Hope you have had a good week. I’m going to start this blog with a quote.
Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit. – E.E. Cummings
One of the things that held me and many back from pursuing our dreams for many years is fear of failure … and the lack of self-confidence that we needed to overcome that fear.
It’s something we all face, to some degree, I think. The key question: how do you overcome that fear?
By working on your self-confidence and self-esteem. Without really thinking of it in those terms, that’s what I’ve been doing over the years, and that’s what helped me finally overcome my fears, and finally pursue my dreams.
I still have those fears, undoubtedly. But now I know that I can beat them, that I can break through that wall of fear and come out on the other side. I’ve done it many times now, and that success will fuel further success
Forget Everything And Run
Face Everything And Rise.
Taking control of your self-confidence
If you are low in self-confidence, is it possible to do things that will change that? Is your self-confidence in your control?
While it may not seem so, if you are low in self-confidence, I strongly believe that you can do things to increase your self-confidence. It is not genetic, and you do not have to be reliant on others to increase your self-confidence. And if you believe that you are not very competent, not very smart, not very attractive, etc. … that can be changed.
You can become someone worthy of respect, and someone who can pursue what he/she wants despite what others say.
You can do this by taking control of your life, and taking control of your self-confidence. By taking concrete actions that improve your competence, your self-image, you can increase that self-confidence.
I have compiled a list of things to do that will help you do that. None of them is revolutionary, none of them will do it all by themselves. The list certainly isn’t comprehensive. These are just some of my favourite things, stuff that’s worked for me.
And you don’t need to do all of them, as if this were a recipe … pick and choose those that appeal to you, maybe just a couple at first, and give them a try. If they work, try others. If they don’t, try others.
Here they are, in no particular order.
Groom yourself. This seems like such an obvious one, but it’s amazing how much of a difference a shower and a shave can make in your feelings of self-confidence and for your self-image. There have been days when I turned my mood around completely with this one little thing.
Dress nicely. A corollary of the first item above … if you dress nicely, you’ll feel good about yourself. You’ll feel successful and presentable and ready to tackle the world. Now, dressing nicely means something different for everyone … it doesn’t necessarily mean wearing a £500 outfit, but could mean casual clothes that are nice looking and presentable.
Mentally Photoshop your self-image. Our self-image means so much to us, more than we often realize. We have a mental picture of ourselves, and it determines how confident we are in ourselves. But this picture isn’t fixed and immutable. You can change it. Use your mental Photoshopping skills, and work on your self-image. If it’s not a very good one, change it. Figure out why you see yourself that way, and find a way to fix it.
Think positive. One of the things I learned when I started my hypnotherapy business, about two years ago, was how to replace negative thoughts (see next tip) with positive ones. How I can actually change my thoughts, and by doing so make great things happened. With this tiny little skill, I was able to study and learn new skills. It sounds strange but my goodness this works. Seriously. Try it if you haven’t.
Kill negative thoughts. Goes hand-in-hand with the above item, but it’s so important that I made it a separate item. You have to learn to be aware of your self-talk, the thoughts you have about yourself and what you’re doing. When I was studying, sometimes my mind would start to say, “This is too hard. I want to stop and go watch TV.” Well, I soon learned to recognise this negative self-talk, and soon I learned a trick that changed everything in my life: I would imagine that a negative thought was a balloon, and I would vigilantly be on the lookout for these balloons. When I saw one coming, I would pop it (mentally of course). Then replace it with a positive one. (“Come on, I can do this! Only one chapter left!”)
Get to know yourself. When going into battle, the wisest general learns to know his enemy very, very well. You can’t defeat the enemy without knowing him. And when you’re trying to overcome a negative self-image and replace it with self-confidence, your enemy is yourself. Get to know yourself well. Start listening to your thoughts. Start writing things down about yourself, and about the thoughts you have about yourself, and analysing why you have such negative thoughts. And then think about the good things about yourself, the things you can do well, doesn’t matter how big or small, the things you like. Start thinking about your limitations, and whether they’re real limitations or just ones you’ve allowed to be placed there, artificially. Dig deep within yourself, and you’ll come out (eventually) with even greater self-confidence.
Act positive. More than just thinking positive, you have to put it into action. Action, actually, is the key to developing self-confidence. It’s one thing to learn to think positive, but when you start acting on it, you change yourself, one action at a time. You are what you do, and so if you change what you do, you change what you are. Act in a positive way, take action instead of telling yourself you can’t, be positive. Talk to people in a positive way, put energy into your actions. You’ll soon start to notice a difference.
Be kind and generous. Oh, so corny. If this is too corny for you, move on. But for the rest of you, know that being kind to others, and generous with yourself and your time and what you have, is a tremendous way to improve your self-image. and you start to feel good about yourself, and to think that you are a good person. It does wonders for your self-confidence, believe me.
Get prepared. It’s hard to be confident in yourself if you don’t think you’ll do well at something. Beat that feeling by preparing yourself as much as possible. Think about taking an exam: if you haven’t studied, you won’t have much confidence in your abilities to do well on the exam. But if you studied your butt off, you’re prepared, and you’ll be much more confident. Now think of life as your exam, and prepare yourself.
Know your principles and live them. What are the principles upon which your life is built? If you don’t know, you will have trouble, because your life will feel directionless. Find a direction that works for you.
I am going to carry this on next week, but for now try some of these. Let me know how you get on. Of course if you need help I would be very happy to help you. visit www.jonadkin.com to see how I could help you.
Have a great weekend