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Are you always on the lookout for new ways to boost your confidence? I spent an evening hunting for the best pieces of advice from the web so you don’t have to! And what’s more? A lot of these are also beneficial to any ongoing recovery efforts! Who knew that gaining confidence could be so good for our mental health?
What does it mean to be confident?
Before I could even comprehend the fact that I, me, could be confident, I needed to find out what exactly it was. It’s not a concept I’m exactly overly familiar with, so I tried to make it as simple to understand as possible.
In short, confidence is feeling sure of yourself and your abilities. It’s not about being arrogant, but rather realistic.
Seems simple, right? In reality confidence is a very difficult thing to master. You can be here for over ninety years and never experience confidence. Which, if you think about it, sounds like a pretty unfulfilled life. So why not take the time to change that? Below are ten simple yet effective ways to help boost your confidence.
10 Ways to Boost your Confidence.
Take time to get to know yourself.
As humans, we’re comfortable in places or around people that are familiar. With that in mind, if you don’t take the time to get to know yourself, then how can you expect to be comfortable? You’ve probably never thought of it that way, have you?
What are your values? Are you aware of your own strengths and talents? Have you a defined purpose in life? Or are you just passing through, enjoying things as they come? While you don’t need to have a clear, set-in-stone list of these things, it’s good to have a rough idea.
Stop caring about other people’s opinions.
I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again.
“Their opinions DON’T pay your bills, honey. “
While we might hear this all the time, it’s easier said than done. So much of our self-worth is based on the opinion of others. But it’s not our fault. Rather, it’s how we’ve been brought up by the world, and generations of people doing the exact same thing. The only way to combat this is to practice the art of “not giving a f**k “.
Spend time doing the things you enjoy.
I spent years running from the creative person I know I am. There were years when I didn’t write anything or sketch. Eventually, I even avoided video games. I did nothing that brought me joy. And then I burnt out. My confidence was at an all-time low and it took years to find the person that I should have been all along.
Spend time wisely. Sit down with your sketchbook or IPad and push past perfectionism. Write until your fingers are sore. If you enjoy running, then use the good weather to your advantage. Too often we get bogged down by the ‘must-do’s of life and we don’t take time to enjoy the things we love.
Accept who you are.
Self-confidence starts with self-acceptance. The sooner we learn to accept who we are, the more our confidence can grow. Much like getting to know ourselves, we need to accept ourselves so we can become comfortable in our own skin. With that comfort, comes confidence!
Do you struggle with self-esteem? Check out this post to learn about different ways you can improve it.
Celebrate all your accomplishments, no matter how small.
Too often we can get caught up in the big accomplishments. Graduating, getting a job, buying a house, getting married, having a baby, or even starting your own business. While all these things are wonderful, they aren’t the be and end-all. You can and should take the time to celebrate your small accomplishments too. Like that time you got out of bed when you really didn’t want to. Or walking to a cafe when you could easily have eaten crisps for lunch. We accomplish so many small things every day that we simply let them pass.
Practice self-care daily!
One of the biggest things we need to unlearn in life is the hussle. We’re constantly being told to go, go, go towards the next goal. I lived with this mentality for years and it did nothing but bring me closer to burnout. Eventually, my body broke down completely, and my mind quickly followed. But now, after years of recovery, I’ve learned the importance of self-care. And not just once in a blue moon; Every damn day!
Challenge yourself and take action.
Life is nice inside our comfort zone. We’re comfortable in spaces, places, and situations where we feel familiar. Living with a chronic illness teaches us that while life is easier in our comfort zones, it’s often stunted. It’s important to challenge ourselves from time to time.
One of the most daunting things we can do is meet new people. Especially having spent the majority of the last twelve months social distancing. But, the internet has made it easier than ever to keep in touch while staying at a safe distance. Whether you’re hanging out with friends on Facebook or signing up to Tik Tok, there are so many ways to get yourself out there. That goes double for dating! With various niche dating sites for things like amputee dating and over 50’s, COVID-19 needn’t get in the way of your love life.
Be more self-aware.
When it comes to being more self-aware, it’s about listening to and understanding yourself. Why do you want to boost your confidence? What attempts have you made in the past, and what works? The more self-aware we are, the better equipped we are to deal with ourselves and others. We’re able to recognise our own flaws and mistakes and work on them. And by default we’re able to grow in the confidence we feel towards ourselves.
Embrace your emotions.
I spent a long time running from my emotions which ultimately led me down a dark path. It wasn’t until I entered recovery that I took the time to not only explore my emotions but understand them. The more we push down and ignore what we’re feeling, the less confident we feel. There is always the fear that the mask will slip. That the you that you present to the world will eventually make themselves known. But if we embrace what we feel and who we are on a daily basis, then the fear disappears. Why? Because the mask is no longer there. You’re not hiding anything from anyone, and isn’t that a much better thought than the former?
Be yourself 100% of the time!
We grow up being told to just be ourselves while also being encouraged to stand in line. Shut up, look like everyone else, and don’t express your thoughts or opinions. And, for goodness sake, don’t draw attention to yourself! We were fed mixed messages at best. But as I approach my thirties I’m no longer hiding behind ‘everyone else.‘ I’m a massive introvert which isn’t helped by my fear of standing out. But I am different from others around me. I think differently, feel differently, have different opinions and ambitions. Life would be boring if we were all exactly the same, so embrace who you are! Whether you’re in your early twenties or hitting fifty, never be afraid to show your true, authentic self. No matter how weird that might be.