Lots of us would love to have more confidence but it’s not always something that comes naturally for many people. If you’re lacking in self esteem, it can have a big knock on effect on your relationships, career and other key parts of your life.
Here are 9 tips for boosting your confidence and self esteem:
Overcoming Negative Thoughts
Negative self talk can be hugely detrimental for your self esteem. We all have an inner critic that tries to guide us through life and if yours is full of negative comments, it can become the norm to listen to it and let it dictate to you.
Negative thoughts happen a lot and can become second nature – to the point that you don’t even realise how many you have in the average day.
The first step is to become aware of when they happen. Don’t try to fight them too much; when a negative thought comes into your mind, acknowledge it and try to let it float away. This can take some time to get used to, especially if negative thoughts are a big part of your life. Overcoming them is a really important aspect of building your confidence.
Whenever you get a negative thought, try to think of up to 5 positive thoughts that will lessen its power and stop it being a “truth” in your mind.
Don’t just skim over these thoughts- let them sink in for a while before you acknowledge the next positive thought.
Surround Yourself With Positive People
How often do you find yourself feeling mentally drained after spending time with negative people?
This isn’t too surprising, given that experts claim that our outlook in life is made up of the 5 people we spend the most time with. If these people don’t have your best interests at heart and only end up dragging you down with their negativity, it’s not going to do much for your self esteem.
Spending time with people who support you and have a positive attitude towards you is a lot more likely to improve your confidence.
Face your Fears
Self doubt can keep you rigidly in your comfort zone and stop you pursuing your hopes, dreams and plans for the future. Breaking free of this is key for moving forwards in your life and making positive changes. If anxiety is stopping you getting involved in certain situations, gradually immersing yourself in them through Exposure Therapy is a scary but effective way to face your fears head-on.
Get Out of Your Comfort Zone
We all have one thing we’d love to have the confidence to do, whether this is changing jobs, setting up a dream business or trying a new hobby.
Low self esteem can make this seem daunting and impossible. Breaking the bigger picture down into smaller steps can make it less scary. Back yourself to take that first step towards it and don’t think beyond it. Then focus on the next step and so on. With each step you successfully complete, your confidence and belief in yourself should increase.
Challenge Limiting Beliefs About Yourself
Poor self esteem can often be linked to self limiting beliefs about yourself that stem from your childhood. Common examples can be thoughts like “this didn’t work out so I’m not cut out for anything” and “no one will like me”. It goes without saying that these kind of beliefs will hold you back!
Recognising that these type of beliefs aren’t automatically truths can do wonders for your self esteem but it’s not always an easy thing to do when they are so long held.
Focus on Your Strengths
If you have low self esteem, it’s easy to feel that you’re not good at anything. You may also feel inferior to people who you feel have talents and skills. Truth is, we all have strengths and weaknesses but with low self esteem, you can get fixated on what you’re not so good at and completely gloss over what you are good at.
Make a list of 5 things you do well and if you get stuck, ask other people to help you out. You might be surprised to know how other people see you versus how you see yourself.
Learn to Take Praise on Board
It’s incredibly easy to accept that any negative comments or situations are automatically true while not truly acknowledging any positive compliments that come your way. It’s common for people with low self esteem to assume that praise only comes through politeness or that it was pure luck that caused a positive situation and not your skills.
This kind of self talk needs to be swapped for a more positive acceptance that praise, compliments and success are a reflection of your skills.
Stop Trying to Be Perfect
Here’s the thing – perfection doesn’t actually exist and you’ll likely destroy your confidence trying to achieve it. You’re better off striving to be the best version of yourself you can be and realising you’re not a failure if you’re not “perfect”.
Becoming more confident isn’t something that will happen overnight. To be more confident, you’re essentially rewiring your brain and changing how you see yourself.