Believing in yourself is the pinnacle of strength, the so-called inner strength. While you may not see instant results, you also shouldn’t look at self-confidence as a goal. It’s more of an addition to your arsenal of capabilities. Think of it as a tool and as an investment in your future.
Self-confident people don’t define the situation as wins and losses. Instead, they learn from their challenges. This sort of investment allows them to learn even more and reach their goals much easier.
Young people have a problem with a “today only” mentality. If you think a little more about the future, you will see why believing in yourself should be #1, #2 and #3 on your daily agenda. The key is organizing yourself and limiting uncomfortable situations. It’s much easier than most people think.
In this article, let’s analyze the elements of self-confidence and help you become a better person in every way.
Self-acceptance is the key
Steven Hayes, Ph.D. University of Nevada, has developed a very new perspective for self-acceptance seekers. Before you begin this journey, you have to analyze where you are currently. The road to self-confidence is a rocky one, and you have to be honest to yourself before making any move.
Think of it as creating a map. A trustworthy map of your character will bring you one step closer to believing in yourself.
The term we want you to focus on is your “current state.” Know where you are. Think about what you want to change and how you want to change those weak spots. A key component in self-confidence is self-acceptance. No, you’re most likely not perfect, but you have a basis for improvement.
Improvements depend solely on your will to change yourself. So, how can you learn to accept yourself? Noticing, concluding and recording are the three keys to achieve this.
No matter how bad or unsatisfactory your current state is, you already made a step that most people are unwilling to. But how can you achieve self-acceptance? The most efficient way lies in these three keywords – think, conclude and record.
- Noticing which situations make your self-confidence rise is the first step. Upon noticing this, you should expand your thought process and write down ten different situations that make you feel good. Keep in mind that you don’t have to do it right away – take as much time as you need.
- For example, a friend of mine from college played basketball. He realized giving 100% effort on the court made him feel better about himself. He set a goal for each game and, gradually, he believed in himself like never before.
- After writing these situations down, think about why are you good at them? What is the key to your consistent stellar performance? Write down two reasons for every listed situation, without exceptions. An action like this one allows you to follow the road from being a novice to being a profession in a certain area or situation.
- Now, it’s time to focus on your weak points. Notice which situations you often try to avoid. Pinpoint the exact requirements that you want to cheat through and in which you keep failing all the time. Remember them vividly and recall the way you felt at that point.
- Write down ten of those situations, but with a twist – think about how often each one happens in your life. Make a list that goes from most frequent situation to the least frequent of them all. By doing this, you’re making an assault plan directed at your bad habits and weak points.
- For each of those situations, think what can you do to improve upon them. Don’t think of the reasons why they happened, don’t think of the past at all. Be focused on the future – dwelling in the past is not connected to self-acceptance. Accepting yourself is knowing who you are right now, BUT also knowing that you can easily change that with the tools at your disposal. And the best tool is planning.
Focusing on your plans
Charles D Kerns, Ph.D, MBA, believes that a positive psychological approach to goal management produces better results. Positive psychology helps you focus more and overcome distractions.
Belief in yourself is nothing but fooling your brain. By coming out victorious time and time again, your mind will stop generating negative thoughts. Why? Because it has a lot of proof that says otherwise.
Creating that feeling over and over again is possible if you’re consistent. The first step to take is to record everything you accomplish on a daily basis. Structure everything in the form of a list.
To be truly self-confident, you need to invest a lot of time and effort into tricking yourself. At one point, your brain will give up and start believing in itself. How exactly can you start with planning? Excellent question, let’s dissect some basic points:
How can you make planning your ally
- Start with a daily schedule. Don’t leave the most important things for you unplanned. The rest can go spontanous but the core should be structured to give you the essential piece of mind. To start believing in yourself, you need to make it as difficult as possible for things to become unexpected. Expecting something will make it much easier for you to snatch a victory. That’s what planning is all about.
- When forming any plan or schedule, have a hierarchy of tasks. Place the most important ones at the top of your plan. Next, add the less important plans and meetings. The third place on your list is for things that might happen. Potential hangouts, study dates, unclear plans, and everything should be in this part of the plan. The final group should be optional things – plans and activities that you can accomplish only if you finish everything.
- You should also have a weekly schedule. Like with the daily one, insert the most important things first and then the less important and optional ones. Because there will be more things to do, make it tidy and format it correctly. The key thing about weekly plans is – you won’t accomplish everything. Just do your best and don’t stress out so much. According to researcher Shawn Achor, it’s not the work alone that can make us happy. We need to focus on things that make us happy.
- Reflection sessions are also indubitably crucial. After every day, take a look how much you’ve accomplished. By visualizing where you were in the morning and where you are now, you will feel stronger. Upon feeling it, you will know how much you can do and the next day will seem much easier. Do it also for weekly, monthly and yearly plans.
Using the resources at your disposal
Many people tend to confuse believing in yourself with doing everything on your own. While you might be inclined to accomplish many things by yourself, you must not become too self-dependent.
Knowing that you can accomplish something without help doesn’t have to result in rejecting help. Sometimes, you aren’t required to depend solely on yourself, and that’s okay.
Accepting yourself also means accepting your lack of power. Just be honest with yourself and realize that you will need help from time to time. Letting others help you also gives you an opportunity to practice your cooperation skills.
Why is this so important? Being aware that you are not all-powerful diminishes the stress you feel, as well as making your difficult goals seem like normal goals. The feeling, in the end, will be the same – success!
By realizing that it’s okay to ask for help, you will liberate yourself from expectations. Expectations are like weights that hold you down. Once you get free from it, you will be able to make a place for plans and dreams. Expectations are not required or obligated – just achievable because you know they are.
Nobody is alone
Even the most famous celebrities have struggled with self-confidence problems. Justin Bieber, for instance, has faced this problem in the last few years. He got famous so fast, he started expecting too much of himself, and he kept failing to meet his expectations.
As a result of such a way of life, Justin struggled with believing in himself. Taking it easy, keeping faith, planning and talking to his loved ones helped him mature and gain more self-confidence.
Emma Watson also had the same issue – she struggled to be who she is because of the image the public had of her. After years of non-stop exposure, Emma was desperate to chase after other people’s expectations. Only after she started making plans for herself, her belief and self-acceptance rose to a high level.
Everyone has moments when belief in oneself is hard to come by. Being patient, planning and accepting who you are, will allow you to face the challenges with great audacity.
Believing in yourself is not a race by any means. Instead, it’s a walk that you go on by yourself. Accept who you are, and you’ll know from where to start your road to improvement. Fixing what doesn’t work and improving what does, will help you reach the level you want. Remember that you are not alone and that the most important ingredient of belief in yourself is consistency. Give your mind enough proof that you are capable and negative thoughts will be a thing of the past.