There you are at a certain period of your life, sitting and wondering how did I get here? Why haven’t I done more? Why does it feel like I am stuck in some perpetual idle moment in which the only thing that seems going forward is time?
At the same time, deep in yourself, you know that you could and you still can do more. You know it, all your friends know it, yet there you are.
Bono said it best – “Stuck in a moment that you can’t get out of”.
Bono might be the epiphany of cool and success, but that doesn’t mean his lyrics are all there is to it. On the contrary, with some deliberate effort and strong determination, you can increase your self-confidence and live up to your fullest potential.
Don’t know how?
Don’t worry, you don’t need a life coach, a psychologist, or someone else to help you shine again. You can be your own guru and put yourself back on the fast track of success without anyone’s help.
After all, no one knows you better than you.
But that doesn’t mean you need to figure out everything on your own. To make things easier we’ve assembled a list of things you can do to increase your self-confidence.
Consider this your blueprint, the one-way path that leads only in one direction – success!
Here we go.
Rediscover Your Competencies and Develop Them
One of the best ways to start building up your self-confidence is by demonstrating real ability.
For example, if you are a good cook, start throwing dinner parties for colleagues and friends. Or maybe you were a good runner at some point. Regardless of your age, you can start training again and start competing.
In short, find something that you are good at and start building on that. Success in one area attracts success in another area of your life. You don’t need a high paid psychiatrist or a life coach to tell you the effect of success over self-confidence.
Replace Self-Criticism With Self-Compassion
Being self-critical can further lower our self-confidence. The biggest drawback is when our self-critical inner monologue starts. That’s when whatever left self-confidence we got left in the tank goes in the drain.
To battle this, and you must do, is to replace your self-criticism with self-compassion. Imagine that you are talking to a friend, not yourself. Approach the matter from a compassionate point of stand and not from a point of criticism.
Ask yourself, what advice would you give to a dear friend of yours if they were in your shoes? The thing is when it comes to friends, we tend to be much more compassionate then we are to ourselves. That is why you need to act like that.
It is a proven method that has been tested over and over in practice. Many people claim it helped them to go through some difficult times. There is no reason why it wouldn’t help you as well.
Don’t aim big, make it a small challenge that you can accomplish by yourself. Something that takes you a step from your comfort zone, maybe something you haven’t done before.
For example, invite your colleagues for a drink after work, even that you haven’t done it before. Maybe take a yoga class, learn to knit, learn to cook a dish, things like that. These are all small wins that can bring big gains and that can restore your self-confidence before you know it.
Start Facing Your Fears
Being fearful and not trying new things go hand in hand, and has a lot to do with low self-confidence.
Being afraid to try new things only reaffirms your inner critic that keeps on repeating that you are not good enough for any of those things. It is what keeps you in your “so-called” safe zone which is nothing but a point of stagnation – the thing that doesn’t want you to move forward.
However, if you don’t try new things, if you don’t find the courage to step out of that comfort zone, you will never know how far you can go in life and what you can achieve ultimately.
Again, the trick here is starting small and work your way to the things that scare you most. One win at a time and you will find yourself knocking down your fears and realizing your true potential.
That’s the true recipe for growth!
Soon you will realize that in most cases, the fear of falling was unjustified. Yes, sometimes you might fall flat on your face. But you will not see it as the end of the world type of experience, but rather just another experience.
Re-affirm your Qualities
This is an exercise that has proven quite effective in reviving self-confidence after suffering a blow.
Create a list that contains qualities of yours that are relevant to the situation you got yourself into.
For example, you didn’t get that promotion you were hoping for. Make a list of all the qualities that make you a valuable employee. Maybe you are responsible, maybe you got some unique set of skills no one has in the company, you have strong working ethics or stuff like that.
Then use one of the points on your list to write a short essay (not more than two paragraphs).
Write about why that particular quality is so valuable and why it will be appreciated in the future. The next day chooses a different item from your list and write down another one. Repeat the exercise every day until you cover all your qualities listed there.
By the time you are done writing, your self-esteem should get a much-needed boost.
The bottom line is that increasing your self-confidence is not an overnight kind of thing, but something that needs a bit of work. It requires developing healthy emotional habits through proven exercises and devotion.
But if you are doing so correctly, you will experience a great psychological and emotional return on your investment.