In this post we are going to deal with the different techniques that will help you learn to strengthen the basis of self-confidence and that we encourage you to put into practice right away.
- Avoiding the comparison trap
Without a doubt, self-confidence and self-esteem are linked to what we believe about our abilities and value, but how can we know our abilities? Ideally by comparing ourselves with other people.
The problem that can arise is that there is always, always someone we know, or have seen, perhaps on LinkedIn, Facebook or Instagram who is “better” than us, more successful, brighter, smarter or has done more and better things than you. But, comparing your skills and values with those of other more admirable people will only lead to disappointment and frustration. So let’s avoid doing that.
How many times do we compare ourselves to less brilliant people? Human beings have a tendency to compare the worst of us with the best of others.
This is our advice: instead of comparing yourself to others, be inspired by them!
- Being with positive people
Self-confidence depends not only on you but also on the way people look at us and how they act towards us.
If you believe something (whether positive or negative) and other people believe it too, it will reinforce the idea.
So, the people with whom you spend your time can influence your esteem, try to avoid toxic, critical, negative people and focus only on positive, optimistic people who know how to value you.
Here’s some advice: sometimes you can’t avoid meeting negative people but you can limit the time you spend with them.
- Doing things you like
We all have things that we like to do and these things are surely very different for each of us: some will love to play sport, others to play a musical instrument, or to cook. Practicing these activities makes you feel good, in fact, while you do it, time flies. Practicing these activities gives you confidence in yourself, because you are enjoying that time. Choosing activities and finding time to practice them will make you feel better and increase your self-confidence.
Our advice: identify which activities you like to do and find time to practice them!
- Have concrete goals with realistic expectations
To develop self-confidence, you must set yourself concrete and realistic goals that you can achieve. These goals can also be small and so short term that you can even achieve them today, not all goals are long term.
Once you have that goal clearly identified: you must develop a professional competence such as learning a new language, visiting a new country or practicing and working on a new skill.
At this point, you can focus all your efforts on this project, on this objective.
To gain confidence alone makes no sense, because it is not an abstract concept, it must be linked to something and have a concrete goal.
Every time you fulfill and reach an objective you gain an impulse that will lead you to build your confidence in other situations and circumstances.
What advice can we give? Visualize the success of the challenge you want to overcome. Imagine yourself speaking Japanese, or visiting New York, or leading a team of people because you got a promotion.
- Identify your strengths
When our confidence is low we tend to focus on the points where we feel low, where we think we are not good or what we do not know how to do. This strategy of focusing on what we are not good at is not the correct one. No doubt, it will be much more effective to focus on what we’re good at and improve that.
People with self-confidence work on their skills and abilities to improve them and distinguish themselves from the group. You should focus on what you can do and not on what you cannot do.
Our advice on this point: think about something you want to do and think about which part you are good at, what you are best at. For example, if you want to develop your networking, maybe you can do it if you know that you are good at empathizing with others.
- Be flexible and change your mind without fear
How often do you change your mind? Likely more often than you think.
However, when it comes to changing your mind when faced with important decisions, such as: changing jobs, cars, apartments… we find it hard to be more flexible and change our minds.
You feel insecure about the explanations you will have to give, but having an uncomfortable conversation is a small price to pay rather than making a bad decision.
This time our advice is: instead of seeing yourself as insecure and soft, look at yourself as someone who is flexible, open-minded and able to adapt to new contexts.
- Learn to learn
Children learn fast, they see, observe and copy, ask questions, try new things, make mistakes and try again. They have natural confidence in learning!
Sometimes, we limit ourselves to admiring the skills of others without being aware that we can learn them too.
These other people we are referring to do not have innate talent, but have simply invested time and money in developing this new skill.
Our advice: identify your learning style and use all the resources you have at your disposal such as books, specialized magazines, podcasts, e-learning, and Ted Talks.