Confidence is one of the winners’ mental characteristics which plays bigger part in one’s development and growth. Confidence is like the Sun which all other character traits circle around.
The way you move, the way you talk to yourself, the way you face adversity, the way you expose yourself to new things, challenges and perspectives, and even the way you build your relationships can come from and resolve to different places according your confidence levels.
Confidence, a.k.a. self-belief is like a muscle: you’ve got to practice it. Visualization, preparation and performing experience are controllable, therefore, can change.
We are used to think about external factors like positive feedback, compliments or achieving results as the main confidence builder. On the other hand, failure and mistakes are commonly perceived as confidence busters. But that does not tell you the whole story… In fact, the internal factors (the way we treat ourselves) are much more decisive to our confidence.
So, how do you effectively start strengthening your confidence?
1 – Pay attention to your self-talk. Don’t you find people who are constantly ruminating about past events, traumatic episodes, misfortune, criticizing and complaining about their lives pretty much exhausting?
Your mind is always there with you. Do you know what it is saying to you right now? Avoid self-recrimination and pointing fingers to evidence of bad outcomes from your actions. Educate your mind by learning how it perceives things and talks to you. Let your mind be your best friend, your number one supporter, not some energy draining, uninspired tool to bring you down.
Mistakes happen but they can be perceived as an improving experience. Be patient with yourself. Be kind to your errors. You are the master; your mind is the disciple.
2 – Pay attention to your thoughts. Our spoken and written words are the result of our thinking. Even though we might not verbalize some bad feelings, or emotions, the fact is that they are there.
Start by identifying WHAT thoughts come to mind (when you’re practicing, when you’re resting, or even when you’re engaged in an activity and you can’t explain where did this thought came from).
Some thoughts are irrelevant or distracting, others are unhelpful or self-destructive, and others might seem too analytical or not achievable.
3 – When you start addressing to those words and thoughts it’s time to choose the ones that are actually useful and bring you a sense of competence from those harmful and self-sabotaging ones.
Think of it as opening your front door to a new person. Is he friendly or harmful? Would you invite him to come in? Changing your confidence habits starts here.
Be your own best friend. Support yourself. Cheer and celebrate tiny gains, improvements or wins. Be proud of yourself. Be patient. Give your brain time to learn new things, assimilate and replicate them. Laugh more. Wink an eye in the mirror every time you mess up. Be gentle. Accept where you are right now and you will find some peace of mind.
Confidence building starts within. It’s like the roots of a tree: the deeper they’re grounded to earth, the stronger their branches will be. No matter what wind, cold or rain may lay upon that tree, it will always be strong and healthy. It’s growth is autonomous and internal, not dependable or external.
Are you feeling more confident now? Great, but do remember, it’s not about what you have read, it’s about what you say to yourself 😉