confidence |ˈkɒnfɪd(ə)ns |
the feeling or belief that one can have faith in or rely on someone or something.
- the state of feeling certain about the truth of something.
- a feeling of self-assurance arising from an appreciation of one’s own abilities or qualities.
Think about it for a second – who portrays your perfect picture of ‘confidence’? What is it about them that makes them confident? It’s likely that said person has a couple of traits, if you may, that make her seem confident. This person radiates happiness and positivity. But allow me to let you in on a secret – these people that are seen as confident, they’re not always 100% confident, they have their bad days too. Some days worse than the others. What’s different about them though, is their mindset.
If you come to see it, most young women and girls – no matter what race, religion, or culture – lack confidence, some a lot more than others. It is not uncommon for them to feel the need to seek validation from other people or to want to be like someone else just to fit in. If you ask me, it’s rather sad actually, seeing all these amazing, wonderful girls busying their lives with self-doubt or what not. I say life is too short to worry about what others think, it’s time to start loving yourself.
As someone who has dealt with self-esteem and confidence issues in the past, I can tell you it isn’t easy. But once you learn to put yourself first, oh you can’t imagine how happy you’ll be. Learning to build your confidence and to love yourself can be a very challenging task, but it’s one of the most important things that one can do. Confidence is like a muscle; the more you use it, the more it grows. It is a skill you can learn. Master it and wear it out on your sleeve for the world to see. I’m going to fill you in on how I built my own self-confidence growing up. Here are the most important steps to help you head in the right direction on your journey of self-growth.
ONE – FOCUS ON THE PRESENT
A lot of us allow ourselves to be held back by our pasts, and this can be very damaging, to say the least. Honestly, what do you get by dwelling on the past? You’re just throwing away the present, literally wasting time by doing so. Accept it and make peace with it, and learn to live in the ‘now’. I spent years of my life lingering over the past. It brought way more harm than it did well, but again, what’s happened has happened and I’ve accepted that. Allow yourself to grow, to learn from your past, don’t let it hold you back from living in the present.
TWO – TEACH YOURSELF TO SMILE
Believe it or not, I never ever used to smile. I was extremely self-conscious, I also just didn’t know how to smile. I didn’t know how to be happy. Sounds odd, but it’s true. Teach yourself to smile more often, all the time. Smile to strangers or to yourself in the mirror. Smiling has this effect, it just automatically lifts your mood and confidence and keeps you from having a bad day. This will automatically bring about happiness, and it’ll leave you feeling great (even if you’ve had a not-so-great day).
THREE – WRITE DOWN YOUR ACHIEVEMENTS
Acknowledge your achievements – no matter how big or small, list out your strengths, write them all down and be proud of yourself because YOU did that. All by yourself. That deserves a little celebration and self-acknowledgment. Think about where you were a week, a month, or even a whole year ago. With self-doubt, it’s easy to ignore your accomplishments and everything positive. Quit beating yourself up, you’re so much better than that. Look how far you’ve come, despite everything.
FOUR – STOP COMPARING
Please. Stop. Comparing. Yourself. To. Other. People. This is one of the worst things to do by far and can be very toxic. Everyone is unique and so so different, so special in their own way. You can never be another person, but you can strive to be the best version of yourself. Someone will always seem prettier, smarter, or whatever else, but they will never be you. Stop comparing yourself to anyone else, you’ll feel and come off as extremely beautiful, just like you are.
FIVE – DON’T BE AFRAID TO FAIL
You can’t always expect life to be all colorful and peachy; failure and setbacks are inevitable. It’s part of the process, part of success. Don’t let the fear of failure hold you back. Instead, accept it and learn from it, and allow yourself to grow. This is all part of creating a great life. Accept the fact that life brings us both highs and lows, and understand that failure is the stepping stone to success. You cannot let failure define you, let it teach you instead. Say goodbye to that self-doubt that’s resting in your head, toss it away. It’s unwelcome. Don’t let it kill your dreams.
“The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.” -Elbert Hubbard
SIX – BE GENTLE TOWARDS YOURSELF
Treat yourself with kindness, love, and patience, like you would a child. You wouldn’t be rude to a child if they’ve made a mistake or if they’re upset about something silly, and you would acknowledge their dreams no matter how big and weird they may seem. Everyone makes mistakes, everyone gets upset and has bad days, everyone has passions and dreams. Don’t be harsh on yourself, no matter the circumstances. Love yourself. Always put yourself and your health first.
Confidence and self-growth is a very vast topic, and I have so much to talk about regarding the matter. For now, however, this should be enough. Self-confidence is a superpower – once you start believing in yourself, the magic will happen. It’s all a mind game. Change your mindset and you will change your life for the better, I promise you this.