Becoming more confident is about taking consistent and repeated steps. These strategies will help you stand out of the crowd and boost your confidence and overall self-esteem
What is your best physical feature? How about your finest character trait? Many people find it much easier to think about their flaws than their qualities. If you only notice what you perceive to be wrong with you then it is difficult to build up your confidence.
Try making a list, including positive physical attributes and character traits. Are there any you noted down that surprised you?
RECHARGE YOUR BATTERIES
If you are busy at work it can be draining so try to cut back on the activities outside work that make you tired.
Ensure your spare time is used for relaxing things that recharge your batteries.
Plan your time in such a way that you don’t wait until you have completely run out of energy before you have time on your own.
GET ENOUGH SLEEP
Confidence requires the ability to think clearly so sleep is key. Research has shown that exposure to light in the evening suppresses the production of melatonin, the hormone that controls sleep and wake cycles.
Looking at smartphones, tablets or computers stimulates our brains and we therefore find it hard to switch off when we try to go to sleep.
Keep technology out of the bedroom and try to get around eight hours of unbroken sleep each night.
The natural reaction when we are stressed is for our breathing to quicken and become shallower and you must counteract this.Slowing your breathing down will help you to think clearly and maintain a sense of calm.
When you lack confidence in a situation keep your breathing slow and deep. Inhaling for a count of eight then exhaling for eight can be useful in levelling your breathing. To make the practice even more relaxing close your eyes to focus on your breath.
REMEMBER THAT YOU’RE NOT PERFECT
At times you’re going to mess up. You will miss the point or get the wrong end of the stick. These moments are not your downfall. It’s what you do with them that counts.One way of building your tolerance to these moments is by having more of them.
Find something that will stretch and challenge you. For example join your local theatre group and get out of your comfort zone.
IF YOU ARE BUSY AT WORK IT CAN BE DRAINING SO TRY TO CUT BACK ON THE ACTIVITIES OUTSIDE WORK THAT MAKE YOU TIRED
FAKE IT TO MAKE IT
Choose a specific situation that makes you nervous. It may be something simple like walking into a meeting or it may be when you next meet someone whom you find intimidating.
For the next month ensure that before each of your chosen situations you adopt a “power pose” for a minimum of two minutes.Hold your head up, put your arms behind your head and stretch your legs out.
When we are nervous we tend to want to make ourselves as small as possible, folding our arms and lowering our heads.
Practise opening yourself up to release tension and after a month of doing this notice how you feel in these situations. You will realise that you feel different, less stressed and in greater control of the situation.
Imagine the effect on your confidence if you believed that the whole universe and everything in it was working in your favour. Say to yourself each morning “I can do it” and “it will be OK”.
Being positive will help you to feel better and more confident.
Research shows that happy people are 31 per cent more productive than those who are negative, neutral or stressed.
Training yourself to look for the positive will help you to make better decisions more quickly and to be more productive.
PLAN FOR THE BEST
Many people assume they should plan for the worst. This includes how they travel, how they plan their finances, their relationships and more.
Turn this on its head to try to think more optimistically about your situation. For example think about your attitude to going on holiday.
Do you pack for every possible eventuality, incurring baggage charges at the airport or an aching back from carrying cases? Instead, why not just check the weather forecast and pack based on that.
If something unexpected comes along you can always buy or borrow something.
DON’T GIVE UP
Imagine you had a confidence muscle. To strengthen a muscle you need to exercise over and over again and in doing so it grows bigger and stronger. It is the same with confidence.
Becoming more confident is about taking consistent and repeated steps. The reason we often feel lacking in confidence is as a result of something being new, unfamiliar and outside our comfort zone. Keep at it.
By repeating small, confidence boosting actions over and over again our brains begin to create new connections and in doing so our comfort zone begins to expand.
CULLED FROM: Secrets Of Confident People by Richard Nugent