Sunday, 10 January 2010

How to Create Confidence


Image thanks to faithful chant

“I was once afraid of people saying, ‘Who does she think she is?’ Now I have the courage to stand and say, ‘This is who I am.’” 
Oprah Winfrey

Confidence is so integral to life; your successes, your failings, your best and worst moments, they all come down to how you're feeling about yourself and how happy you are projecting that self outward. We’ve already alerted consciousness within ourselves, now we need to spark confidence in what we have uncovered. You have the right to believe in yourself; you have the right to believe in your own opinions, so why aren’t you asserting that confidently and consistently?

Although you should strive to understand why you may not be effectively asserting yourself, don’t blame yourself when you do lack confidence: self-blame will only drag you down further. You’re a one man team; you should be on your own side!

I think a key to great confidence is understanding that feeling inadequate now and then is okay. Once we’ve accepted that, when it occurs, it doesn’t swamp us with any real, lasting doubt in ourselves; we simply realise that a dip in confidence is completely natural in the humble path to glory!

I was watching a documentary about Elvis the other night, and he was in the peak of the Vegas period of his career. He was about to go on stage and, without directly quoting him, he said something along the lines of ‘I still get nervous. I wonder... will they like me?’ He sounded so in earnest that I thought: by Jove! Elvis worried about that kind of thing too?!

It was a real revelation, I suddenly thought, if Elvis can have lapses in self-belief, one of the most beloved performers in the history of mankind, then it’s surely okay that I have them too, and it needn’t impact one iota on the level of success I can achieve.

Summary:

♥ You have the right to believe in and assert yourself
♥ Don’t let natural lapses in confidence drag you down further than necessary
♥ Like Elvis, dips in confidence needn’t impact on your level of success

Homework:

♥ Understand and envisage your confident self

Think about why you want to be more confident, and what that will look like. Confidence is, of course, a trait that has to be put into practice rather than simply worked out on paper. However, committing yourself to paper, and making yourself accountable and aware of your desires in hard copy, provides not only clarity on what confidence means to you, but is a reference point to call upon in those real-life moments where you are tested.

So, what does confidence mean to you? To me it means:

♥ Drawing people into and holding them in conversation
♥ Building new friendships all the time
♥ Progressing in my career

In real situations, this will be realised by:

♥ Feeling justified in sharing my opinions, but able to take other opinions on board
♥ Being assertive in arranging social activities, even with new friends
♥ Talking happily about my career plans, without putting myself down

Once you’ve got these points, think about the physical actions that will assist you in realising them: holding eye contact instead of looking down, smiling, standing tall with a straight posture, speaking slowly, clearly and purposefully, being comfortable with listening and sometimes staying silent, and controlling your breathing. When you really begin to realise that you are a strong, justified and significant human being, these things will come more naturally.

I will now keep these points in my mind all the time, so that when an opportunity to benefit from confidence occurs, I know how and why I should rise to the challenge, and I will actively create confidence in myself.

Do you suffer from low confidence? How important is creating confidence to you?

P.S. Sorry this has arrived a little late in the day, I will be endeavouring to get the articles posted much earlier as of tomorrow.

3 comments:

Sara said...

I really need to think this over and work on it. Self esteem and confidence seem to be such an issue for young women this generation. I figure I'll get there eventually! Thanks for this! x

ps having a little vintage giveaway on my blog, if you fancy it x

Rosie Unknown said...

This is such a helpful post, I am super confident once I get to know people, but I am shy near new people.

Tiffany said...

I can't believe I just discovered this now.
Thank you for that breath of fresh air, I'm printing this out as a daily mantra to better believe in myself.

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