At the core of most successful people there’s self-confidence. This doesn’t mean they were always (or even that they are still always) self-confident. But that they built their self-confidence enough to get them where they are. And that they continue to reinforce it so they can keep going. Don’t miss these 4 simple actions to improve your own self-confidence.
Definition of self-confidence
- a feeling of trust in one’s abilities, qualities, and judgment.
|synonyms:||morale, confidence, self-assurance, assurance, assertiveness, self-reliance, self-possession, composure|
Differences between self-esteem and self-confidence
So that we are all on the same page, let’s start first by understanding the differences between self-esteem and self-confidence, the subject of today’s post.
Self-esteem is the confidence in one’s own worth or abilities. It refers to your self-respect. It’s slightly different from self-confidence in the sense that self-esteem refers to how much I value myself. Example: I deserve/don’t deserve to be successful. Whereas self-confidence refers to how much I believe in myself. Example: I can /can’t reach my goals.
It is useful to recognize that all of us at some point may falter in our conviction and need someone to remind us of our value, be it our families, friends, colleagues or social media followers. Someone who tells you: “you deserve it,” “you are worth it.”
But one thing is to have a moment of weakness and another is to harbor constant doubts about your worth, your knowledge, skills, etc. This is a feeling that fosters anxiety and can prevent you from developing a fulfilling career. So if you suffer from chronic low self-esteem, you may need to consult a specialist such as a therapist or a coach.
Today’s conversation focuses on self-confidence, a state of being that occasionally, even the most successful people also need to reinforce. And the good news is that there are very effective ways to give yourself a shock of self-confidence whenever you need it.
Let’s explore these four self-confidence boosters.
Many experts will recommend that you explore the root of your lack of self-confidence. And looking inside is always a good way to go. But today I suggest that you begin working from the outside in. Starting off with what is generally considered “superficial”. Your appearance.
There are many studies that indicate that clothing affects how we feel. And feeling good is an important step when it comes to building or reinforcing your self-confidence.
Choose a look that suits you well and with which you can connect with the world. That in itself will affect your attitude. It will give you the courage that you may lack to face certain situations or to accept a challenge. Carefully consider every detail of your outfit, including accessories, shoes (and if they are red even better!), Purse, briefcase, or bag, etc.
The same goes for grooming. A good haircut can renew your image and help raise your self-confidence. A little makeup, lipstick, and a good manicure can have a very positive effect on how we face the world. These seemingly superficial changes have a very favorable impact on how we see ourselves and therefore, how we feel. I for one, don’t feel the same when I wear sneakers than when I wear high heels. When I wear sweatpants than when I wear a dress pants. It’s not better or worse, just different. And as different situations call for me to feel and project something specific, I always wear outfits that help me feel my best in that particular situation.
Here's a great post on how to use color to dress for success!
Maybe you heard about certain power postures that send the message of self- empowerment to the brain. Although this research by Amy Cuddy and her colleagues could not get replicated, holding the postures may influence your attitude. Try them every day when you get up and also just before an event in which you want to stand out.
- Hands at the waist, legs separated in superhero style.
- V-shaped arms, legs separated in the style of a sprinter who just won a Gold Medal.
- Standing in front of a desk or table, hands on the table, legs apart, a defiant boss-style look that says: “This is the right thing to do”.
Here are other ideas to explore
Human beings are verbal beings. We are the stories that we tell ourselves and others. The words we use to define ourselves, explain situations, and make sense of life determine who we are and the results we get.
If you want to increase your self-confidence, watch your words and eliminate from your vocabulary those that disempower you. So instead of saying: “I’m not good at this,” you can say: “I choose to take on this challenge and learn what I need to conquer it.” And very concretely, instead of “I can’t speak in public,” you can say: “I will find a coach to help me develop my public speaking skills.”
Getting rid of disempowering words will also help you find new actions that will help you achieve your goals. New actions lead to new results and positive results breed self-confidence. You see, as you repeat this cycle and build on small successes, you will continue to boost your self-esteem.
And keeping with the theme of words, it is very valuable to create a mantra that you can repeat daily. Particularly just before a situation when you are about to get relevant exposure. Some examples:
- I achieve everything that I set my mind to
- I choose to be successful
- I am an excellent negotiator
- I give myself permission to make mistakes and learn from them
- I got this!
I assure you that if you consistently repeat these four actions you will reap the benefits of a strong self-confidence.
And if you are looking to build your self-confidence alongside a community of like-minded professionals, join our Step Up program where we work on all the soft-skills needed to take you to the next level. Get a dose of daily inspiration on Instagram.