Let’s face it, we all struggle with low self-confidence at one point or another as a result from various factors including: fear of the unknown, criticism, being unhappy with personal appearance (self-esteem), feeling unprepared, poor time-management, lack of knowledge and previous failures.
Even as we grow, there are days where we feel a little more confident than others as we go about with our daily lives and responsibilities.
Knowing how to give yourself a confidence boost can do wonders, same goes for our self-esteem. Do note that self- confidence and self-esteem are two different things but they are closely linked.
Confidence is the term we use to describe how we feel about our ability to perform roles, functions and tasks while self-esteem is how we feel about ourselves, the way we look, the way we think – whether or not we feel worthy or valued.
Here’s 3 things you can practice to help boost your confidence:
Plan ahead and Prepare
We tend to feel less confident when we are faced with a new experience, task, or situation. With bit of planning and preparation, it will help us face the unknown better.
One good example would be when you are applying for a new job and you would need to go for an interview.
You would take time to prepare and plan for the interview- what you are going to say, perhaps listing down a few potential questions that the interviewer may ask and practice your answers with friends or family for feedback.
The key is to try to take control of unknown situations the best you can, break down tasks into smaller sub-tasks and plan as many as you can.
Gain Knowledge and Experience
Being unsure of our ability to manage a situation, roles, tasks can sometimes affect our confidence as well as our performance. Knowing what to expect, how, and why things are done will help makes us feel a bit more prepared and ultimately more confident.
By doing something we have learned a lot about we put theory to practice which develops confidence and adds to the learning and comprehension.
The basic rules of positive thinking are to highlight your strengths and successes and learn from your weaknesses and mistakes. This is a lot easier than it sounds, we often dwell on things that we are not happy with from our past – making them into bigger issues than they need to be.
These negative thoughts can be very damaging to confidence and your ability to achieve goals. Try to change the way you think about your life by :
Knowing your strength and weakness- make a list of thing that you are good at and things you know you need to improve on. Discuss them with friends and family as they will be able to add to your list. From there, develop your strengths and find ways to improve or manage your weaknesses.
Accepting the fact that we all make mistakes- do not be too hard on yourself and see your mistakes as a negative thing. Instead, take it as a learning opportunity.
Accepting compliments and complimenting yourself- when you receive a compliment from somebody else, thank them and ask for more details; what exactly did they like? Recognise your own achievements and celebrate them by rewarding yourself and telling friends and family about them.
Taking criticism in stride- Criticism is just the opinion of somebody else. Be assertive when receiving criticism, don’t reply in a defensive way or let criticism lower your self-esteem. Listen to the criticism and make sure that you understand what is being said, use criticism as a way to learn and improve.
It also helps to stay cheerful and embrace a more positive outlook on life. Be generous with your compliments to others. Only complain or criticize when necessary. Even then, do so in a constructive manner.