Confidence is a mindset. You can control it.
And it’s not just any mindset… it’s a mindset that will turn your life around.
This is a lesson I wish I would have learned 10 years ago. Like many young people, I struggled with self-esteem issues when I was growing up.
I didn’t feel confident in my appearance, my knowledge, my skills… actually, I didn’t feel good about any of my qualities.
Eventually, I learned that confidence is a mindset that you can shift in and out of. It doesn’t rely on external factors. Confidence is 100 percent an internal force.
Your mindset is how you perceive reality. It’s “your own reality,” if you will. Using your mind, you create the reality that you live in.
If you maintain a confident mindset, you won’t be afraid anymore. You’ll take the right risks and reap big rewards. You’ll have the strength to chase your dreams and build a life you love.
But if you struggle with confidence, there’s a good chance you’re holding yourself back in life… and that’s no bueno.
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How lack of confidence can impact your success
If you have low self-esteem, you run the risk of self-sabotaging… This risk is serious.
My lack of confidence caused me to form limiting beliefs, which became ingrained in my mind.
For example, I thought:
- I wasn’t smart enough to get into the college I wanted to go to.
- I wasn’t pretty enough to find a good boyfriend.
- I wasn’t talented enough to make money as a content creator.
Years later, those limiting beliefs were difficult to overcome. But to move forward in life, I had to kick those negative thoughts to the curb and replace them with empowering ones.
Now, I’ll share a few empowering beliefs I currently have that help me succeed in life:
1. When I’m at work, I view myself as an authority.
If I run into an issue with a coworker, I stick up for myself and defend my stance instead of letting the other person walk all over me.
In the professional world, I’ve learned how crucial it is to have a backbone. (This is especially true for women!)
Of course, you should pick your battles. Choose kindness, respect your higher ups, and make an effort to work well with others. But if you want to advance in your career, you can’t be a pushover.
2. I value my content and creative ideas.
When I started my first blog in 2016, I didn’t want to be vulnerable on the Internet. I was scared of what other people would think of me. I felt that my content wasn’t good enough.
Some months, I wouldn’t post anything at all because I was afraid other people would make fun of me.
As a content creator, I learned that I have to be confident. How can I get other people to value my ideas if I clearly don’t value them myself?
Now, I squash those beliefs that my content isn’t good enough… I don’t even let myself go down that train of thought. Instead, I motivate myself to create.
I made the decision to be supportive of myself as a creator. And as a result, I’ve published nearly 100 blog posts in the last year. I’m so proud of myself.
3. I’ve worked on loving myself more. I don’t need someone else’s love to feel happy.
In college, I was constantly in and out of relationships. I thrived on attention from the men in my life. But I wasn’t truly happy.
I’m mature enough now to know that I’m not ready for another relationship. I learned to be happy as a single lady. Since joining the self-love club, I’ve been able to focus on my career and make big power moves in my life.
See how empowering beliefs can make a major impact?
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Talk back to your inner critic!
Don’t be a bully to yourself.
I used to be overly critical of myself (and sometimes, I still am.) Instead of motivating myself, I let my inner critic belittle me.
It’s important to be gentle with yourself. Stop those negative thoughts in their tracks. Be your own biggest cheerleader instead of a harsh critic.
Use affirmations and positive self-talk.
Affirmations are statements that help you overcome negative thoughts. They will motivate you to make positive changes in your life.
If you use affirmations regularly, you’ll be able to reframe negative thoughts about yourself and shift into a positive mindset.
Examples of affirmations include:
I am beautiful.
I am intelligent.
I am a good person.
For more examples, check out my post on 50 empowering affirmations to change your life.
How I overcame self-esteem issues and the self-sabotaging behaviors that came with them
To feel more confident, I had to pull a switcheroo on my limiting beliefs and turn them into empowering ones.
When I was in high school, I spent 2 hours getting ready every morning because I didn’t feel beautiful the way I was. (I believe makeup is an art form, and it’s beautiful in its own right. But I also think everyone should appreciate their natural appearance!)
I didn’t respect myself in relationships because I believed I wasn’t pretty enough or interesting enough to keep a guy around.
My creative projects flopped because I didn’t have confidence in my ideas.
Limiting beliefs are a form of self-sabotage. Even worse, they lead to self-sabotaging behaviors that can destroy your progress and bring you back to square one.
So, what steps did I take to conquer those pesky limiting beliefs? Here are a few:
I became self-aware.
True confidence is rooted in awareness. You need to be aware of who you are, what you contribute to the world, and the stage of life you’re in.
Realize that I’m talking about being SELF-aware. This doesn’t have anything to do with other people. Comparing yourself to others is yet another form of self-sabotage!
The key to self-awareness is focusing on yourself in the present moment.
Don’t worry about who you were in the past. If you don’t like your past self, that’s okay—you can choose to be someone different right now.
First, develop a deep sense of awareness of yourself in this present state. Then, you’re ready to move onto the next step.
With my newfound awareness, I acknowledged my weaknesses… and accepted them.
Awareness is the opposite of delusion.
To be self-aware, you need to recognize that you’re human… you’re not supposed to be perfect.
So, take a minute to acknowledge your weaknesses. Instead of viewing your flaws as these horrible, negative aspects of you, look at them from a neutral perspective.
Your flaws make you unique. If you can change them, do it… as long as it’s going to make you happier.
However, if your perceived “flaws” are things you can’t change, the only thing to do is accept them as part of you.
Here’s an example: I have 20 to 30 moles all over my face and body. They’re genetic. (My dad also has them.)
I could get them removed if I wanted to. And of course, if they ever became a health concern, I would get them removed. Although a lot of people view moles and birthmarks as imperfections, I’ve made peace with mine.
A few years ago, one of my girlfriends told me I should get the moles on my face removed. I thought about it, but decided that I’m going to embrace my uniqueness, even if other people don’t agree with it.
I realized that it’s completely okay to have flaws and imperfections. They make us human! As a recovering perfectionist, I found empowerment within that realization.
I celebrated my strengths and set goals that aligned with them.
I learned that I can control my mindset and mood by focusing my energy on things that make me feel good about myself.
Instead of obsessing over my weaknesses, I try to focus on my strengths whenever possible. You should do the same!
I’m a firm believer that you can do anything you set your mind to. However, you’ll have a much easier time achieving goals that align with your strengths.
I’m not a pro athlete. I enjoy going to the gym, but I’m not the most fit person in the world. However, English was my best subject in school.
Let’s say I set two goals for myself:
- Win a medal in the Olympics.
- Publish a book.
Which one do you think I’ll have an easier time achieving?
I’ll never say never about anything. The universe does not exist in absolutes, and it’s possible to manifest anything with the right mindset.
But because I’m better at writing than physical fitness, it’s likely that I will reach the goal of publishing a book faster and more easily than winning a medal in the Olympics.
You’ll feel the most confident when you focus on your goals.
Speaking of goals, did you know they’re major confidence boosters?
The other day, someone I look up to said something that resonated with me.
He said, “Sam, when you let little things get to you, that’s when you lose focus.”
A lot of power exists within the ability to focus. And when your goals become focal points in your life, you’ll exude confidence.
I used to obsess over my appearance. I became absorbed in my efforts to look pretty enough for other people, but the real problem was my lack of confidence in myself. My self-esteem issues didn’t have anything to do with other people.
As soon as I shifted my focus to other areas of my life, like my education, career, and blog, I didn’t feel insecure anymore. Even though I still needed to work on loving myself more, simply changing my focus helped me feel more confident every day.
Self-love takes time. It’s not an overnight thing. Shifting focus, on the other hand, can happen much more quickly.
If you struggle with low self-esteem, try focusing on areas of your life that empower you. Personal goals are a great place to start!
How to visualize yourself as a confident, attractive, and successful person
Even if you don’t feel confident now, visualizing yourself as a self-assured and successful person will help you achieve the level of confidence you desire.
Visualization is a technique that activates the law of attraction and gives you the mental building blocks you need to construct your ideal life.
Although it might sound intimidating at first, visualization is very simple. All you need to do is create a detailed picture of your ideal self.
Instead of focusing on outward appearance or material possessions, try to include things in your visualization that truly fulfill you.
Pay attention to how you feel. The power of visualization isn’t within the achievements or things themselves. It’s about how you FEEL when you buy a house, get your dream job, or give birth to your first child.
At the end of the day, your goal is to manifest happiness and emotional fulfillment, not accomplishments or material things. You could be the most successful person on Earth, but are you really successful if you don’t feel proud of your accomplishments? Think about that.
So, when you visualize your ideal self, concentrate hard on that feeling of confidence. If you surrender into this practice and do it frequently enough, you’ll feel that confidence for real.
Here are a few ways to practice visualization:
- Close your eyes and meditate on it for 5 to 10 minutes.
- Write your vision down in your journal.
- Create a vision board.
Once you have a solid vision of who your ideal self is, it’s time to show up as that person.
Start acting like your ideal self. Radiate the confidence your ideal self has.
- Have good posture at all times.
- Wear clothes that make you feel great about yourself.
- Take actions that serve you emotionally, and make changes in your lifestyle to feel more confident inside and out.
Seriously, don’t knock visualization until you try it. It’s free, and it’s a great way to empower yourself with confidence.
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