When we are confident, we feel safe and relaxed. We feel encouraged to step into new challenges and raise the bar for ourselves, which in turns leads us to learn more and achieve higher results.
Confidence is a cornerstone of resilience, as well as an essential ingredient in our wellbeing, as it shapes how we think and feel about ourselves.
But how do you build more confidence?
And how do you do it in a way that you truly awake that authentic feeling of being confident, bold, self-assured?
The 3 absolute best steps to build more confident mindset and attitude
While I will share more tips and tools in this article, let’s start by saying that the best way to build more self-confidence is by repetitively doing three steps:
- Step into things that make you uncomfortable (could be small things)
- Ensure success in these small things!
- Take a moment after you do it, appreciate and savour this success, and think positively about this experience and it’s outcome
Confidence does not come from “you-can-do-it cheering” or from affirmations such as “I can do this, I can do this”.
True inner confidence comes from many many (small or big) experiences in which we faced something that was scary or uncomfortable, and we felt that we conquered it successfully.
It is build through tackling the current problems in our life, one problem at a time, or actively working on our goals.
Focus on one step or one problem at a time is crucial here – if we feel like the list of problems is long, or that problems are too big for us, we will end up feeling overwhelmed, which does not makes us most resourceful to handle the situation well.
And when we tackle the current one, taking that moment to celebrate and savour that feeling of getting-it-done before jumping into the next challenge is the key to gradually build the confidence up.
Building a track record of small successes by solving problems and achieving small goals often will gradually build sustainable and authentic sense of confidence.
Through tackling goals and challenges actively, but in small steps, you also keep becoming more aware of what skills, resources and capabilities you already have.
That will boost your sense of confidence, but it will also enable you to use these resources more effectively and more deliberately – making you more effective in your actions.
When things don’t go the way you would like them to go, use that as a chance to notice what additional tools and skills you want to develop. Instead of focusing on what didn’t go well, focus on the learning, and use it as an opportunity to define a path to developing these skills, yet again through a set of small, achievable steps.
While this approach is the absolute core and most powerful way of building up authentic confidence, there are quite a few more ways we can make that journey easier and faster.
Here come some more tips and tools.
Practical tips and tools for confidence building
Mental habits that will support your confidence
Build gratitude and appreciation for who you are, what you have, and what you have done
– it will give you a sense of having a lot of resources and in that way make you feel stronger
Clarify your goals – have meaningful goals and clear path towards those goals
– map every small step on the way because that way your focus is on manageable steps about which you can be confident
Monitor/reflect on how you are advancing with your goals
– celebrate small wins, recognize all progress
Give yourself permission to be in a process
– recognize yourself for working on this, and for doing progress – reward the effort as much as result
Reflect on past achievements
Know your strengths and weaknesses
– write a list of things that you are good at and things that you know need improvement – celebrate and develop your strengths and find ways to improve or manage your weaknesses.
Practice confidence by visualizing in
-visualize yourself in a difficult situation, handling it well – it will make you feel like the situation is familiar, and give you idea what behaviours and attitudes would be helpful
– work on optimism, expecting positive outcome and finding positive aspects in different situations
Forgive yourself mistakes and imperfections
– practice the ability to forgive to ourselves when you are not satisfied how you did something – learn to see mistakes and failures like feedback and learning opportunities, which you learn from, but also don’t hold any grudges and blaming towards yourself
Stop comparing yourself to others
Cultivate growth mindset
–recognize possibility of improving with practice, and focus on effort invested and on learning more than the result
Practice presence and mindfulness
– it will help with your emotional regulation, but also make you more relaxed, focused and give you more energy
Talk to yourself in a productive, constructive way
– start noticing the way you talk to yourself and how do different sentences impact your confidence and the way you feel about yourself or about the situation
– start consciously developing habits of speaking to yourself with self-compassion, kindness, and encouragement
Accept compliments and compliment yourself
Pay attention to how you talk ABOUT yourself
–start to be more conscious of the way you talk about yourself and work on it being positive yet authentic
Actively work against self-doubt
– if, as you’re setting goals, you find doubts starting to surface, write them down and challenge them calmly and rationally – if they are based on genuine risks, make sure you set additional goals to manage these appropriately
Habits in behaviour that will support your confidence
When you set goals, immediately do the small first step
Jump into new experiences
–when we go through new experiences often, we become more confident that we can deal with new and unexpected and we are more open to step into more of new experiences
Ask for help and offer your help to others
– share the resources you have and demonstrate to yourself that you are resourceful enough to support others
Get into action mode
– don’t get stuck in overthinking
-do daily exercise of journaling 5 achievements or 5 things i am proud of myself for today
Plan and prepare for specific situations where you wish to be confident
Learn new skills (or practice skills that you choose to focus on)
-notice, recognize and appreciate growth as you are advancing
– keep on standing up for what you believe in and sticking to your principles.
Practice being calm
– while calm is a mindset, it is one that comes from practice – train it through meditation or breathing techniques or calming self-talk
Using body to build confidence
Observe your body language
– start noticing how your posture or open/closed arms make you feel and how they impact your confidence – try changing position of your body and see how that reflected on your confidence and emotions – stand or sit in a power posture (check Amy Cuddy TED talk about power posing)
Build your energy capacity
– high energy level allows us more capacity to deal with challenges, and higher cognitive skills, and with that, more confidence – build capacity of energy by building a cycle between full engagement and full rest (learn more about energy management from webinar recording on Recharge your batteries – strategies for renewing your energy – you can find the link to it on Happiness Academy webinars page)
– exercise is the best mental training of willpower, as well as practice for setting a goal and then conquering it – it also often impacts our posture positively, and feeling of physical strengths, and it builds endorphins and positive emotions, which all contribute to your confidence
Choose your connections
– be conscious who you surround yourself with and how they impact your confidence
Surround yourself with reminders of challenges you achieved and things you are proud of
Leverage your environment to support you in good habits, such as exercise, healthy food, maintaining high energy and positive thinking
I hope you got some good ideas on how to build your confidence – but we are not done yet!
Liked the ideas? Now, it’s action time!
Moment to act: Do you have your next goal set? Are you prepared to conquer it well, and did you split it into the small steps? If not, adjust your plan, and follow steps 1-3 (from the beginning of this article) on your next goal
Moment to reflect: Which of the tips mentioned in this article would be most valuable for you to implement? Choose between 1 and 3 tips, and take a moment to plan how will you do more of this in the following days.
Looking to learn even more?
Would you like to learn how to build a more empowering mindset and therefore open new life opportunities for yourself?
Join us for the 8 lessons for cultivating an empowering mindset online course.