An Approach To Develop More Self-Confidence
Self-Confidence You Can Count On
I don’t know about you, but self-confidence seems to be an illusive, ever changing belief state. I’ve often wondered how we might cultivate a deeper, more constant state of quiet , calm, rock solid self-confidence. Just imagine what we could do with a confidence like 5 months pregnant Rhianna who sang at the recent LVII Super Bowl?
We often think of self-confidence in terms of having a well-developed war chest of extraordinary singing talents, education, emotional intelligence, or skills that we have accumulated in our work, playing sports, or our hobbies, or … how fast we can complete the New York Times online Wordle game! And yet I’m wondering if self-confidence may more solidly be felt in the unconditional love we experience with family and friends. On this Family Day Weekend, we are primed in Canada to celebrate our closest people circles.
If you want to recalibrate your psyche to bring out more self-confidence, you might consider all your family and friends, and realize that they are all reflections of your own strengths and weaknesses. In a quest for core self-confidence, you might reflect on the best and worst traits of your parents, siblings, cousins, and closest friends. I say “best” and “worst” because we need to find a balance point in accepting both the good and not so good in us all. Why not pump up with your accumulated strengths and grow your ability to be open so that you can stay curious about what triggers you?
Shame grows in the shade. Confidence shines through our cracks.
The things we love about those in our close circle of people are likely to be the reflected strengths of ourselves. It is also true that the things that others do or say that drive us a little bonkers at times can also be the growth points for us to heal in our own psyche.
If last week was a little bumpy for you and you seemed to lose confidence in yourself, why don’t you reframe that sense of unease?
A real sense of self-confidence may surface when we reflect on our ability to swim, float, and tolerate conflict. In the uncomfortable weeks when things don’t go our way, we could remind ourselves about our ability to focus on the unconditional and obvious positive regard that we should have for ourselves.
What if everything (that seems tough to bear on the surface) is happening on purpose for a greater good in our personal development?
If you are curious about where you stand regarding confidence, a well-used psychometric tool is the Likert Scale.
Here’s a subjective quick tool, which I have developed to help you consider where you may stand on what I will call the Confidence Richter Scale:
- Write out a list of the top 10 personal qualities you love most about members of your family and/or friends.
- Write out a list of the top 10 personal qualities that really bug you about your family and/or friends.
- Now give each item a score of 0 – 10 regarding how strongly you feel about each point.
- Add up your columns.
If your numbers added up to a relatively even score in both columns on my Confidence Richter Scale, that may be an indicator that you are in perfect balance, celebrating the good, addressing growth points, and embracing you & others’ authentic loveable whole self. You are likely right at home even when facing varying opinions. You have unconditional ease in most situations. You can listen well, communicate with kindness and move through various perspectives. You have the ego strength to take responsibility and face your stumbles. Generally, you usually say “I’ll work on that…” or “Let me think about that more”. You also celebrate your strengths and embrace a compliment. You likely enjoy long term easy friendships.
If your numbers weighed heavier on the negative side of the Confidence Richter Scale, it might be time to build up your confidence muscle with light weights and heavy reps. Just as if you are in a gym beginning a new weight training program, start with managing the small moments of negative talk by writing down the negative inner chatter (about self or other). Then write the positive opposite (about self or other). For example, I’m not great at finances. The positive opposite would be, I am setting up better financial goals this year. A practice you might consider is to notice your negative self-talk… shake the negative thoughts off and reframe to thoughts with compassion and an accountability plan. Thought Field Therapy Tapping is also a great tool to use to change your negative thinking. I love Kristen Neff’s Compassion Meditations for growing the Inner Kindness Muscle.
If your numbers weighed heavier into the positive side of my Confidence Richter Scale, you may want to take off your rose-coloured glasses through which you see yourself. It may be time to practice pivoting into tough conversations to understand the themes that you may be avoiding so that you can engage in more personal growth, facing those themes. You have positive self-talk (which is good) but you may be missing some opportunities to grow and lean into actionable ways you can truly better yourself. True confidence shows up when life is tough. It’s ok to look in the mirror and say “I’m good…I’m really good” but when you face a tough challenge at work with a colleague, you better have some skills in how to stay with tough conversations and seek greater understanding. Otherwise, much of your life, you might feel righteous, but you might find yourself out of work.
What are your favourite ways to build your self-confidence? Please share.
Happy Family Day. EnJOY Your Integrated WHOLE Self.
I like to practice in a safe environment- whether writing a tough letter or playing an instrument. My trusted friends will be both honest and kind in their feedback. It’s constructive and confidence building!
Music is such a gift and a great way to reboot! Being with friends is always the best. Coming out of these pandemic times, it is such a treat to be social again. Wonderful to hear from you. Thanks for reading.. Jo-Anne