Self-Confidence With These 5 Tips

Have you ever marveled at how some people turn heads simply by entering a room?

Or at how easily some people set boundaries and stand firm? 

Or at how others freely speak their mind without the worry of judgment?

These are all examples of real self-confidence, and in today’s episode, I am talking about what self-confidence is, where it comes from, what cuts it down, and five simple ways you can build more self-confidence. 

Many people think we are either born with confidence or we aren’t. While we are born extroverted or introverted, no matter how you interact in the world, self-confidence is something you can build, and we can always build more of it.

Prefer the audio? Listen here.

What is Self-Confidence and Where Does It Come From?

Self-confidence is the feeling of knowing you can handle your life. No matter what happens, you have faith you will figure it out. 

When you are self-confident, you are informed by fear, rather than driven by fear.  

While we should respect our fears (they often have something valuable to teach us), we do not want to let fear drive our life. 

You might let fear take over if you wait to see how other people receive what you say, if you have the disease to please, or if you always seek external validation. This is the opposite of self-confidence. 

Self-confidence says, do I approve of what I am doing? Of how I am being? Of what I am doing in my relationship? Of the decisions I’m making?

When you are self-confident, you believe how you think, how you feel, and what you want matters to you more than what anyone else wants, thinks, and feels. 

Self-confidence also looks like saying “yes” or “no” and taking responsibility for your choices. You know you can change your mind later, and you are willing to pursue what you want. 

The opposite of this is getting stuck in analysis paralysis. When we are paralyzed by indecision, a decision is often inevitably made for us because we dragged our feet on it. This helps us avoid taking responsibility.

Ultimately, self-confidence comes from a deep-seated feeling of knowing you will be okay.

We have all been through hell and back in this life. I cannot imagine anyone who has not experienced sad and horrible things. And, if you are reading this, you have survived 100% of every horrible experience. 

Hopefully, knowing this creates a sense of self-confidence for you. You are not either born with it or not. You can develop it. (Download the free guide for five tips on how to cultivate a greater sense of self-confidence.)

What Negatively Impacts Our Self-Confidence?

Before we get into how to build self-confidence, let’s explore a big reason why some of us have less self-confidence: 

Disordered boundaries. 

Your self-confidence gas tank runs on empty when you don’t express your preferences, limits, desires, or deal-breakers.

Maybe you fear conflict. Maybe you are afraid of rejection. Maybe, growing up, you learned children should be seen and not heard. Something made you believe it is better to go under the radar than it is to stand up and be counted. 

But I promise you, a life spent not standing up and being counted creates a life filled with resentment. 

What About Imposter Syndrome?

Many of you have written to me concerned about occasionally experiencing imposter syndrome. 

If you get a new, big job, having moments of, “Wow, can I really do this job? Are you sure this job is for me? Are you sure they meant to choose me?” is normal. 

The actual definition of imposter syndrome is: “a persistent inability to believe that one’s success is deserved or has been legitimately achieved from one’s own efforts and skills.”

Most people who write to me do not persistently experience imposter syndrome. 

By the way, you can experience these moments of doubt at different points in your life and still be legitimately confident. These are just moments, and this is how fear presents itself. 

5 Things to Boost Your Self-Confidence

Let’s move into the five strategies you can use to build your self-confidence. 

  1. Set Small Goals

Self-confidence is knowing ourselves, knowing we are okay, and knowing if we say we will do something, we can count on ourselves to do it. 

Nothing diminishes our confidence as quickly as making promises to ourselves and breaking them. 

Instead, set small, achievable goals for yourself. Following through on these goals will build confidence. The key is choosing an achievable goal. 

Think about what habits negatively impact your life, and slowly bring in new or better habits. 

Here are some ideas to get you started: 

  • Walk 10 minutes a day for the next 30 days
  • Declutter a room or an area in your house (especially if it is bothering you)
  • Create a zen den – a sacred space – where you can journal, meditate, or read spiritual texts
  • Set alarms throughout the day to remind yourself to breathe and take a break
  • Increase the amount of water you drink if you are not getting enough

To help you follow through, invite a friend or family member to be your accountability partner and check in with them on your progress. 

  1. Become Solution-Focused

We all have complaints, but building self-confidence is not about ruminating on what is wrong or what is bad in your life

Instead, I invite you to make a commitment to come up with at least one solution to any complaint you have, if it is something you can take action on. 

  1. Set Yourself Up For Success

Confidence is about setting yourself up to succeed. Preparing can help us feel confident about executing a plan. 

Give yourself time and space to be prepared for whatever your day holds. 

Often, a lack of self-confidence comes from a lack of planning. Rushing around and barely getting to where you need to be on time does not breed confidence. 

Consistently being late actually puts you in a one-down position because you start a meeting or relationship with an apology for being late, which does not feel good. 

Being on time may be challenging for you. For example, if you are ADHD, it might feel impossible. But you can plan for it and do your best to let people know. If I found it difficult to be on time, I would have my team schedule my meetings in my calendar 15 minutes ahead of when they actually begin. 

I do not know the right thing to do because I do not have ADHD, but I encourage you to figure out how to make being on time less challenging for you. 

  1. Create a Brag Book of Your Accomplishments

When you think about what you have achieved, what are you proud of? Write a list or document these achievements in a book. 

It can be helpful to have data to remind us we are capable, especially when imposter syndrome strikes.

  1. Feel All of Your Feelings

No matter how much I achieve, doing something for the first time still provokes anxiety. Whether it is writing a book, giving a talk to lots of people, or doing TV shows, part of me is afraid to fail or afraid I am not good enough.

But I create space for this fear because it is part of the human condition. 

Uncomfortable feelings, fear of failure, and allowing ourselves to fail are part of succeeding. If you only want to feel comfortable or good, your life will likely be smaller than you want it to be. 

“Failure” is not black and white, either.

Sometimes it is trying something and realizing it is not for you. This does not make you a failure. I have changed careers multiple times. Does that mean my career as a talent agent is not valid? No. It simply means it was time for me to move on. 

Sometimes succeeding is failing and realizing you are okay. You can have hard conversations. You can advocate for your needs. You can make difficult choices. 

Give yourself grace when you make mistakes, because it takes courage to try. Confidence is built in our ability to do and try new things and come through for ourselves. These experiences are woven into the unique and beautiful tapestry of your life. 

All of the ideas I have for building more self-confidence are in the guide, which you can download here. Let me know which ones you try or if you have any I did not include in the comments, or over on Instagram (@terricole).

Have a wonderful week boosting your self-confidence and as always, take care of you.

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