Low self-esteem and lack of confidence will definitely put you on a downward spiral. But don’t despair. These three strategies will help boost your confidence and raise your spirits.
You have strengths that are dependable through your life. In other words, these strengths are always there for you, even if they have lain dormant for a while. This exercise helps you to identify these qualities and make an inventory of them, which you can access in times of crisis when you need a confidence boost.
- Think of times in your past when you have done something you are proud of, even if these seem insignificant.
- List at least three. Next to them list the qualities, or dependable strengths, that they show you possess.
Being self-critical can become a habit. Keeping a three-good-things diary is a way of developing kinder, more helpful ways of thinking. In fact, focusing on positives not only increases confidence, it also improves health.
- Include all kinds of actions and tasks. Avoid dismissive thinking, such as “Anyone could have done that.” Don’t take things for granted, such as “But I had to cook the dinner anyway.” Remember, it is the ordinary, not the extraordinary, you are looking to notice.
- It helps to think how you might describe a good friend who had performed the same action.
Rather than try to push past fears and insecurities when making a change, start small. By making small changes to your behavior, you can begin to test out what your underlying beliefs might be so you can eradicate them.
- Identify one thing you do currently that you would like to change. Ask yourself, “What is that smallest change I can make to that behavior? For example, if you always stay late for work, could you go home on time just one day a week?
- It can help to think about someone who is the opposite of you in terms of the behavior. What would it be like to take one step towards being more like that person?
Use these strategies to feel more confident, and I guarantee you’ll find yourself on an upward spiral.
Source: Psychologies Magazine, April 2013, pp. 64-65.