Do you appear determined and poised, especially when it matters the most? If not, you are not alone. Unfortunately, low self-esteem afflicts the majority of us. But, there are simple confidence boosters you can adopt immediately to improve your daily interactions positively.
I have always been a shy person while growing up. As a result, I sometimes find it hard to speak up and accept public criticism. I held back from speaking my mind because I wasn’t sure how I would come across. Earlier on, I did consider shyness as part of my personality. But over the years, I have learnt otherwise. Confidence is not a personality trait but can be learned and improved by the daily practice of simple acts.Confidence is not a personality trait but can be learned and improved by the daily practice of simple acts. Click To Tweet
Be bold, and mighty forces will come to your aid.Johannes Von Goethe
Some truths about confidence
- The majority of humans have low self-esteem. According to Dr Joe Rubino’s The self-esteem book, 85 per cent of the world’s population suffers from low self-esteem.
- Confidence is a skill that can be learned and not a personality trait. Next, we will discuss simple measures to increase your self-esteem.
- Self-esteem grows with consistent practice. But, as the sayings go, “practice makes perfect”, and “you can fake it until you make it”.
- You can still develop confidence despite being an introvert. You don’t necessarily have to be loud to exude confidence.
Why do we lose confidence?
Some of the reasons for low self-esteem include the following.
- A troubled upbringing with very critical parents or teachers.
- Poor academic attainment in school.
- Ongoing life stresses such as financial lack, abusive family relationships and divorce.
- Chronic physical or mental illnesses and disabilities.
- Fear of criticism. Many people fear public speaking because they think they will fool themselves by speaking up. They are afraid of being poorly judged by others.
- High self-consciousness. Most people concentrate unduly on their perceived physical inadequacies and judge themselves too harshly.
- Some of us belittle our intelligence by thinking we don’t know enough. We tend to underestimate our intelligence and overestimate the intelligence of others. Some of us belittle our intelligence by thinking that we don't know enough. We tend to underestimate our intelligence and over-estimate the intelligence of others. Click To Tweet
Features of low self-confidence
People with low self-esteem usually display the following:
- Extreme disapproval of themselves
- Belittling their good qualities and overrating their vices
- Judges, others to be superior or intelligent to themselves
- Engages in negative self-talk, such as describing themselves as undeserving of love or stupid.
- Excessive self-blaming when things don’t work out as planned.
- They refuse to take credit for their achievements and attribute too much to luck.
- Refusal to accept genuine compliments and feedback from others, which the fear of criticism may fuel.
- I think essential to feel superb. It all starts with the thinking. Have the convincing belief that you can handle any of life’s challenges. Be willing to learn from your past mistakes and the experiences of others. But don’t dwell in the past. You can also learn from books. Think important to feel superb. It all starts in the thinking. Be willing to learn from your past mistakes and the experiences of others. But, don't dwell in the past. Click To Tweet
- Positive self-talk – use the power of daily affirmations to bolster your confidence. When facing a challenging situation, say to yourself, “I can get through this”, and “I am equal to the task”. Avoid negative self-talk. Show self-respect. Beware of judging yourself harshly when you make a mistake.
- Avoid comparing yourself to others. Instead, compare yourself today to an older version of yourself in the past to gauge your level of self-growth. Realise that everyone is unique. Show self-acceptance—Avoid comparing yourself to others. Instead, compare yourself today to an older version of yourself in the past to gauge your level of self-growth. Realise that everyone is unique. Show self-acceptance. Click To Tweet
- Develop high levels of competence and self-efficacy in your work and studies. As the maxim rightly says, “learn more to earn more”. Being the best in your field of endeavour rapidly boosts your confidence.
- Maintain a good posture when you stand. For example, stand with assurance, throw back your shoulders, and increase your walking pace by 25%. A faster rate increases the efficiency of your heart’s pumping mechanism. Also, practise shaking people’s hands more often and with a good grip.
- Look people in the eyes (where the prevailing culture permits). Express genuine happiness in connecting with and serving others. Learn to smile more. Adopt a broader or “flooding” smile that fully beams into your facial expressions. There are many health benefits of smiling. It is almost impossible to harbour bad feelings while smiling.
- Sit as close to the front as possible when attending a gathering such as meetings. Do not hide away in the back row. Also, do not be shy. Make it a point to always speak up at conferences if you have something deserving to say. You can ask questions or offer your sincere opinion. Don’t be the last person to speak.
- Dress right to feel right. Look important. Constantly groom yourself and always dress well. People form first impressions and opinions about us, rightly or wrongly, by how we look on the outside. When purchasing clothes and other personal effects, go for quality rather than quantity. Aim to spend twice your allocated cost for clothing and buy half the number. Aldo Gucci said that “quality is remembered long after the price is forgotten.” Ten simple confidence-boosters for your success (with Video) Click To Tweet
- Reduce fidgety movements during essential conversations. Avoid fiddling with your nose or playing with your bunch of keys. Avoid the pervasive distractions of your mobile phone. Fidgeting motions and irrelevant hand gestures close to the face can rightly or wrongly portray your listener that you may be lying or unreliable.
- Expand your vocabulary. Speak with an empathetic mood, a cheerful demeanour, and passionate delivery. USA Research has shown a positive correlation between students’ vocabulary in Year 12, their likelihood of college graduation, and their future income level.
Most humans have low self-esteem, but that doesn’t have to apply to you.
Confidence is a skill that can be learned and not a personality trait.
Self-esteem grows with practice. So, practise the measures above daily until you master them.
So, what is your level of self-esteem and confidence? Which of the measures above are you willing to start implementing today to boost your confidence?
I would love to hear your thoughts.
Suppose you have found any points in this post confronting your upbringing, relationships or mental health. In that case, I will urge you to call the relevant Mental Health Hotlines or schedule a consultation with your health care provider for mental health assessment and counselling.
Thanks for your time.