Has anyone ever told you that you should be more confident?
You give a presentation in high school and people tell you, “you should just be a little bit more confident”. Or you want to get in front of a camera for your business and people tell you “you should just be more confident and do it”. Or you’re nervous before a job interview, and everyone tells you to “just walk in and be confident”.
Gee, thanks, mom. Let me just put on my confidence jacket, and I’ll be fine. Please note the sarcasm. When, in the history of the world, has anyone ever gotten more confident from hearing that sentence? The answer is never. But while telling people to be more confident won’t work, the good news is that there ARE things you can do to become more confident.
1. Take 100% Ownership
Here’s the truth: you are the ONLY owner of your life, and your happiness. It’s up to you, and you alone, to make yourself happy. It’s so easy to think, “Oh, my partner/friends/family should be making me happy”, and of course that’s the ideal scenario, but when it comes down to it, it’s on you.
You might want to wallow after a break-up, or when you find yourself in a really sh*tty situation. But the only person who can turn things around is you. So take radical responsibility for your life and your happiness, and realise that you have the power to change the things you’re unhappy about.
2. Learn how to say no
If you’re a people pleaser, ‘saying no' probably doesn’t come super naturally to you. We want to make the people around us happy, even if it means sacrificing something ourselves. But we can’t carry on like that forever.
The best life lessons come from hairdressers, right? A few years ago, my hairdresser told me that the most important skill I’d have to learn in my life is learning how to say no. I thought it was bullshit. I didn't believe him…until I did. Because when you say yes to something, you are saying no to everything else, including yourself. Which brings us perfectly onto the next point.
3. Get clear on your wants and needs
Write down what you need. Find out what you need. Ask your heart what you truly want. My coach Sarah often says, “Does this make your heart leap?” and I used to think it was a weird sentence, but actually, it really resonates with me right now.
If someone asks me to do something, I no longer think “okay, I'll do something and maybe I don't really want to but I don't know because I don't know what the alternative is”. Instead, I'll ask myself the question, “Does this make my heart leap? Do I want to do this?”.
This means instead of asking myself “Is there a reason not to do this?”, I ask myself if there is a reason to do it. It’s a positive spin and it completely changes your narrative.
You deserve to be treated really well by your environment. But no one will treat you that way unless you know how to communicate what you want and need.
4. Forgive yourself
Being perfect is not only overrated – it’s completely unattainable. No matter what you see on social media or people’s highlight reels, everyone makes mistakes, has bad days, and has sides to themselves that they’d rather not show the world. In other words, they’re NORMAL.
Whether you’re feeling down because of dating drama, an unproductive work week, or you’re struggling with something like overeating, the answer is forgiving yourself. Don’t try and make up for it by working extra hours or going on a crash diet. A new day is a new start, so just reset yourself to neutral and do your best.
5. You can’t pour from an empty cup
It’s a saying you’ve probably heard before, and for a good reason: it’s one of the most important lessons in life. Always put yourself first and prioritize your self care. When you run your own business, it’s tempting to try and do everything all at once. But if you don’t schedule in time to rest and restore your mind and body, you won’t be able to help anyone.
Moral of the story? You definitely can’t become confident overnight, but you CAN start taking steps to build yourself up. Put the work in, and over time you’ll learn and grow to become the best, most confident version of you.
Grab your confidence manifesto here: https://fastforwardamy.com/confidencemanifesto
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