How To Build Confidence And Overcome Self-Doubt
Every human being has moments of self-doubt. Those destructive thoughts that overwhelm your mind and make you lose what little confidence you have left. If you have found that you are constantly doubting your abilities in life and struggling with self-confidence, then you’re in luck. There are ways to help yourself through these feelings and come out the other side. You just have to have a path to follow.
Every day is a new challenge. Some days are easy and some are more difficult. But when self-doubt creeps in, it can be invasive. It can start in one area and eek into those where you have always felt pretty confident. It is important for each of us to try to live life fully and remember that we are awesome individuals – despite what our minds might tell us sometimes. Here are some steps to get you going in the right direction.
Think Affirming Thoughts
Wake up each day and say something positive about yourself. If you can’t come up with something on the fly each morning, start making a list during the day. There are so many positive aspects to each and every one of us, but sometimes we don’t see ourselves as everybody else does. If that is the case for you, try to include positive traits that you believe others see in you.
After the first few days of thinking affirming thoughts when you wake up in the morning, look into your bathroom mirror as you brush your teeth and try to repeat them. Look yourself in the eyes and give yourself a compliment. Try to become the biggest cheerleader for who you know you are.
Follow my series of Mindfulness Meditation exercises to help yourself get more comfortable with affirmations.
Let Go of the Past
One the biggest reasons we doubt ourselves is because of our past mistakes. Whatever you did or didn’t do in a past doesn’t matter in the present moment. Learn to let go of the past by forgiving yourself for your mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes, that is part of the life learning process. The key to making the future brighter is by changing what you do from here forward.
If letting go of the past isn’t as easy as just making a decision, start taking steps. Call the person you feel you’ve wronged and apologize. It doesn’t matter if it’s twenty years later – for you, it is not. For you, it is as present today as it was the day it happened. It is time to take steps that will allow you to let it go. You can read more about how to start living in the moment to get things moving in the right direction.
Stop Worrying About Others
When we doubt ourselves, we start to worry about what others think of us. For lack of a better way of saying it, it is really none of our business what someone else thinks of us. Let them judge and be miserable on their own! Let go of the chains that lock you into living a life that others accept, judge or envy, be who you are, and don’t ask for permission.
Boundaries are something that we all need in order to live an independent, self-confident life. Having boundaries doesn’t mean that you shut everyone out or that you hide in your little hole without influence from others. What they mean is that you are choosing to live a healthy existence – with those you love at a healthy closeness AND a healthy distance – so that you can make decisions that continue to make you a whole individual who can contribute to society and anyone else you choose.
Start Setting Goals
People often lose confidence because they’ve stopped setting goals and working towards something larger than who they are and what they have always had. Sit down today and set some goals in motion. For real. Get a pad of paper and a pen or open a new doc on your computer and get to writing.
On this outline of what goals you want to accomplish can be anything from basic ideas (“I want to be happy”) with space to create lists of how, to specific plans (“I want to take a photography class”). Be sure these goals are reasonable and attainable with an end date in mind. Wake up each and every day with these goals as your main priority. What we have always done in the past may be comfortable and cozy, but it is not making you happy or self-confident. Remember the definition of insanity…
Pick up a New Hobby
Get out in the world and do something new today! When we test our ability to learn a new hobby or try something new, it’s scary. This scary moment can fuel self-doubt at first, but what happens when you pick up a new hobby and are successful with it? It boosts your confidence! So go and pick up a new hobby!
Let’s be realistic. There are tens of thousands of classes, activities, groups, and clubs that you can join. Start by getting an idea of what you have always been interested in or something that you’ve always wanted to try. This is the time, my friend.
If you live in a small town where there aren’t a lot of immediate resources, look online. Most everything you can think of (crafting, cooking, knitting, dancing, singing, fencing, beading, book clubs, and about eight hundred other options) are available to learn online. Granted, taking classes online won’t have you meeting new people, but it’s a fantastic start. It is an excellent way to see what you actually enjoy before investing too much time or money. Don’t have the money to pay for a class online? Start with YouTube! People live to make videos teaching you new hobbies, so take advantage of the free resources first!
Always remember that you can’t remove doubt from your life completely. Doubt is a mechanism that we need to protect us from failure and making mistakes that could be disastrous. On the other hand, self-doubt can sabotage us from growth. Keeping yourself moving forward is the key to boosting confidence and squashing those negative little voices in your head. Don’t let yourself become stagnant. Keep putting one foot in front of the other.