Accepting the human condition and coping with it (Installment 3)
This post is part of a series.
From my understanding, self assurance is so deeply rooted in our experiences and it can take years to change our natural patterns. You cannot expect to build confidence overnight, but here are five foundational practices that can make it possible in the long-run.
1. Love Learning
If you approach all situations with a genuine desire and interest for learning, there is no option for failure. Regardless of the outcome, you will have learned something that you can use in your life.
The reality is that you are not going to be the best in the world at anything (most likely), but you can be better than you were before. Focusing on this evolution is motivating, because it is achievable.
2. Take Ownership
Once you believe you can handle the outcome, good or bad, you will have the strength to move forward in the first place.
Mistakes are going to be made, so you need to find a way to accept your past choices and let them go.
One method for acceptance is by taking ownership of your flaws, instead of seeing them as your dirty little secrets. As you step forward and take responsibility for your actions, you will learn resilience.
Later, when you go to approach a hard situation, you can think back on all of these moments and realize that you survived them all. Once you believe you can handle the outcome, good or bad, you will have the strength to move forward in the first place.
3. Make Time for Strengths
In the self-help culture of today, lots of energy is put towards “improvement”-- where we focus on understanding our weaknesses and study up on how to overcome them. Not only is this a lot of time spent on things you’re naturally bad at instead of maximizing your competitive advantage, it is also a constant reminder of your failures.
This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t recognize your weaknesses and give them attention. You just shouldn’t spend all of your time on these.
Allow yourself to spend time on activities you excel at. You deserve to experience accomplishment. This can help build up your feelings of self-worth over time, arming you to deal with new challenges.
(Side benefit: Strength alignment is what will ultimately make you successful.)
4. Focus on Others
Think of people who we perceive as confident. They are not the people who are consistently pointing to themselves.
It feels counterintuitive, but focusing on others shows that you are satisfied with yourself. Over time, you will start to be.
There is also another piece to this. When you’re focused on others, you’re not focused on yourself. You have less time to pick yourself apart.
5. Find a Champion
Despite all your best efforts, you’re still going to have some down days. Find someone in this world who listens to you, empathizes with you, and believes in you.
You might be rolling your eyes, because who doesn’t want this type of support? And finding someone is easier said than done.
The best advice I can give for getting this type of support in your life is by giving it to others. How can you expect from others what you don’t give yourself?
There is no silver bullet to having confidence. Confident people feel many of the same disheartening emotions as unconfident people, but they have found a way to believe in themselves despite those fears.
They consistently make decisions based on the belief that they are capable of good outcomes, and they don’t let their feelings alter their path.
Is your lack of confidence holding you back? Speak with a Confia coach today!