Everyone wants confidence, but few know how to get it. Why is that?
Contrary to popular belief, most people aren’t born with natural confidence. It’s something that everyone struggles with and needs to work toward at some point in their life. The barrier to igniting confidence isn’t a lack of tools though, it's an inability to identify them and an unwillingness to use them.
The Four Pillars of Confidence
You’ve probably heard the expression, “the grass is always greener on the other side.” While it can be difficult to accept where you are in your personal or professional journey, it’s important to recognize and acknowledge that everyone hits a few roadblocks. Don’t be ashamed or let these challenges stop you from being the best version of yourself. We’ve all been there!
If you’re currently struggling with self-confidence, a wonderful book to read is The Confidence Code. In it, Katty Kay and Claire Shipman dive deep into what they consider the four pillars of self-confidence:
- Self-Compassion: Learning how to become your own best friend.
- Self-Esteem: Believing that you are valuable as a person.
- Optimism: Choosing to see the best in a situation, rather than the worst.
- Self-Efficacy: Knowing you have the tools to succeed.
Together, these four elements can help you gain more self-confidence in both your personal and professional life. But how do these pillars come together, and how can you apply them into actionable steps toward confidence?
How to Gain Confidence
The most important thing to remember when working toward self-confidence is that it’s a process that doesn’t happen overnight; it will take time and effort to achieve.
Here are four things you can do to gain more confidence in yourself and your business!
1. Gain Self-Awareness
Judgment and criticism never inspire confidence! Take the time to reflect on your inner thoughts about yourself, and try to obtain a deeper understanding of who you are. Since feelings are often inspired by what you’ve been told by others, it can be easy to feel like you have no control over them. Self-awareness, however, allows you to step into the role of “author” and regain control over your thoughts and feelings.
One way you can take positive steps toward this is by writing your thoughts down in a journal either first thing in the morning or right before bed. Whatever time you choose, take a moment to write down the first 10–15 things that pop into your head. This allows you to clearly visualize your thoughts instead of leaving them in your brain where they can quickly spiral out of control.
Ultimately, self-awareness helps you get to a place of self-compassion, which is essential for confidence. Once you are in-tune with your feelings, you allow yourself to love who you are and what you can become.
2. Know Your Value
How can you expect others to see your worth without seeing it yourself? All too often, we’re conditioned to feel like we’re not enough. One of the most important elements of confidence, however, is having the self-esteem to know your value.
While this may seem challenging, make it a point to find proof of your value every day. For example, maybe you got to work early and had a chance to properly clean your workspace. Or maybe you made someone smile while jamming to your favorite song. Even the tiniest things can reveal how valuable you are as a person. Don’t get caught up in comparing yourself to others when evaluating yourself. Remember, self-worth is a choice!
3. Be Optimistic
Are you a glass half-full or half-empty kind of person? If you’re the latter, consider making active steps toward a more optimistic outlook. While this may initially seem difficult, know that optimism isn’t focusing on the positive to exclude the negative, but rather seeing positive opportunities in challenging situations.
This mindset is a choice though. Most people instinctually hold on to pessimistic views as a survival mechanism. This feeling saved our ancestors from physical dangers like lions, tigers, and bears! But once you understand the difference between being scared and real danger, you’ll allow yourself to see the opportunistic possibilities in difficult circumstances.
4. Gain Knowledge
You’ve heard it before—knowledge is power. This couldn’t be truer when it comes to confidence. Think about a time you felt self-conscious and lacked the confidence to be yourself. Nine times out of ten, it was probably because you didn’t know what you were doing.
Knowledge almost always manifests confidence. But don’t be ashamed if you don’t know as much as you’d like. No one is an expert on anything right away, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have the tools to change that! With resources like Google, YouTube, and social media platforms, you can easily find answers to almost any question. As someone who wants to gain confidence, it’s your job and responsibility to use the tools at your disposal.
Why Confidence is Crucial to Success
Confidence is a crucial aspect of personal and professional success. Without it, you’re left with doubt, fear, and hesitation. Consider the positive outcomes of becoming more confident in yourself and your abilities.
You could become:
- Happier in your place of employment
- A better leader
- More effective in your communications
But perhaps the most important possible outcome from gaining confidence is allowing yourself to be the person you were truly meant to be!
Don’t Put a Timeline On It
Rome wasn’t built in a day. Neither is confidence! Take this journey one step at a time. Keep it simple and stay in the present moment. What can you do today? Who can you become today? These questions can help ignite your confidence and take control of your personal and professional destiny.
Interested in how to create a more positive mindset? Join our community for more tips and tricks to build your confidence to run your business like a boss!