How to Increase Your Confidence
Your level of confidence can determine your success because it motivates you and
pulls you toward more of what you want in your life. That’s why it is important to
every aspect of your lives, personally and professionally, yet so many people
struggle to find a comfortable level of confidence. People who lack confidence find
it difficult to be successful and I am no exception.
I received very discouraging news that I have advanced osteoarthritis in
both of my knees. I have always been an active person. I played competitive
tennis, jogged six to twelve miles a week, and did Boot Camp or Zumba
classes. When my doctor told me I could no longer exercise in the way I prefer, I was
very frustrated. I lost my confidence in my ability to exercise regularly as one way
of maintaining my healthy lifestyle. It took some time for me to consider the
options my doctor gave me for exercising, which as you can imagine were very
limited options: the elliptical machine or water aerobics!
If you know me, you know I have a lifelong fear of water, and consequently; I can't
swim. My first thoughts----I hate the elliptical machine and I can’t swim. Next
thought…“I am never going to be able to do a water aerobics class. I am not confident
enough to allow myself in deep water.” I am aware of the shallow water
option, but it would defeat the need for less pounding on my knees.
Are you faced with a lack of confidence in some area of your personal or
professional life? If so, you are not alone. We all have felt a lack of confidence at
one time or another in our personal or professional lives. Perhaps my low level of
confidence resonates with you. The good news is your level of confidence can
be improved with focus, determination, and by using the following
confidence building activities! You may find the following seven steps helpful in
almost any situation.
Describe what confidence means to you.
What do you look like and feel like when you have more confidence.
List all of your positive qualities.
List all of the things you are most proud of accomplishing.
List all of the things people most admire about you.
List what you see when you hold up a mirror of self-reflection.
Describe yourself demonstrating a high level of confidence.
Another way I have found to increase and maintain a high of confidence is to use affirmations. Affirmations are positive statements to help you overcome the negative, self-sabotaging thoughts you may be having. This is an indispensable skill I was required to learn in my master coaching certification training. I think of my affirmations the same as the repetitive exercises I perform in my water aerobics classes. I view my affirmations as positive
mental repetitions that reprogram my thought patterns so that over time, I begin to
think and act in a more positive way.
You can start writing your affirmations by reflecting on the ways you answered the
seven questions above and consider all the behaviors you want to change. Write a positive statement in the present tense of how you see yourself after your changes have been made. Writing in the present tense will help you believe that it is already true in your life. The true power of your affirmations lie in its repetition.
Affirmations can be more effective when some element of emotion is applied, so I
prefer to make a recording of mine and I listen to my recording every day. Your
affirmations can be recorded easily on your iPhone. I record my affirmations in a
narrative format, then write positive statements and post them in appropriate spots
to serve as my reminders. After recording your affirmations, do the
following five steps:
Describe how you will use your affirmations.
Write positive reminders to yourself and post sticky notes as reminders.
Determine where will you post your reminders.
What are your actions steps?
When will you get started?
Your negative, self-sabotaging thoughts will continue to surface from time to time
and attempt to limit you and prevent you from feeling confident in your abilities.
Apply the suggested activities when your inner dialog prevents you from
feeling confident and increase your confidence level to achieve more of what you
want, personally and professionally. I personally applied these activities to my fear
of water dilemma and I am well on my way to enjoying my water aerobics class.
Who knows, I may even learn to swim someday.
I hope these exercises help you learn to better live your life with more confidence
and become your own champion by relying on your own strengths, talents, and knowledge. What actions will YOU take today in increasing your level of
confidence? I would love to hear from you!
I wish you days of gratitude, curiosity, and compassion. Let me know how I can