Boost Your Confidence
Self-Esteem & Confidence
What Is Self-Esteem?
Self-esteem means ‘appreciating your own worth and importance' – and it helps you to cope better with the challenges of life.
- We have a positive attitude
- We value ourselves highly
- We're convinced of our own abilities
- We see ourselves as competent, in control of our own lives and able to do what we want.
In addition, we compare ourselves favourably with others, whereas low self-esteem can mean helplessness, powerlessness and even depression.
What Else Can Low Self-Esteem Lead To?
- Low self-confidence
- Letting other's desires take preference over your own
- Inner criticism, that nagging voice of disapproval inside you, causes you to stumble at every challenge and even relatively small challenges seem impossible
Let building your self-esteem be the first step towards your happiness and a better life! If you have low confidence or low self-esteem you will find it impossible to be the person you could be and your happiness will be limited.
Our own self-esteem has huge implications for our life paths. Our history of self-esteem begins as children, and follows us throughout our lives; it affects all our decisions and, like a garden it needs constant tending.
One example of self-esteem can be seen in setting out upon our careers. For a person to make a non-traditional career choice, for example, a woman becoming a pilot, or to go against family desires, requires someone to have a belief in their ability to make appropriate decisions, even though significant others in their life disagree with them.
Almost everyone can identify when they're on top of the world, enjoying the benefits of high self-esteem. However, high self-esteem can also act as a cushion for those times when life lets us down. Rejections, disappointments and failure are a part of daily life for everyone.
Life isn't always fair; and even our best efforts aren't always successful. But high self-esteem can help us get through life's downturns
What Can High Self-Esteem Achieve?
- It empowers you and protects you against a wide spectrum of self-defeating and socially undesirable behaviours.
- It makes you less likely to engage in destructive and self-destructive behaviour including alcohol and drug abuse, self-harm and violence.
- It helps you to make independent decisions, take risks, pursue new ideas and act on your own initiative.
- It provides you with security, connectedness, uniqueness, assertiveness, competence and spirituality.
- It helps you to be confident of your abilities and gain pleasure from acting on them.
- It helps you to problem-solve with clarity, resolve conflicts, and clearly communicate your thoughts and desires.
- It increases your confidence. If you have confidence you will respect yourself and then you can respect others, improve your relationships and become happier. Remember: this is not a selfish goal as you will contribute more and share yourself with the world and those around you.
Some Possible Steps to Building Self-Esteem & Confidence
Try new things
New experiences can give you confidence by helping you to grow as a person. You don't have to take up skydiving or anything drastic like that. Starting a new hobby or taking a class is more likely to help you to develop lasting skills anyway.
Face your fears
Forget your failures
Learn from them. Avoid making the same mistakes again but don't limit yourself by assuming you failed before so you can't succeed this time. Try again, you're wiser and stronger. Don't be trapped in the past!
Know what you want and ask for it
Learn about being assertive – you deserve your dreams to come true!
Reward yourself when you succeed
No-one else will! Isn't everything easier when you take time to help yourself? Make a list of your successes and focus on the positive.
We often make assumptions about a situation or person which are not true. Your attitude and behaviour can be negatively affected so if you have any doubt or question then ask and don't assume you know why or how.
Don't be defeated!
Try something else. You are not going to be defeated by one failed attempt are you? Doesn't everyone fail before they succeed? All you need is a different approach.
Work on your conversational skills
Improving your conversational skills can help you to feel more comfortable and confident in any social situation which will lead to larger confidence overall. If you practice maintaining eye contact and being a good listener, you will also give off a more confident aura and you can enjoy the benefits of being treated as a confident person.
As with anything you want to achieve, building confidence will be easier if you set specific goals. Whether you want to be confident enough to ask somebody out on a date or be more confident in your existing relationships, you can then create an action plan for achieving this goal.
When you become involved with an organisation or improver classes, the new experiences, improved skills and chances for personal development can help improve confidence. Think about volunteering your time at a worthwhile organisation.
Use positive imagery and self-talk
The road to self-confidence is primarily a mental exercise. Visualising yourself as a confident person is one way to create a confident mentality. Positive affirmations are another way of building self-confidence. Tell yourself that you are a confident person and don't give negative thoughts room to grow.
Seek professional help
Depression and other illnesses can destroy your self-confidence, and simply thinking positive thoughts or attending a motivational talk aren't enough to feel better.
But motivational speakers make their living from helping people make the most of their lives, which often involves helping their listeners to build confidence. You can buy DVD's and CD's of motivational performances. Numerous self-help books are also available that can lead you to helpful strategies for building self-confidence. Life coaches provide people with one-to-one help in reaching their potential. Counselling can also help you to work through more deep-seated issues getting in the way of feeling confident.
Take small steps
Going along with the idea of setting goals, if you're not feeling confident, you will be much more likely to achieve your desired level of confidence by taking small steps. Tell yourself that you will smile and shake hands with everyone you meet today or promise that you will offer your opinion on an issue that matters to you. This is much more likely to lead to success and start you on the path to confidence than jumping straight to a more daunting task.
Practice a confident attitude
"Fake it ‘til you make it”. The truth is that you can gain confidence by acting like a confident person. Nobody needs to know that you're cringing underneath your confident façade. Eventually you'll no longer need to pretend. The success you experience from acting confident and the confident habits you've developed will lead to true confidence.
Look for confident role models
Whether you turn to co-workers, friends, family members or celebrities for inspiration, finding confident role models can help you become more confident yourself. It's best if you have real-life contact with the person you're looking to emulate, but you can still get an idea of a celebrity's personality and confidence-building strategies through interviews and books.
Be happy with yourself
Having an essentially positive attitude towards yourself is key to gaining confidence. You must be happy with the person you are, from your personality to your appearance, before you can truly be confident.
Gaining confidence requires hard work and dedication but it doesn't have to be impossible if you take it one step at a time.
Finally Be Kind To Yourself!
Don't ever beat yourself up for faltering or taking a step backwards. Brush your shoulders down, take a deep breath and believe in yourself. You'll get there in the end and it will be worth it. Remember: You can do anything you put your mind to!