Updated: Dec 18, 2019
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It takes a while to build up good self-confidence. Try to take satisfaction from the small achievements: any small goal you meet or a day which goes well. Also, whatever you do, remember that the steps you are making will help you to learn about yourself and how to live alongside others.
Self-confidence can have a profound impact on our lives. With low self-confidence we are less likely to reach for things we want, take up new opportunities or achieve our ambitions. As clinical psychologist Mary Welford says, strong self-confidence “helps us engage fully with life.” We feel more capable of tackling difficult situations and we can recover quicker after facing setbacks. So improving how we perceive ourselves can bring out great changes for the better.
Self-confidence based on how your think of yourself. It comes from the inner discussion you have with yourself. If you talk kindly to yourself you feel happy about the person you are. But if you constantly do yourself down, you are likely to feel unhappy about who your are.
If you are feeling your self-confidence slipping, here are ten tips for you.
1. Speak to yourself as you’d talk to a friend
Sometimes it is easier to comfort and encourage others than yourself. The right words come easier to be kind. Try to imagine that you are someone else, comforting a friend who is feeling as you are and think of what you’d say. By saying this to yourself you might find your self-image becomes more positive.
2. Write yourself a letter
Another method would be to write yourself a kind letter. Again, write it as you would to a friend who is feeling unconfident and think of what you would say to them. After writing you can reread it as if it is addressed to you and take comfort from the words that you have addressed to yourself. By absorbing this you may begin to feel more happy about yourself and your abilities.
3. Pay attention to your wellbeing
By taking time to relax you are likely to feel more at ease. Spend a few minutes sitting in an upright but comfortable position and focusing on gentle breathing. According to Welford, this will “bring calmness and a sense of inner warmth and well-being to the mind and body.” She also suggests spending time doing an enjoyable activity, for example, going for a walk with a friend. Such leisure time will contribute to stronger self-esteem.
4. Set yourself goals
When we have met a target we feel a sense of achievement that boosts our confidence. If you set yourself some realistic goals, and you work at meeting them you will feel the advantages. For example, you might decide to apply for a new job or accept the extra responsibilities of a promotion. You might pluck up the courage to ask someone on a date or to speak in public. It might seem difficult at first especially because you are setting yourself up for a potential rejection. But you can help pick yourself up and once you have achieved a goal, however small, you will feel better about yourself.
5. Keep a record of your thoughts
You might want to keep a diary in which to write down how you feel about yourself from day to day. This will help you keep track of any negative thoughts that aren’t helping you and allow you to combat them.
6. Take time to reflect
It might help you to look back and distinguish which thoughts are accurate and which are unfair to yourself.
Take some time to look back at how you’ve perceived yourself and reflect on it. You will gain a better understanding of your self-image and with this information you can work out where you might be treating yourself unfairly. This will give you strong foundations to move forward and decide how to be kinder to yourself.
7. Repeat positive affirmations
Find yourself a kind of mantra, tailored especially to you. This could be something like, “I know myself and I’m a good person,” “I am fortunate for the life I have,” “I choose to be present and enjoy every moment,” or “I’ve overcome great difficulties and I will again.” You can repeat this to yourself in your head. Eventually the positive affirmation will sink in to improve your general perception of yourself.
8. Make negative thoughts positive
When your confidence has taken a blow it is easy to slip into negative thinking patterns. You might doubt your abilities or feel the weight of so many chores that life feels tiresome. If this is the case, try changing your inner voice. If you think “I can’t do that,” pause and change it to “I will do it.” Switch from “I have to...” to “I want to…” and from “I should…” to “I choose to…”
9. Build up a positive self-image
By using these techniques and any others you might come across you will feel your self-confidence slowly improving. Repeatedly thinking kindly of yourself will reinforce a positive self image that will become stronger and stronger each day. You must of course allow this to happen and accept that it is normal and healthy to see yourself in a positive light. Keep letting yourself feel good about who you are.
10. Be patient
Finally, remember that things won’t change instantly. It takes a while to build up good self-confidence. Try to take satisfaction from the small achievements: any small goal you meet or a day which goes well. Also, whatever you do, remember that the steps you are making will help you to learn about yourself and how to live alongside others.
You can do this, you are amazing.