8 Simple Tips for Improving Your Self Confidence


PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT / Saturday, January 26th, 2019

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I’ve struggled with self-doubt for most of my life. I always cared too much about pleasing everyone around me, avoiding conflict or hurting anyone’s feelings, and also way too much of what others thought of me. I rarely gave an honest opinion, and instead would just agree or follow the opinions of others to “fit in” or avoid being judged. I eventually lost myself, and I actually got to a point where I didn’t know what I was doing in my life for me and what I was doing or saying to please those around me. I completely lost my authenticity. I didn’t know what I enjoyed or what my passions were because I spent so long hiding behind self doubt and following the norms and expectations of others. When I finally realized this, I was heartbroken and knew I needed to make some real changes.

It really wasn’t until that past 3-4 years that I started to work on overcoming that self-doubt and started working on improving my self-confidence. This involved a lot of internal reflection and improvements, pushing myself out of my comfort zone, and working hard to truly figure out who I was and what I wanted from my life. But, by focusing on those changes and improvements I became more confident in my choices, in my life, and with myself.

So I wanted to write a post that details what I focused on over the past 3+ years to improve my self-confidence and self-love.

 

1 | Make The Choice

Honestly the very first step is choosing to make the changes and put in the work. It is also realizing that YOU have the power to turn the page and start a new chapter in the book of your life. It is never ever too late to make a change in your life, but the first step is accepting that you need to and then committing to making it happen.

I recommend writing the end goal down and then writing down some action steps to help you get there. For example in your journal, planner, or on some random piece of paper, write down “I want to be more confident”. Now write down some small action steps such as “I will try new things”, “I will practice self love with positive affirmations”, “I will forgive my past mistakes”, etc.

I find writing down a goal makes it a little bit more realistic. I also try to write it somewhere that I will see it often so I have the constant reminder of the goals I want to achieve.

Now, don’t worry, not all my step are this cheesy! And if you are unsure of what action steps to use, that is where the next items in this list will come in handy!

2 | Reflect, Reflect, Reflect

As I mentioned, in my personal experience, my lack of self-confidence also came with a lack of knowing my true self. I believe when people have low self esteem, they often times struggle with who they truly are and what they really want in life. They get caught up in pleasing others or “fitting in” and they never focus on what they truly love or what’s fills them up with passion. Being our authentic selves takes guts, so when we lack confidence, it’s hard to muster up the courage to put ourselves out there.

But, it’s almost like a vicious cycle. The less confidence we have, the less we put ourselves out there and try new things. The less we try new things, the less we learn about ourselves and our passions, and the less experiences we have. The less experience and passions we have, the less likely we are to voice opinions and ideas, and instead become much more likely to latch on to others opinions and expectations. The more we latch onto others opinions and expectations, the more we lose ourselves, and the less confidence we have. And then the cycle repeats again and again and again until we forget what opinions, likes, and dislikes, are truly YOURS.

So, to fix this, we need to reflect!

Related Post: 5 Ways to Incorporate Self-Reflection into Your Life

3 | Stop Comparing

One of the most important aspects of becoming more confident, is to stop comparing every aspect of your life to everyone else’s. Comparison is the thief of joy. No one’s journey is the same, so how can you possibly compare your journey to anyone else’s? In society today we are surrounded by social media, and it is SO easy to get caught up in comparing our bodies, our possessions, our careers, our timeline, and so much more with everyone else around us. We are all at different stages in our lives, so stop looking at everyone else’s highlight reel on Instagram and focus on YOU and everything you have accomplished in your life.

The important thing is that we are always asking ourselves what we want from our lives? Then we work on setting goals and accomplishing them. The people you are comparing yourself to didn’t get to where they are by envying those around them and then feeling sorry for themselves, they put in the work, and achieved what I am sure started out as a simple goal.

Follow your own path, do what works for you, let go of expectations and focus on YOUR journey. Instead of comparing yourself to others, celebrate their success and use them as a motivator to achieve your own goals, whatever they may be!

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4 | Make a List of All Your Strengths and Accomplishments

Nothing gives you a confidence boost quite like writing out all of your greatest accomplishments or reflecting on your strengths! Sometimes we get so caught up in our flaws or focused on the negatives we forget how much we have to be proud of.

I work in Human Resources, and I have done many interviews. A very common interview question is “What are your 3 biggest strengths”. You wouldn’t believe how many people struggle with this question! It should not be that difficult to list 3 positive strengths about yourself, but we do. We don’t focus on the positives about ourselves often enough, so when put on the spot, they do not come naturally to our mind.

Make it a habit in your life! Every now and again, write down 3-5 strengths you have, a few things you are good at, a few accomplishments you are proud of, etc. Keep the positives fresh in your mind so you can easily think of them when you need that bout of confidence!

5 | Surround Yourself by Supportive People

Have you ever heard the saying “You become most like the top 5 people you spend your time with”. That may not be the exact phrase but you see what I am saying. So, make sure the people you are surrounding yourself with are supportive, encouraging, share similar interests as you, and have personality traits that you yourself appreciate or want to have.

The thing is, if you are hanging around people who are not supportive or you or are always negative, that negativity and mindset is contagious. These are the people in your life who complain, shoot down or judge your goals, make you feel like you can’t achieve the things you want in life, or simply judge you for being YOU. Seriously, why are these people part of your life?

If you feel you have the change or alter yourself to please someone in your life, and you are not able to be your true self around them out of fear of judgement, than you DO NOT need them in your life. And yes, this also includes family.

Now with family it can be tough, and I am not saying you need to cut them out completely, but either let them know how you are feeling and hope they change, OR distance yourself from them as much as you are able to.

6 | Invest in Yourself

I think self doubt and self improvement go hand in hand. The more we work on ourselves and our personal growth, the more confident we become. So invest in yourself! Personal investment is never a waste of time or money. Take the time to work on the things you want to improve about yourself, to learn new things, and to practice self care. And don’t be afraid to invest not only your time, but a bit of money as well! You are worth it! Take that class or workshop you’ve been eyeing, buy that self help book that your friend recommended, purchase a new planner if you think it’ll help you be more organized! It doesn’t have to be a huge investment from a time or money standpoint (but it can be as well). No matter how big or small, your self improvement and overall betterment is always worth the investment!

7 | Use Positive Affirmations

I’ll be the first to admit that saying positive things out loud to yourself is weird. At least at first. But it works! You also get over the initial weirdness, I promise.

Something I’ve been trying more of lately is putting things out into the universe in hopes they will happen. I think we do have a power to manifest what we get in life, but I think it comes from being positive, seeking and taking opportunities as they come to us, and being open to the possibility of having to take a different path (or a huge detour)  to get to our dreams.

I do NOT believe you can just say something out loud and it will come true. It’s about learning to believe what you are saying and opening yourself up to everything life throws your way to help you achieve it.

Start by saying “I will be more confident this year” out loud every day. Then add in “I will not let others opinions affect my confidence” or simply state one positive attribute about yourself every morning until you start to see that they are really true. Some other great affirmations are: “I am good enough” “I deserve to accomplish my goals” “I can ____” “I am in control of my life” “I am open to new opportunities that will help me grow”.

8 | Practice Gratitude

By Focusing on all the great things in our lives, we stop focusing so much on the things we may not have. When we start to practice gratitude regularly, we remind ourselves that we have so much to be thankful for and we move away from constantly comparing our lives to what others have or what they have accomplished. We stop putting so much thought into others opinions because we recognize that we have plenty in our lives to be proud of. Also, by focusing on all the positive aspects of our lives, rather than nit picking at the negatives, we become more confident in ourselves.

Related Post: 6 Ways Gratitude Improves Your Life

 

So there you have it! Those are my 8 simple tips for improving your self-confidence. What makes you feel more confident? Let me know in the comments below?

 

 

Overcome Your Self Doubt in 6 Days with this FREE Mini Course

 

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7 Replies to “8 Simple Tips for Improving Your Self Confidence”

  1. Awesome post, thank you! It is so hard in today’s world to avoid comparison when social media is on our face ALL the time. I think this is an area to work on! I have found a recent resource that I have just treasured. I am in the throws of a career change and I really wanted to identify my strengths/ weaknesses. The book Defining You, by Fiona Murden makes self exploration and empowerment SO tangible, It was easy and absolutely rewarding. My self-confidence has never been better because I know how to make things work for ME! I found out more here, http://www.fionamurden.com. Definitely check this one out.

    1. Hi Kris,

      I am so happy you enjoyed the post! Thanks so much for the book recommendation, I will check it out, it sounds like it is right up my alley! I love anything that helps me learn more about myself. Thanks for reading!

  2. These are all useful tips! I think the most important one is you have to stop comparing yourself to others. I was brought up in a culture where comparison was normal, even encouraged. I remember my mom would always tell me so and so’s kids did better in school, play the piano better, etc. in an attempt to “fuel my motivation” and it was detrimental to my self esteem. I finally told her to stop comparing me to other kids because I’m not them, and I had to learn to stop comparing myself. It made all the difference!

  3. Great post, Kendra!

    Making the choice to make change and reflecting on what isn’t working are such important steps in a multitude of areas in life. The list you’ve got here will be a big help to others.

    I started using positive affirmations a few months ago. I think they work because we’re almost always telling ourselves negative stories like “You can’t do that”, whereas positive affirmations are positive stories that override those negative thoughts.

    Thanks for sharing!

  4. Love this! I think a lot of time it’s hard for people to let go of self-doubt no matter how old they get simply because it’s something most of us learn how to do at a very young age.

    Even now in my mid 20s, I have all the confidence in the world to chase after my dreams and live my best life, but at the same time I still got that whole self-doubting myself down to a T.

    It’s definitely a healing process and one that unfortunately doesn’t happen over night. These are great tips and a great guidance to overcoming your self-doubt. Perhaps the biggest one where everybody really should start is to stop comparing ourselves, because after all that’s how self-doubt begins, right?

    Thank you for this post, I needed it this morning!

  5. Great post! To stop comparing ourselves to others is, like you said, a really big thing today when all we see is travel photos and beautiful filtered updates. I love Steven Furtick’s quote:

    “The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel.”

    I limit my time on social media because I know that I get jealous easily and compare my life to others. I have chronic Lyme disease which limits what I can do, so focusing on the things I CAN do is way more beneficial than being sad that I can’t go backpacking in the mountains right now. Plus, as he said, that is only the highlight reel. My life will look awesome as well if I only focus on my dance group, game nights, dogs, and vacations. I find that a gratitude journal is a great way for me to remember and focus on the great things I have in my life. 🙂

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