Ways to Build Confidence and Spark positivity
Posted on 01 February 2017
Confidence is not something that can be learned like a set of rules; confidence is a state of mind. Positive thinking, practice, training, knowledge and talking to other people are all useful ways to help improve or boost your confidence levels.
Confidence comes from feelings of well-being, acceptance of your body and mind (self-esteem) and belief in your own ability, skills and experience.
Planning and Preparation
People often feel less confident about new or potentially difficult situations. Perhaps the most important factor in developing confidence is planning and preparing for the unknown. Knowing what to expect and how and why things are done will add to your awareness and usually make you feel more prepared and ultimately more confident. Learning and gaining knowledge can sometimes make us feel less confident about our abilities to perform roles and tasks, when this happens we need to combine our knowledge with experience. By doing something we have learned a lot about we put theory to practice which develops confidence and adds to the learning and comprehension.
Example: If you are applying for a new job for example, you would be wise to prepare for the interview. Plan what you would want to say in the interview and think about some of the questions that you may be asked. Practice your answers with friends or colleagues and gain their feedback.
There are many other examples of planning for an interview, perhaps you should visit the hairdresser before you go. How are you going to travel to the interview, how long will the journey take? What should you wear? Take control of unknown situations the best you can, break down tasks into smaller sub-tasks and plan as many as you can.
Try to recondition the way you think about your life:
- Know your strengths and weaknesses. Write a list of things that you are good at and things that you know need improvement. Discuss your list with friends and family, inevitably they will be able to add to the list. Celebrate and develop your strengths and find ways to improve or manage your weaknesses.
- We all make mistakes. Don't think of your mistakes as negatives but rather as learning opportunities.
- Accept compliments and compliment yourself. When you receive a compliment from somebody else, thank them and ask for more details; what exactly did they like? Recognise your own achievements and celebrate them by rewarding yourself and telling friends and family about them.
- Use criticism as a learning experience. Everybody sees the world differently, from their own perspective, what works for one person may not work for another. Criticism is just the opinion of somebody else. Be assertive when receiving criticism, don't reply in a defensive way or let criticism lower your self-esteem. Listen to the criticism and make sure that you understand what is being said, use criticism as a way to learn and improve.
- Try to stay generally cheerful and have a positive outlook on life. Only complain or criticise when necessary and when you do, do so in a constructive way. Offer others compliments and congratulate them on their successes.