We live in a time when we are constantly bombarded with images, ideas and sound bytes that tell us who we should be, could be and ought to be.
They all point to one main message, “You are not enough!”
Unless you live in a cave, you can’t escape their massive barrage, and let’s face it, even from a cave you could probably still get text messages.
It’s enough to make your head spin, and throw even the most self-assured person off center. Add in a few difficult life events – a breakup, a job loss, a pay cut — and you could end up with a Hiroshima to your self-confidence.
Just like training for a marathon and building physical muscles, to be a successful, happy and confident person you must work out your mental and emotional muscles regularly.
You wouldn’t go to the gym to start training your physical muscles the day before a marathon, would you? No way! You’d peril on the pavement. So why would the marathon of your life be any different? It’s not.
Here are 7 self-confidence muscle boosting tips:
1. Stop Worrying About What Others Think and Trust Yourself – You can’t be responsible for how everyone else thinks about how you live your life, so stop worrying about how your family, partner and friends will react to your choices and start getting real about how you feel about your life. Act from what you think is right for you. We always know what the best action is to take for ourselves, when we slow down enough to listen to our inner wisdom. It’s just not always easy to slow down or to trust our intuition. Be committed to trusting yourself, even when it’s scary, and even when others disagree.
2. Become Best Buds with Your Intuition – Inside of you is the best life and decision making compass ever – your intuition. It always communicates what is best for you, but you have to listen, and you have to trust its advice. Just like a best friend, if you’re not calling, it will stop trying to contact you. If you keep asking for advice but don’t take it, it will stop trying to help. Start listening for the communication cues of your intuition – through words you hear, images you see, feelings you have, and things you just know. Act based on what your intuition tells you and you will start to trust yourself more, and build more self-confidence in the process.
3. Know What Makes You Unique – Every person, including you, was born with a set of unique gifts, talents and inclinations that they are naturally good at, more so than the average person. When you find these gifts and use them, your confidence increases. Think Tiger Woods. Born to golf. No matter how much you practiced, you’d never be as great as him; he has a gift. You have gifts too. Ask the people that know you the best, “What are my gifts?” Take notice of the compliments you receive, especially ones you find hard to accept. Make a list of your gifts and start putting time, energy and money there.
4. Know What Makes You Happy – Stop trying to fit into the expectations and ideals that outside forces – society, family, work, friends — have said you ‘should’ be in order to be successful, happy and accepted, and start asking yourself, “What really makes ME happy?” Think about the times that you’ve been happiest. Who were you being? What did you have? What were you doing? Do the same for your most unhappy times. Compare the two to your life today and notice the gaps. Happiness breeds confidence.
5. Have an Opinion and Express Them – Know what you believe and don’t be afraid to express it. Confident people have convictions that come from inside. They know their truth and are willing to stand in it, even when what they have to say makes others uncomfortable. Know your truth in all situations and share it with pride and conviction, knowing that your unique voice deserves to be heard just because you’re you.
6. Never Apologize For Being You – Unfortunately the world is full of people, including our inner mean girls and inner bullies, that want to keep us small, playing along and being ‘good’ girls and boys. When you listen to them by apologizing for who you are, or by discounting your contributions, thoughts and feelings, you squash your self-confidence. Be brilliant. Be you. And never apologize for it.
7. Spend Less Time in the Basement and More Time in the Penthouse – We all have emotional triggers, things that evoke an overly strong feeling and reaction—anxiety, anger, worry, shame, despair, fear—especially during times of stress. Your job is to notice when you have one of these ‘basement’ emotions that erode your confidence, and then to get yourself back up into the ‘penthouse’ where emotions like trust, peace, love, joy and happiness live. Have your hard emotions, just have them and move back on up to the penthouse, where the view of your life is much better!
If you put these into daily practice, you will develop the confidence and conviction that you can do anything… no matter what the outside world is telling you!
Christine is a transformational teacher, speaker and best-selling author. After earning her MBA and climbing the corporate ladder, she chose to devote her life to creating a new reality for women and girls, one based on self-love and true feminine power instead of the relentless pursuit of having to do, be and have it all.
She is the author of two best-selling books, Choosing ME before WE and Madly in Love With Me, The Daring Adventure to Becoming Your Own Best Friend, and the co-founder of Inner Mean Girl Reform School, which has helped over 23,000 women transform their inner critics. She is also the founder of the international Day of Self-Love, February 13th. She is affectionately known as ‘The Queen of Self-Love.’
Christine has been featured on CBS, ABC, FOX, E!, the Huffington Post, and on radio shows and stages around the world, including TEDx. She normally lives in Northern California with her partner, Noah, but recently they sold their house to live their dream of living, working and speaking and teaching from anywhere in the world.To find out more about Christine go to www.ChristineArylo.com and www.ChooseSelfLove.com.