Some definitions of confidence:
1.Full trust; belief in the powers, trustworthiness, or reliability of a person or thing: We have every confidence in their ability to succeed.
2.Belief in oneself and one's powers or abilities; self-confidence; self-reliance; assurance: His lack of confidence defeated him.
3.Certitude; assurance: He described the situation with such confidence that the audience believed him completely.
How often do you second guess yourself or lack confidence. Do you easily put full trust in someone else; your mother, husband, teacher or doctor but find it difficult to trust yourself? I love the third definition from above "assurance" what a wonderfully strong characteristic, do you desire it? If you think that you lack confidence, and you probably do because most people do, then I offer a couple suggestions that will direct your attention to building a foundation of confidence in yourself.
Perhaps you are unsure if you lack confidence, if so ask yourself a couple of question to determine your confidence level and the areas where you are submissive and lack trust in yourself.
- Are your choices determined by what you think is right or do you allow your behavior to be governed by the attitude and expectations of other people?
- Do you take risks or prefer to stay within your comfort zone in fear of failure?
- Do you admit your own mistakes and learn from them or cover them up in embarrassment with the hope that it will just disappear?
- Do you accept "thank-yous" and acknowledge your achievements or brush them off trying to convince that anyone could have done what you did?
What do you think? Do you lack confidence?
From the question list above which ones describe your behavior? Perhaps several? What situations encourage that behavior? Let's say you consider yourself a fairly confident person but when ever you are around your mother-in law you hide your opinions and have a tendency to agree with everything she says. When we look at this situation the lack of confidence is within a specific relationship. Perhaps this is due to you being afraid your husband's mum might not accept you and over the years this lack of confidence has become a habit to avoid confrontation. Now, if you allow this to continue your relationship will eventually die out or blow up. So what do you do?
First, it is important to understand that the key is to build confidence in yourself and not in others, believe that you are someone your mother-in law will love for who you are. When someone places all their confidence in another person or other things they will always compare themselves to it and judge themselves by their standards. This does not bring joy. Sometimes developing confidence in your self can be a journey of self discovery. You must acknowledge that you have a voice and that you are the only one who can vocalize it. Great things do not come from people who don't believe in themselves.
So, start from the beginning: What are your beliefs? What in life is most important to you? What do you really enjoy? What really irritates you and why?
It can be really helpful to keep a journal that records your feelings and emotions, often interpreting emotions into words can help you realize your true feelings. Once you have decided your values and beliefs, claim them. As you live and experience more of life's experiences these values and beliefs will change and that is OK.
If you really struggle will embracing your own values and beliefs the use of affirmations can really help. Make an affirmation about something you want to gain more confidence in, for example:
- I am smart
- I am a person who succeeds
- I am beautiful
- I am healthy
- I am patient
- I am a likable person
- Talking to new people is easy
When making an affirmation it's important to remember that the more assertive and positive the affirmation, the better. Now, say you tell yourself "I am patient" and one day you loose your temper do not let it ruin your confidence. Everyone makes mistakes, don't dwell on the mistake just focus on your progress; the times you are patient. Saying affirmations daily is crucial in developing your confidence, also write them on notes and place them in place where you will read them frequently.
Acknowledge the areas in your life where you lack confidence and be active in regaining your confidence. This is done by setting goals. Don't make your goals impossible, make them achievable. Give yourself a deadline; if there is a time duration attached to your goal you are more likely to achieve it.
There is the saying "you are only as good as your company" embrace this statement. Surround yourself with positive people that have confidence in themselves or are striving to build self-confidence. Positive friends will offer optimism in challenging times.
Confidence is so essential to happiness. You have the potential to do great things and the only person who can determine that is YOU!