Confidence isn’t always as perfect and as easy as you would expect. It doesn’t come naturally to everyone. Whether confidence is something you’ve struggled with your whole life, your self-esteem will always be something that you naturally struggle with as a person. Even someone you perceive as flawless and perfect have days where they struggle with their own insecurities and flaws. There isn’t a clear and concrete step-by-step answer as to how you can gain confidence. However, there are ways you can build om getting more confident, which would be listed in the following:
1. Know who you are and what you want
In order to build your confidence, you should be able to figure out who you are and what you want first. You can’t be confident if you aren’t secure in your likes and dislikes in all aspects whether it be your career choice, your values, your morals and your beliefs. It’s a significant step to be able to be convicted in who you are so that even if you meet a variety of different people along the way, you will never lose your true self. It’s really easy to conform to other people’s personalities and values in trying to fit in with the rest of the world. In the road to confidence, being someone of integrity and conviction is the key to a higher self-esteem. Once you’re sure in who you are, you gain a certain kind of confidence with staying true to who you are, despite what the world throws at you.
2. Avoid negativity in your life
Nothing breaks confidence faster than negativity and pessimism in your life, whether that’s in the form of your thoughts, your habits or the people that surround you. In order to build your confidence, you have to guard these important aspects of your life. Nothing good ever comes out of a life filled with negativity and you have a choice as to whether you’re going to live a life of negativity, or positivity. Great confidence is gained with a life where you are filled with positivity, after all.
The power of our thoughts
There’s something so powerful about the kind of mindset we choose to have and our thoughts can easily make or break our self-esteem immediately. I know that it’s the hardest struggle to turn your negative thoughts into positive ones, especially when you feel overwhelmed by them. But at some point, you have to realize that not all your thoughts are true. In fact, your mind can be lying to you.
The negative thoughts that your mind is feeding you is just coming from a place of fear and doubt. Thoughts such as “I’m not wise enough” or “I’m going to embarrass myself in that meeting” isn’t always accurate- they’re just thoughts based on fear, or based on a past experience that hurt you.
When you choose to dwell on a negative thought, it’s going to break your confidence even more. On the other hand, choosing to focus on positive thoughts have the power to lift you up and have faith in yourself. The more that you focus on those negative thoughts, the stronger it’s going to get. The only reason that you’re believing those thoughts is because that’s what you’re choosing to focus on. However, you can try reducing that focus by distracting your thoughts with another activity or opening up to a friend,
Another good thing when negative thoughts are overwhelming you is trying to counter your thoughts with positive self-affirmations or writing down what you feel on a journal. When you write your thoughts, it can help you to see that your thoughts can be filled some unrealistic fears.
The power of our habits
Like our thoughts, our habits can also have a massive impact on our confidence. If we choose to have the wrong set of habits, this could drain us instead of motivating us and lifting us up. For instance, an example of unhealthy habits are choosing to sleep all morning, or drinking out every night. These are bad habits because these are decisions you can choose not to do, but you do them anyway.
When we have bad habits, it conditions our minds to live a life of complacency. However, when we have the right set of habits, it gives us that push we need to be better each day and this is what gives us the confidence we need in our day to day lives. When we have healthy habits, it leads to the right kind of mindset which leads to being secure in your self-worth and your capabilities. Our habits pre-determine our mindsets that we have for the day and with healthy habits, this can have the power to transform your life effectively without realizing it.
The power of our peers
It may not seem obvious, but the people that we choose to surround ourselves with have so much impact in how we view ourselves. This is similar to guarding your thoughts, except in this aspect, you’re guarding the people you choose to surround yourself with. In both relationships and friendships, it’s significant to surround yourself with people that make you better and inspire you to see the beauty within yourself.
It’s not the same for everyone. It’s your own preference whether choosing someone with the same values as you motivates you to do better, or it’s choosing someone that’s the complete opposite of you to take you out of your comfort zone. For some, it’s choosing someone with the same morals and values as you so that you have someone to keep you grounded and give you that empowerment through your shared common ground. In the end, choosing the right kind of people and choosing positive people is a healthy decision because in order to build your confidence, you would also need a support system- the right kind.
3. Get out of your comfort zone
Do more things that scare you. This really helps in building your confidence, despite being filled with fear, because it gives you a sense of accomplishment afterwards. Once you conquer your fear, you’re filled with the belief that you can conquer anything- even your own doubts and insecurities about yourself.
So ride that roller coaster, travel to another country or make a new friend. Life isn’t made to be lived in just one place. Sometimes, confidence isn’t acquired through convenience and efficiency. Sometimes, confidence is acquired through the messy parts of life, through finding yourself in the most uncomfortable of places because it’s in those moments you find out what exactly you’re capable of.
4. Do the things you love
Nothing empowers you more than doing the things that make you happy, whether that’s going out with friends or watching your favorite movie. Passion is the key to a life full of confidence. When you spend time doing the things that you’re passionate about, this pulls up your confidence level since your passion makes you feel good about yourself. Doing things that make you happy is so important because one of the causes as to why you lose your confidence is the loss of interest in what makes you feel the most alive. When you are filled with excitement and fulfillment for even just the little things that you do, it inspires you to be someone that’s confident and secure.
Apply the 5 love languages on yourself
Loving yourself is a significant part of having confidence. You have to integrate the belief that you deserve to have that self-love in order to build up your confidence. Since you know yourself more than anyone, you know your love language- you know the kind of actions that people do that make you feel the most loved. In knowing your love language, whether that’s words of affirmation or receiving gifts, doing things for yourself can also help build your confidence since you’re going to practice the art of self-love. Especially if one of your main love languages is words of affirmation, one of the practices you can do is standing in front of a mirror and just saying positive things about yourself,
The way you normally reassure a friend who’s upset about a matter, is the way you should talk to or about yourself, Try saying things like, “I’m going to achieve great things today” or “I’m confident in my capabilities as a person.” These pep talks to yourself not only boost your confidence, but it helps get rid of any doubt you’ve ever had with yourself, The same way you normally love and cheer up your friend is the way you should love yourself, It also helps having a journal and writing positive things about yourself and writing down all the things you’re grateful for. This is helpful to make you see all the great qualities about yourself and great accomplishments you’ve done.
5. Lessen your time on social media
We currently live in the age of social media and technology and while it has its many advantages, social media can be the root cause of comparison which reduces any level of confidence you may have. Spending too much time on social media, especially on Instagram, can affect your self-esteem as you’re seeing all your friends post their travels and their accomplishments on their Instagram feed.
You have to realize that Instagram and Facebook, more than other social media platforms, are the main platform for posting your highlight reels, Nobody ever posts the pictures that are raw and the pictures that show their bad side. But this doesn’t only apply to Instagram. When you spend too much time scrolling on Facebook or Twitter and all you see is negative and sad content, it can affect the way you perceive yourself.
When all you see is drama and sad quotes, instead of lifting you up, it can make you believe that way about yourself when it may be untrue. Your confidence doesn’t get validated from how many likes, follows, or how exquisite your profile may be. It’s all an illusion. You are more than enough and you’re confident enough, even when you don’t believe it. No amount of social media activity will change that.
6. Read or watch self-improvement content
There’s something so motivating about reading a self-help novel or watching a ted talk on how to build your confidence. Even if you aren’t a reader, there are so many clips on YouTube available for your own entertainment and learning on self-improvement and self-help. This is a really inspiring tactic to build confidence because it’s getting to hear or read a third opinion on something you’re struggling with.
Books and even videos can make you feel less alone and more understood in your challenges to becoming someone with more self-esteem. Especially with self-help novels, every novel is so detailed and so precise each in their own way. They have books on manifesting positive thoughts, having good habits, and the like. The great thing about doing these is that after a book or after a video, you always learn something new that inspires you to start doing it in your life. You always new learn principles or new information that makes you feel empowered and makes you believe that you are indeed better than you were yesterday.
7. Spend time on physical activities
Being physically active whether it be sports or hitting the gym has always been proven to be an efficient way to build your confidence. Known for releasing endorphins in your body, physical activity makes you get out of your head, even if it’s just for a little while. Whether you choose to have your workout in the morning or at night, it always makes you feel good right after. It gives you a sense of accomplishment and it can remind you that your workout journey is similar to that of your confidence journey, where you get better every day.
A good workout paired with songs with a fast beat is also proven to make you feel empowered in how you look and how you perceive yourself, Studies have also shown that exercise has been proven to reduce any negative a person may feel, whether it be anxiety, stress, or self-doubt. This is the main reason as to why people who are on their self-improvement journey also tend to hit the gym more. You also don’t have to pressure yourself with an extreme workout right away. Yoga is actually part of being physically active, and it’s half exercise and half meditation which benefits both your body and your mind.
8. Take time to reflect on yourself
Building your confidence isn’t always just about doing things that make you feel good and make you feel empowered. Sometimes, being confident takes reflecting even the worst parts of yourself and being able to admit your mistakes, even when you don’t feel like it. Building your confidence takes transparency and admitting to yourself, more than anyone, what makes you insecure and what made you feel this way and what mistakes you’ve done and what you’re choosing to do about those.
Similar to that of #1, it’s basically just knowing yourself enough to be honest about yourself, even the parts of yourself you just want to hide. The best part of being confident is not having to hide your past mistakes because sometimes, your mistakes are exactly what led to a better version of yourself, It just has to start with transparency and honesty to get there, which is a rough thing to admit if you aren’t ready. Reflecting on yourself is crucial because it gives you time to process your emotions and basically reflect on the entirety of your life.
9. Dress nicely
There is nothing wrong with grooming yourself and dressing up as you please. We all have outfits that boost our confidence, no matter what gender you are, We all have that outfit that makes us feel like we’re on top of the world, which is why you shouldn’t have to feel about doing this. You’re not being self-centered, vain or narcissistic by doing this. This has been proven to be one of the fastest and most efficient ways in building your confidence. Girls, put on that red lipstick and wear that dress that makes you feel like you’re capable of doing anything.
Boys, wear that suit and tie and focus on knowing that you’re going to achieve great things today. Confidence doesn’t always have to cost so much time on your end. Sometimes, all it takes is wearing something that makes you believe in yourself. A lot of the times we feel our self-esteem drop is in the situations that most require our confidence whether that’s reporting a presentation for class, a job interview or an important job meeting with your boss. These are things that tend to overwhelm you with pressure and it’s in these moments that you feel the most insecure about yourself. It’s in these times where it could be so helpful to dress the best that you can, despite what your emotions are telling you. Even if you’re filled with irrational fear and doubt, dressing nicely boosts your confidence even by just a little bit.
10. Don’t be afraid of failure
In building your confidence, it may be significant to trust in your capabilities as a person but it’s even more significant to not be afraid of failing, The more you have that fear of failure, it’s going to constantly hold you back to your full potential of being a confident and secure person. Failure isn’t a bad thing. You have to fail and you have to make mistakes in order to succeed, after all. In the same sense, you shouldn’t feel bad if you second-guess yourself when you’re almost positive that your self-esteem has reached its peak.
Even the most confident people have mistakes and have various moments where they doubt their capabilities, no matter how successful they are. It’s normal to doubt every once in a while, even when you think you’ve become secure in who you are. However, you shouldn’t let that stop you from choosing to live every day with your utmost potential. Failure can be a blessing in disguise if you let it. Success and confidence don’t necessarily come from the best moments of our lives. Sometimes, it comes from moments when you feel close to giving up, from moments where you’ve failed multiple times and yet you just keep fighting back harder the next time around. This is how you can use failure- to either make or break your confidence. In your case, the best choice would be to use it to make you reach the level of confidence you’ve always aspired.
Live a life that makes you proud
Nothing makes a person more confident than waking up in the morning and living a life that they’ve always dreamt of and it’s actually happening before their eyes. This is what should drive you to your core confidence. Go after the kind of life that makes you proud of yourself. After deciding what you really want out of life, you deserve to go after it, even when your confidence hasn’t reached the very peak. They say fake it till you make it.
This principle is effective in the context that even when you don’t feel confident, you act as if you are which would eventually lead to real confidence. Going after your passion as your career is the thing that drives you to be confident, or going after your goals in life, or loving the people that makes you so happy that light shines out of you. These external factors contribute to reaching that confidence and you deserve to do these things with everything you’ve got.
In the end, confidence is a long journey to take but in the end, it’s all about truly knowing yourself. The thing that makes people seem the most confident even when they don’t feel it in their hearts is just the core realization of knowing who they are, what they want and what passion drives them in the morning. These are the things that give you life that eventually lead you to a life of high self-esteem and a life where you’re secure in who you are.