Self-confidence 101

The world can feel limited with a lack of self-confidence. In this article I’ll share a few things that have helped along the way as reminders to be self-confident. Self-confidence stems 100% from your mindset and mentality and it comes from within you. These helpful tips are great ways to build your self-confidence and put it into play for your life.

1. Stop comparing yourself to others

It’s an endless game that you’ll never win. There will always be someone younger, more successful, smarter, or more wealthy or all of these things combined. Stop trying to measure yourself against other people. Start setting your own personal goals and milestones for success. You’ll be able to create the life you want. Keeping up with the Joneses never really did anyone much good. Living that way make you very insecure and unhappy. 

Basing your worth by comparing yourself to others is a reactionary way to go through life. If you’re out to build self-confidence, try going for what you really want. You don’t have to live based on what your friends or family think you should. It’s not necessary to buy the bigger, fancier version of the car or lawnmower your neighbor just bought. If you want to get in shape at the gym, do it for yourself. Set your own personal goals that excite you. Doing it solely to try and impress others will only get you so far. You’ll be much more confident going after a goal that you set for yourself and follow through on.

2. Have fun

No one likes being around someone who’s boring, serious, and unadventurous. A big part of being confident can be finding enjoyment and creating vibrancy in every situation and interaction. Be able to know that no matter what, things will turn out great. There’s no need to get somber or mopy when stuff goes awry. Remind your mind and attitude they don’t have to always be so rigid and structured. You can crack jokes and laugh things off when they don’t go as planned. Pick yourself up and create a new approach to solving a problem or going after your goals. Having fun and boosting your confidence can happen anytime and anywhere. The best part is that it doesn’t cost you a dime.

3. Disregard

No need to get hung up on drama or allow people to bring you down. This is your life and you get to create it. People get upset or try to put down others for a myriad of reasons. Most of the time, they actually have nothing to do with you. It might be how they were treated as a child. Maybe it’s the fact that you have something they want and they’re envious. They might get some sort of short-term emotional payoff in bringing other people down. 

Boost confidence by tuning out the haters and the negativity. It is what it is – only other people’s selective opinions. If you continually get the same feedback from a lot of people, maybe then there’s something to look at. Most of the time, negative comments about you are projections of other people’s insecurities and they don’t serve you. Acknowledge they were said, not absorb them, and let them go.

4. Practice

One of the best ways to boost self-confidence is to get to work and try it on. Test it out even if you’re not sure how to start. It might feel uncomfortable or unusual at first. That’s ok, and everyone has to start somewhere. Part of any self-improvement process is to let go of old ways of being. This makes space for a new way to be! Change is as hard or as easy as you choose to make it. The sooner you let go of the way you have to be in situations, the faster things will move. This includes being someone who is always insecure. You can make the shift with practice. The sooner you can reinvent yourself and practice being the new, improved, confident version yourself.

5. Positive affirmations

This is a great way to set your subconscious thoughts and give yourself a confidence boost. If you’re not used to doing this kind of work, it can raise the questions. Questions like how will making these affirmations really help me? Or, you might be saying this sounds like it’s too good to be true. I completely get the skepticism. You won’t know if it will work for you until you try it on and give it a shot. It’s a popular and effective technique for a lot of people around the world. Positive Affirmations can be very useful if you practice them. 

Your mind and attitude play a major part in how you regard yourself. They are key in how you come across to others and how confident you are. Positive affirmations are a great way to create a belief in yourself. This applies even if you’re not sure how you’ll get to be that confident person you want to be. It’s a way to get things rolling and build up your confidence. Positive affirmations are also great for other things you want to work on. This could be finding focus or being happier or attracting the types of business opportunities you’re after. Every morning or as often as needed, look into the mirror and make affirmations that excite and inspire you.

6. Ask other people for feedback

Ask them how you come across and what might be missing to be more self-confident. Sometimes we have habits or ways of operating that are so common and normal, we don’t realize them. It’s hard for us to break out of the cycle without awareness. Asking friends for feedback can be a great way to take on an outside perspective. You can also optionally film yourself or record your speech to see how you come across. It might be hard to face yourself being recorded at first and it will get better. The sooner you start, the sooner you’ll begin to realize what might be missing for achieve more confidence. What can be measured and tracked can be improved.

7. You can make it happen

You have everything you need to go after your dreams and goals right here, right now. There are always steps you can take. Belief in yourself can completely change how confident you are. Some people get so worked about about all the things that might go wrong. It might cause them to never even get started at all. They have paralysis from the fear. It’s much more fulfilling to go out and live your dreams. It’s key to face your fears and fail at times. This way of living is much better than to not try at all, always wondering “what if?” 

The path of any successful, confident person, will be marked by failures along the way. At times, I’m sure they also questioned if things would work out. At some moments, despite all their best efforts, their fears came true and they failed. The important thing is that they got up again and figured out a way to keep moving forward. The path to success may not have looked exactly as they had planned and no one can predict the future. Belief in oneself is making the commitment that you have why it takes to figure things out. You can figure it out, even if something goes wrong. You got this.

8. Admit when you’re wrong

Tell people if you’ve made a mistake and take responsibility. There’s no sense in hiding from your failures or going at it alone. It’s a waste of time and energy to hold grudges or be resentful towards others. This is especially true if you are the root cause of a mistake. Some people are not willing to admit when they are wrong. Have you ever taken responsibility for problems you haven’t directly created but impact you? Working through things that you may or may not have caused can result in a boost of self-confidence. No one person can build massive corporations or faster ideas that spread without the help of others. Admitting when you make a mistake and taking responsibility is what will keep things moving. Responsibility is an essential part of any well-oiled project or organization.

9. Hit the gym and watch what you eat

Getting regular exercise can really help boost self-confidence and naturally make you a lot more positive. There are so many benefits to exercise. It absolutely makes sense to work it into your routine, even if you feel like it’s cutting into your time. With some thought, you can figure out a way to make time to get a workout in. This is true for anyone, even people with a busy schedule. Eating right can also dramatically help to raise your level of confidence. You’ll look better, feel better, and have more energy. This also goes for avoiding certain foods. I found for myself, that eating foods heavy with dairy was not working well with my system. Once I cut milk and cheese, I felt much better. It’s important to find a regimen that works for you. 

10. Start saying no

Practice saying no to things and people and start making your own choices. Being the person who says yes to everything can have you being pulled in a million different directions. You’ll end up exhausted without the results you really want in life. Saying no boosts confidence because you are choosing your path based on what you want to create. The alternative is to respond to what simply happens to you in life and which is a reacting mode. This is important if you’re someone who always says yes. Next time you know in your heart something really doesn’t make sense, say no. Don’t agree to something you don’t believe in, you don’t have to. Yry on saying no and stick to it.

11. Tell people what you really think

You’re not doing anyone any favors by trying to be nice all the time. People respect a backbone. If you’re sitting with friends and someone says something offensive, call them out. If you believe you have a better way to get a project done, speak up. Share it with the influencers and stakeholders in a way they can relate to. There’s an art to being direct and honest with people without being rude. It’s possible that someone might misinterpret direct communications at times and they will still often come around later. The point is, it’s exhausting to always have to tiptoe around and walk on eggshells during your conversations. People will respect you more if you speak your mind. Get down to the heart of matters without simply walking around, conducting superficial conversations. 

12. Don’t be afraid to ruffle some feathers

You’re not playing big enough if you don’t have at least some people that disagree with you. Confident people know that you can’t please everyone all the time and it’s not your job to anyways. That doesn’t mean you have to go out of your way to piss people off or cause disagreements. Don’t be driven by people pleasing. Everyone doesn’t have to like you all the time and that’s ok.

Sure, someone might actually get frustrated or taken back by something you say. That’s going to happen occasionally. Maybe they don’t even say it to your face. They might vent it in private to their partner later that evening. Who knows? The important thing is to communicate what’s really going on. You don’t want to be overly delicate all the time when it comes to working through issues with people. It’s one thing to be diplomatic and another thing entirely to be constantly afraid to speak up. You might offend someone at some point if you disagree with something. That’s fine. If someone says soemthing about it, you can challenge them on it.

13. Stand up for what you believe in

Make the commitment and stick with it despite how you feel that day. You might have a slight cold or whatever else might get in your way. Finishing what you started is a great way to boost confidence. Having that sense of accomplishment will carry you. Boost confidence by setting out to do something, act on the plan and creating a result. Being confident and successful is all about being in action. It’s helpful to shut down constant thinking and accelerate always being in motion. This will empower you to move the needle and get to the results you want. This also applies to theories you have about how something might be more effective at work if done a certain way. You get to champion it and if it doesn’t work, you can learn from the experience and figure out what was missing to make it successful the next time around.

14. Stop taking what everyone says so seriously

Part of self-confidence comes from understanding that are your own person and just because someone says something in passing to you at work or while you’re at a dinner party, doesn’t mean you have to listen to them or that it’s true. This also means that if you surround yourself with negative people, you’ll probably start to take on that mentality. The opposite is true for people who are positive and optimistic. It’s human nature to absorb the ideas and approaches of the people around us to a certain extent. Just because someone else has a negative attitude, doesn’t mean you need to take on their negativity. You can choose to be a positive influence on them.

15. Remember to rebound

Don’t let things get you down for too long. Easier said than done, right? You’re capable of being tenacious and with experience, it gets easier and more automatic. It’s common to get hung up when things don’t turn it how you want and even the most confident people will have doubts in life at times. Remember that those situations are temporary and you can pick yourself up and try again. Everyone is dealing with something and you’d be surprised the people around you who pick themselves up and soldier on through tough times. It’s ok to be frustrated at times, or sad and resigned. Just realize that staying with those feelings won’t cause results. Being solutions oriented and taking action is what will move the needle. 

16. Life is too short to not go after what you want

At the end of the day when you’re on your deathbed, you’ll wish you’d taken more risks in life and acted on your dreams and aspirations. You can start today. Confidence can require discipline and practice and trust in yourself and anyone can become more confident at any time if they choose to commit to it.

– Matt Grigsby

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