Art Expo Sydney 2011
So how do you build self confidence? Particularly when you need to have confidence when you're running your own business...
Self confidence is one of the greatest attributes that you can have.
Building confidence so you can run your business is not as difficult as it may sound.
True self-confidence isn't an overnight achievement. It takes lots of practice and dedication to build the foundations of confidence. And that becomes easier once you realise that you are a great person, and that you deserve self respect, love, and respect from your peers.
In some of our other blog postings we've talked about "Confidence and Competence".
Here are several ways to build your confidence by focusing on your competence:
- Learning-Do courses or attend business seminars to help you build your business.
- Research-Do regular research, like surfing the Internet and gain business knowledge. You can also join online business networks to get advice from industry experts.
- Hire Experts-Get experts (like a business coach or a mentor) to help and guide you as you learn and grow your business.
- Competency- Commit to learn something new, and if you willing to learn and apply what you learnt you will become competent as all the knowledge and experiences you gained will give you the confidence and competence to run your business.
True confidence comes from within you, from how you see yourself, and you feel about yourself.
Here are some tips you can use to build confidence in YOURSELF:
- Acknowledge your insecurities - recognising your insecurities is the first step to build your self confidence. Be aware of your head chatter. What does it says in the back of your mind? What makes you feel uneasy, nervous or ashamed of who you are? These feelings could be anything from negative childhood experiences, to identity crisis. For me it was always the acne scars. How I learnt to accept who I am today was by asking myself why do I feel like this, and did people see me like I see myself? We can be so self critical while most of the time people around us are accepting of who we are. It's us who can't accept ourselves. I used to write a list and work through them one by one by looking at the negatives and the positives of each issue. From the list select the top three that you think it will transform your life and will help you build your confidence. The next step is to confront it and to turn the situation from uneasy to comfortable. Do not skip to the next issue till you are happy with the results, and feel comfortable with it. During the process if you are feeling down in the dumps and insecure, write down all your positive traits and read them out loud. Even better, stand in front of the mirror. This feedback will reinforce your positive out look and help you to realise how good you are as an individual and what you have achieved. The results might even surprise you.
- Tell Someone - The best way to deal with this issue is to share and tell some one about it. Tell when you are ready. Let you family and your friends know, tell them how you feel and ask for their help and support. In my situation at first it was very hard to tell my family and friends about how I felt about my acne scars. I was very embarrassed and felt ashamed. I was at a stage where it consumed me and my confidence was getting worse. I could not even look at the mirror at all. Now, because I had decided to move forward with my life and to be happy again, I needed to resolve this issue before I could even move on the next. Keep in mind that this doesn't always mean that you have to get rid of whatever makes you feel uncomfortable (and I can tell you that sometimes, you just simply can't). What you can do is to learn to accept who you are, and your circumstances, without the negative head chatter. Be comfortable with who you are.
- That's life embrace it - We are not born perfect. We are on earth to learn and to grow, so learn to accept and embrace the fact that life can be sometimes be a struggle. Even some successful people you know went through difficult times in their lives. The difference is they won't give up till they get where they want to be. The same goes for your confidence too. You need to build it up and allow yourself to feel those insecure feelings. They come and go depending on how you feel and your mood swings at the time too. Seeking perfection will freeze you from growing and exploring. If you aim for perfection you will never be happy or accepting who you are. It can also stop you moving forward to achieve your goals and dreams.
- Identify your strengths - We all have something we are good at. if you ask people you know to identify your strengths, they'll tell us things that sometimes we don't recognise it in ourselves. So explore your talents and follow your passions. Knowing your passion will give you the desire to find your inner strength. Find something you like to do and enjoy doing. If you still not sure about your strength, your family or friends can help you define your strengths. We are all born with talents and strengths, all you need is to identify them, nurture them, and you'll shine. Another way to define your strengths is to think about activities other people do that you would like to try out. You can join a community group or enrol in courses or workshops to fine tune your strengths. Engaging in doing things you like or participating in various interests will help your build your self confidence.
- Cause and Effect which one are you? - Being the "Cause" means you are not playing the victim ,and you are taking full responsibility in your own hands. You build confidence by owning the situation and being willing to fight and excel. If you choose to be in "Effect" on the other hand, it means you are playing the victim, “the poor me” and letting people around you to feel sorry for you. Playing a victim will never move you forward to where you intend to be. Your confidence with be in the reverse and it will set you back as you let everything around you consume you and eat you up.
- Be Grateful for what you have - Acknowledging and appreciating what you do have right now. We need to be real and appreciate our lives and what we have and take a holistic approach by thinking about the world as a whole. Sometimes we go off track and start complaining about things that bother us or wanting a lifestyle that we can’t have. So sit back and be the observer. Did you know our life is as wealthy and precious beyond compare? Have you ever thought of making a small list of some of our overlooked privileges and things in our life we take for granted? Also Finding that inner peace in you will also help you see clearly and boost your confidence.
- Positive Mindset is the way to be. Keep positive. Focus on the good things in life. Talk positively and choose positive words that make you feel good about yourself. If you keep doing this the negative vibes will gradually fade away. We know our minds will wander and the negative head chatter will kick in, just acknowledge it, and give yourself time out to re frame your thinking. Trash the self pity and avoid vulnerability otherwise people see you as a victim and they will treat you like one too. How you present yourself is how people will perceive you. If you present yourself positively and talk about your bright future, you will inspire people along the way. This positive behaviour will reinforce in yourself and continue to help you build self confidence.
- Act & Be Confident Now! - The best way to build confident is to act like one. So who is your idol? who is the person you would think of first when it come to confident & competent? Do you have someone you look up to? Act confident might actually make you believe that you are, remember practice makes perfect, try is next time and go through the motions and see how you feel! So act now!.
- Look in the mirror and Smile - I know it sounds vain, but what is it that you are not comfortable looking at in the mirror? I used to avoid looking at the mirror so I don't have to see my acne scars. I built up such a complex that I would not like to see my own reflection. I was thankful to a dear friend of mine who helped me to accept who I am and be comfortable with myself. I clearly remembered she gave me a poem and got me to stand in front of the mirror, look at myself, and recite the poem. At first it was so hard to do, but after I did the routine for several weeks, I started to feel much more comfortable looking at myself and accepting the acne scars as part of who I am. So looking at the mirror and smiling everyday will make you feel happier with yourself and more confident as you are accepting who you are. I can assure you that I can comfortably put myself in front of the mirror and smile and feel good about myself , although the acne scars still with me, it no longer has any power over me. This is because I am who I am, and I am comfortable with myself.
- Offer Help - Helping people is a gift that you can offer to people around you. You will feel good about yourself that you are making a positive difference in other people's lives. This positive attitude will make you realize you have the strength, and you are a kind person. Helping people grow is helping yourself grow too, and this in tern will boost your self confidence.
- Step out of your comfort zone - Challenge youself everyday. Stretch yourself and explore the unknown and such adrenaline would help you see how easily things can be accomplished. The best of all you have experienced something new and rewarding.
- Healthy LifeStyle - Eating well and staying healthy with regular exercise will also build your confidence. When you exercise, you actually raised endorphins and you will feel good and happier and healthier too. Healthy LifeStyle is definitely a key contributor to boost your self confidence.