What is self-confidence? Self-confidence is a feeling of trust in one’s abilities, qualities and judgments. It also describes an internal state made up of what we think and feel about ourselves. This state is changeable according to the situation we are currently in and our responses to events going on around us. It is also influenced by past events and how we remember them; recalling a former success has a very different outcome in terms of our confidence levels than thinking about an occasion when we failed. Confident people inspire confidence in others and gaining the confidence of others is one of the key ways in which a self-confident person finds success. Your level of self-confidence can show in many ways: your behavior, your body language, how you speak, what you say, and so on.
Two main things contribute to self-confidence: self-efficacy and self-esteem. Self-confidence can refer to how we feel about ourselves and our abilities (self-efficacy) whereas self-esteem refers directly to whether or not we appreciate and value ourselves.
We gain a sense of self-efficacy when we see ourselves mastering skills and achieving goals that matter in those skill areas. If we learn and work hard in a particular area, we’ll succeed; and it’s this type of confidence that leads people to accept difficult challenges, and persist in the face of setbacks.
Self-esteem gives more of a general sense that we can cope with what’s going on in our lives, and that we have a right to be happy. Partly, this comes from a feeling that the people around us approve of us, which we may or may not be able to control. However, it also comes from the sense that we are behaving well, that we’re competent at what we do, and that we can compete successfully when we put our minds to it. We are to depend on oneself which creates self-worth.
Eight tips or strategies to developing your self-confidence:
- You have to begin to acknowledge and take note of your own abilities, your strengths, your talents, your virtues – anything that you could see as a positive about yourself is going to enable you to find more trust in yourself.
- Allow yourself to do what you are good at and what comes easily to you.
- Let go of your attachment of finding the right answer and instead find your right answer
- Take risk even if those risks might result in mistakes or failures
- Take responsibility for your choices and consequences of those choices either good or bad.
- Live your life according to a sense of integrity. If you don’t live your life according to integrity, you cannot develop self-trust.
- Acknowledge the ways that you do trust yourself. “I trust myself to __________”
- Listen to your feelings as feelings always have an important message to share. They always have value. Intuition speaks to you via the root of your feelings, that you become convinced that your feelings have ever failed you or are negative in nature.
The reason you don’t trust yourself is because you abandoned yourself. You do this by not listening and not honouring your feelings; you violate your boundaries; you run from your negative emotions.
The holy grail of self-trust is to stop abandoning yourself. The acronym of STAY is Stop Abandoning Yourself. There are two ways to do this. The first way to stop abandoning yourself is to stop running away from your negative emotions. Be with your emotionalism unconditionally regardless of whether they are good or bad. The second step is to create healthy boundaries.
Your boundaries defined by your feelings. Your feelings will always tell you whether a boundary of yours has been violated, no matter what the boundary is.
Questions to ask yourself:
- Do I know what I want?
- Do I let other people tell me what to think or believe or how to feel?
- Do I do things I really don’t want to do and say yes when I really want to say no or say no when I really want to say yes?
- Am I afraid to let people know how I really feel?
- Am I afraid of people thinking negatively of me?
Begin to pay attention to how you feel and honour your emotions which leads to not abandoning yourself.