How to double your self-confidence using 2 strategies backed by research

confidence courage mindset Jan 25, 2021

If self-confidence leads to a happier and more fulfilling life, wouldn’t you want to have more confidence?

Me too! 

Which is why I spent so many years learning, growing and achieving a high level of self-confidence for myself, so I can teach others how to master their inner game too.

No, this doesn’t mean I think I’m perfect with no self-doubts or insecurities, but one of the most important lessons I learned from my coaches, teachers and mentors was this…

Confidence is not a lack of insecurity or self-doubt, confidence is the belief in your ability to figure things out.

That opened up my mind and I hope it does for you too. Take a second to really think about it and identify what that quote really means.

Research has shown that even the most successful people in the world experience fear, doubts and insecurities, but they think about themselves differently than most people.

They’re able to navigate those negative thoughts and emotions in a way that empowers them to rise up to the challenge and move forward - despite their fears or worries.

They challenge their own thoughts and limiting beliefs. Don’t let those negative thoughts shape your identity!

You are not your thoughts, and you are not your emotions.

Remember, self-confidence is having the belief in yourself and your ability to figure things out.

What exactly is self-confidence?

Confidence is the belief in your ability to figure things out.

A more scientific definition is, “a feeling of self-assurance arising from one's appreciation of one's own abilities or qualities. Or the feeling or belief that one can rely on someone or something.”

In general, there are 3 major areas you need to focus on when it comes to confidence:

  1. Self
  2. Skills
  3. Social

Today we’re talking about “self-confidence” because without that, you won’t feel complete (even if you’re confident in the other two areas).

Take a minute to imagine you having to run a marathon. 

You might be thinking, “That’s ridiculous! I don’t have the ability or the physical endurance to do that! I would be out of breath in 10 minutes and my body would probably collapse to the ground, leaving myself vulnerable to attack by a big black bear because mother nature sends out her animals to attack weak human beings with low self-confidence…”

Okay that got a little weird, but that’s what happens you have high levels of self-confidence! You’re willing to be yourself even if others think you’re weird. 

Confidence is also about being authentic to who you are.

Most people lack confidence because they lack identity, but whatever your thoughts are about your ability to run a marathon, that’s based on your confidence.

If a kid with one leg can run 3,000 miles, you can run a friggin marathon lol.

Now, you might also be thinking “I don’t want to run a marathon” but that’s not the point, is it?

You know you could if you really tried, and that’s the point.

If this was a life or death scenario where you had to run a marathon, and if you didn’t then you would never be able to watch Netflix again…

I’m pretty sure you would get off your butt and start training!

If you dedicated yourself to this marathon, started training, got in shape, and even hired a running coach to help you accelerate your growth, you’d be able to run a marathon.

Because confident people know how to figure things out. They’re lifelong learners.

And I know you've experienced this feeling of confidence before. Where you feel super in control and things just go so smoothly for you. Maybe it’s at work, doing a job, or a social environment you’re in, either way I know you’ve felt this confidence before.

If you were to reflect on why, I’m sure it’s because you felt super comfortable with whatever it was that you were doing at the time. 

For example, if I’m teaching a lesson on Growth Mindset, I could easily wing it because I know what I’m talking about and I’ve done it for so long.

But that higher level of confidence is also demonstrated when people express that they don’t know the answers to everything, admitting when they need help and having the humility to learn from others.

It doesn’t mean they think they’re perfect. They just think differently about themselves and that’s the key.

They still have fears, doubts and insecurities, but since they have a growth mindset they don’t let those limiting beliefs shape their identity. 

It’s their self-talk that gets them to take action and work towards their goals, despite any obstacles or challenges.

Tip #1 - Measure your progress.

A major reason why people lack confidence is because they don’t measure or reflect on their progress.

My favorite quote I often repeat to myself (and others) is this:

“Common sense isn’t always common practice.”

If you want to be more confident, reflecting on your progress is vital. And what you don’t measure, you don’t grow. 

For example, how does your bank account grow?

You measure it! Even if you’re not aware of it, you’re still able to “see” the growth in your bank account because the numbers went up...or down lol.

Most people don’t measure their “emotional intelligence” which is why certain areas in their life (like confidence) suffer.

This is also why I built Mindset University! To help people increase their EQ. While I’m not perfect and I’m always learning and growing, I can tell you from personal experience (and research) that measuring your progress will help. It gives you insights into the past and helps you celebrate the small wins along the way.

So if you want to improve your confidence, you need to measure your progress through self-reflection. If you don’t know where to start or how to do that, then I have a research-backed activity that will help you get started and make it easy for you.

Growth requires change and that change is both a behavioral and a mental change.

  • Behavior = taking action by writing and completing the worksheet.
  • Mindset = thinking and reflecting on the questions.

This Understanding Self-Confidence Growth Work is a helpful resource if you want to understand your self-esteem and self-confidence in order to improve it.

The goal is: to help familiarize yourself with the mental and bodily experiences associated with self-confidence and identify behaviors that may be helpful when they feel low in self-esteem.

This worksheet has 3 parts, enjoy! Understanding Self-Confidence

Tip #2 - Monitor your procrastination.

Where are you procrastinating in life? 

Not going to the gym? Not doing your HW? Not starting that new diet?

There are several reasons why we procrastinate, but something I hardly see discussed in the world of personal development, is the underlying issue of confidence which is holding people back from taking action.

While “motivation” might be a legitimate reason for why someone isn’t going to the gym and exercising consistently, there’s also an underlying issue of “low self-esteem” where people don’t think they’re good enough, worthy enough, or capable of achieving their exercise goals. Thus, they procrastinate.

I can relate to this! For me, clarity is a reason why I procrastinate in certain areas of my business.

For example, my social media strategy. What does a lack of clarity represent? A lack of confidence.

And this is where people get it wrong.

It’s not a lack of confidence in “myself” rather in the “strategy”. I have confidence I’ll figure it out, and if I don’t know how or I’m struggling to figure it out, then I’ll hire professional help to get me on track. That’s what confident people do. They don’t let their doubts, worries or fears hold them back from taking action.

It takes courage to ask someone for help.

Either way, I’m going to figure it out and that’s an attitude you need to adopt for yourself in all areas of life. While things won’t always be sunshine and rainbows, if you decide to be confident then you’ll figure it out.

So if you’re procrastinating with working out, maybe you lack confidence in your clarity or purpose for working out (like me with my social media and what content I want to post).

This is why reflection is so powerful. You gain insights into why you’re procrastinating. 

“I don’t feel like working out today not because I’m lazy or unmotivated, but because I feel like I’m not seeing any progress and it feels pointless.”

Final Thoughts

We all struggle with confidence issues from time to time. But next time you feel like you’re not so confident with yourself, try to reflect back on your progress and look how far you’ve come. And if you haven’t made progress, then start asking yourself why and make the necessary adjustments.

A coach can always help you with identifying some underlying issues so if you’re looking for a way to gain some deeper insights into your own world and why you might lack some confidence, schedule a free call with me and I’d be happy to help.

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