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The pieces of the self-confidence jigsaw
What comes to mind when we talk about ‘confidence’? The person who speaks first and longest at the office meeting? Your friend who always seems so sure of their opinions? The family member who is completely comfortable in their own skin and radiates positive, charismatic energy?
Confidence is not something that can be learned like a set of rules; confidence is a state of mind. Confidence is about taking action, taking control. Confidence comes from feelings of well-being, acceptance of your body and mind (self-esteem) and belief in your own ability, skills and experience.
So, ‘why can’t I be like that’?
You can influence your future. Building your confidence is like assembling the pieces of a jigsaw.
The 5 pieces of the self-confidence jigsaw:
- Your Mindset & Beliefs
“If you think you can or think you can’t – you’re right” – Henry Ford
Confident people have positive beliefs and are optimistic about the situations they encounter.
Many of us can beat ourselves up for our mistakes and failings and allow our fears and worries to overwhelm us. It’s important for us to know that it’s OK to make mistakes. We learn from this. Believe that there are plenty of people who want to know what you know and be where you are.
You can train your mind to develop positive, constructive beliefs and a rugged sense of confidence.
- Your Goals
Confident people have goals – they know what they want to achieve in life. They know when to work hard and when to conserve their energies to achieve their goals. People who don’t have goals tend to drift in their lives and allow their circumstances to dent their confidence.
Why not start by choosing a goal to create a fun, meaningful, compelling life journey. If it doesn’t work out first time, change it! You are not confined to your own rules.
- Your Behaviour
To learn to do something new, we need to recognise how we FEEL about it. We need to decide what we THINK and know, then we need to try and DO something differently.
When we interact with others, we have an immediate feeling; we experience an emotion. Almost at the same time, we have a thought about it. As a result of this, we act very quickly. We learn that a behaviour produces a result and a becomes part of our memory.
Doing something new or differently means making or modifying our memory. This means changing how we feel, changing what we know and the changing what we do.
The confidence cycle (do, think, feel) tells us that if you behave confidently, you can help yourself to think and feel more confident about yourself.
- Your Resilience
Confident people bounce back from setbacks and rejection, adversity and criticism.
To improve your resilience, recognise the four basic ingredients:
- Awareness – noticing what is going on around you and inside and your head
- Thinking – being able to interpret the events that are going on in a rational way
- Reaching out – how we call upon others to help us meet the challenges that we face; because resilience is also about knowing when to ask for help
- Fitness – our mental and physical ability to cope with the challenges without becoming ill
Even if you can’t always control everything that happens to you…you can always control how you choose to respond.
- Your Ways To Keep Going
Growing your confidence is a marathon, not a sprint. Find your own ways to continuously build upon yours. Why not strike up a random conversation with a stranger or dance ridiculously in public? Try not to shrink in the face of criticism. Take a balanced view of your achievements and celebrate your successes …no matter how small or big they may be!
‘Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.’ – Helen Keller, Author, political activist and lecturer. The first deaf and blind person to earn a BA degree in the US.