to feel and be in control of calming your reaction.

You move closer to being able to choose how you want to respond as opposed to feeling helpless and the world is spiralling out of control.

2. Have Coping Statements on Hand

When you have a washing machine of chaotic thoughts churning in your mind, trying to implant thoughts that are the complete opposite of what you’re thinking and feeling can be pretty hard.

Not being able to do it can also add another layer of us feeling disappointment in ourselves. We feel we’re failing.

Having coping statements that you can literally latch on to to help you calm down in those stressful and anxious moments, can be particularly helpful.

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Look at creating palm cards and just have three to five of these you can have in your pocket or in your purse. Here are 6 examples:

  • Even though I am feeling this right now, I am going to be alright
  • What I am feeling right now is uncomfortable. I won’t feel this way forever. Soon the intensity of what I am feeling will pass.
  • I’ve survived these feelings before. I can do it again.
  • I feel this way because of my past experiences but right now, I am actually safe.
  • It’s ok for me to feel this way. My body and brain are trying to protect me but I am actually safe right now.
  • Ah, here you are again, anxiety. Thanks for showing up to protect me, but I don’t need you right now.

Choose words and dialogue that feel true and accurate for you. Read the statements out to yourself and test how fitting they are for you. What feels more assuring, calming and right for you?

Make these statements your own. The aim is of these statements is to de-escalate the intensity of what you feel when you’re anxious and stressed.

Remember, you want to refrain from having blunt statements which feel or sound like they’re self-reprimanding because they won’t be pacifying in a positive way.

If you are unsure as to how to come up with statements that fit for you, look to work with a psychologist or licensed therapist to give you a strong start.

3. Identify and Develop Physical Anchors

You actually have within you resources to provide some of the most effective ways to calm yourself down in heightened moments you feel stressed and anxious. Renowned clinical psychologist Dr. Peter Levine and expert in treating stress and trauma, teaches us how techniques which do this, such as Somatic Experiencing®[1] can significantly help us calm down.

By learning to be fully present and applying touch to certain areas of your body (e.g. forehead and heart space), you increase your capacity to self-regulate. You also learn how to attend to and release your unique symptoms that your body has been containing in a way you have not been able to before.

Here’s one technique example:

  1. Get in a comfortable position
  2. Have your eyes open or closed, whatever feels most comfortable for you
  3. Now place one hand on your forehead, palm side flat against the skin
  4. Place the other hand, palm down across your heart space above your sternum… the flat of your chest area.
  5. Gently turn your attention to what you feel physically in the area between your two hands. Observe and just take notice of what you physically feel. Is your chest pounding? How strong are its beat and the rhythm? Do you notice any other sensations anywhere else between your two hands?
  6. Don’t try to push or resist what you’re feeling. Try to just sit with it and remain this way with your hands in place until you feel a shift, a physical one. It might take a little longer, so try to be patient.

You might feel a change in energy flow, a change in temperature or different, less intense sensations. Just keep your hands in place until you feel some kind of shift, even if gradual.

It might take you even 5 to 10 minutes but, riding this wave will help you to process what discomfort your body is containing. It will greatly help to release it so you gradually become calmer.

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Purely cognitive exercises can be tough at the outset. Learning somatic experience techniques is particularly helpful because you’re engaging in exercises where you physically can feel the difference. Feeling the changes helps you increase confidence you can control and reduce the discomfort you’re feeling. You’ll be motivated to keep practicing and improving this skill you can take anywhere, anytime.

4. Move and Get Physical

If you’re not one to exercise, you’re robbing yourself of some very easy ways which help you calm down and reduce stress and anxiety responses. Many neuro chemical changes take place when you engage in exercise.

At certain levels of physical exertion, your brain’s pituitary gland releases neurotransmitter endorphins. When they bind with certain opiate receptors in your brain, signals are transmuted throughout your nervous system to reduce feelings of pain and trigger feelings of euphoria. You might have heard the term ‘runner’s high’.

For the last 20 years, University of Missouri-Columbia’s Professor Richard Cox has conducted research showing that high intensity interval training (HIIT) is more effective at reducing anxiety and stress levels than other forms of aerobic exercise.[2] However, if you would rather slay dragons than turn up an F45 class, it’s essential you still find something that will physically shift you and alter your current mental and emotional state of mind, even just a fraction to start with. It’s 100% ok if this is not your cup of tea.

So in a day full of back of back-to-back meetings, what can you do?

If you’re sitting, stand. Change your posture and open your body up. Have a suite of discrete stretches you can do regularly as you deepen and engage in diaphragmatic breathing.

If you’re looking down at your desk at work and feeling increasingly stressed, look up and change what you’re looking at. Give yourself more than a few moments to decompress.

The main thing is to change your disposition from the one you’re in when you are experiencing anxiety and stress symptoms. You’re shaking it up to calm it down.

5. Transform Your Unhelpful Inner Dialogue and Its Energy

Learning cognitive restructuring techniques can truly work wonders in helping you recognize and re-frame unhelpful dialogue and negative critical thinking patterns. This involves a little preparation being transparent with yourself about what exaggerated perspectives you might ascribe to what’s happening when you’re feeling stressed and anxious.

When you open your email inbox and see a flood of requests which require more time and energy you have for that day, dread starts to settle in and the following comes to mind: “This is impossible. How can they expect me to be able to do all this? It’s completely unreasonable!”

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Instantly, many other thoughts that reinforce this line of thinking as well as the emotional energy of your first conscious thought start unravelling. A 4-step process you can engage to calm the eruption is:

  1. Catch and notice that first thought you had. What was it? What did you think and/or say to yourself?
  2. Recognize that what you’re feeling and be in allowance of the initial intensity of whatever those emotions are.
  3. Breath deliberately a little more deeply and slowly for a few seconds.
  4. State to yourself: “Right now (in this moment) I’m feeling overwhelmed by this, however maybe I can look at what I can make good progress and headway with as a start from here on.”

Notice the language in step 4 is tentative, supportive, soft and not resistant nor defiant of what your original thought was. You accept your original thought, but gradually you become stronger at pivoting it.[3] You’re expanding your growth mindset language.

It’s definitely worth working with a coach or trained therapist to learn how to tailor re-framing statements which can truly help you calm down.

Final Thoughts

We know, in our minds what we should do. When we’re in the thick of experiencing mental and emotional turmoil, it’s actually harder to implement what we know. In those moments, you’re unlikely to have capacity to think about what you need to do, let alone do it effectively to help you feel calmer.

The key is to practice so that when the storm is brewing, your toolkit and supplies are in easy access. You already know your safety drill well.

Knowing you have strategies and prepared processes up your sleeves helps you not only become better at calming yourself in amongst currently stressful situations. You have more confidence now to face more anxiety-provoking stressors because you have developed the resources to handle it.

How you invest time and energy into getting to know your triggers and thresholds will influence how effective these strategies will work for you. We’re not denying relaxing baths or regular massages are helpful, however these band-aid-like solutions don’t really confront the root causes.

If you truly want to turn your experience of your stress and anxiety symptoms around, dig deeper, do the groundwork and that which rattled your cage will quickly become a thing of the past.

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Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

Reference

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