So, how can you be more confident? Here’s your complete, step-by-step guide:
1. Be Specific
First things first, let’s get specific.
In order to tame the demon, you’ve got to name the demon. Where do you lack confidence? When do you feel self-doubt and your negative emotions creeping in? Where do you feel your skills or abilities are limiting you? Where would you like to have more confidence?
Once you get specific, it won’t feel so overwhelming as you’ll have something tangible to tackle.
Maybe you want the confidence to go out on your own and start a new business? Or maybe you’d like to go back to school to get the degree you’ve always wanted? Perhaps you’d like the confidence to go on an adventure or take a trip you’ve been thinking about for some time.
Take a moment now, identify and put into a complete statement: Where do you specifically want to have more confidence?
2. Uncover What Gives You Confidence
This is personal, so it will vary from person to person. There’s no one size fits all approach to confidence and what works for one, won’t always work for another.
How can you figure out what gives you confidence? Think about a couple times in your life when you felt most confident.
Now, think about what was it about those times that made you feel so empowered.
Was it the environment you were in? Something you were doing? A feeling you had? The more you get clear about this for yourself, the easier it will be to tap into when you need it.
3. Be True to You
One of the surest ways to lose confidence is try to be someone else. One of the best ways to build your confidence? Be true to yourself.
When you’re trying to be someone you’re not, every part of you resists it. You are not everyone else. You are you. And the more you can understand who you are and what you value the stronger you will be.
When you stray away from who you are, you lose confidence because it’s ‘just not you’.
Think about what makes you, uniquely you. Write it down. Think about what you value and what’s important to you. Write that down, too.
4. Remember You Are 100% Smart
When one of my daughters was in the 4th grade, her teacher gave an assignment called 100% smart. In this activity, the kids had to make a pie chart and identify what percentage smart they were in each of the following areas; people, self, body, math, word, music, art.
For example, my daughter was 25% body smart, but only 5% art smart. This was such an insightful exercise for her and something I have shared with many clients over the years. She realized that even though she lacked confidence in art, there were so many other areas where she excelled.
This is true for everyone. So, maybe you’re not the best public speaker, but are you a great parent, smart with your money, or creative?
Too many people spend way too much time trying to improve, change, be more of this or less of that. Instead, what if you spent more time acknowledging your talents, skills and successes?
Try this for one week: at the end of each day, write down at least 3 things that you did well, felt good about, or were proud of yourself for. Know your strengths, know your talents and know you’re 100% smart.
5. Stop Comparing Yourself
Nothing zaps your confidence more than comparing yourself to others. Especially now, with social media and the wonderful opportunity to judge yourself against so many others! Lack of confidence comes from a gap in where you see yourself and where you think you should be.
Imagine you are preparing to give a big presentation or speech. So you do your research, which includes watching some of the best speakers in the world doing their Ted Talks. Of course you are going to feel inferior.
Stop comparing yourself to others. Just stop. If you still feel a compelling need to compare – compare yourself to yourself. Measure how far you’ve come. See how much improvement you’ve made. Acknowledge your wins and successes.