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5 Easy Steps to Gain Self-confidence
Self-confidence is built through time. We are not born confident, we grow confident. It shows in how we interact with people. It shows in how often we take risks. It shows in how soon we bounce back after suffering a setback. Any uncertainty because of a lack of knowledge or a lack of experience is overcome in time. Any apprehension because of too much experience, meanwhile, is overcome with practice, also in time. Here are five easy steps that we can employ to become more self-assured.
1. Look people in the eye.
Eye contact is very important in building self-confidence. We assume that our eyes are the most expressive feature – 9 times out of 10, we’re right. To look into someone’s eyes means that we are ready for what we are going to see in them, that we accept them, and that we are not afraid of what they will also see in us. To be bold in eye is to be brave as well as open. Practice in the mirror. Look into your own eyes. Smile with your eyes.
2. Project a well-crafted image.
Part of building self-confidence is projecting a confident image. Maintain good posture. Dress smartly. Speak in a well-modulated voice. Give a firm handshake, and yes, a friendly smile. You know what they say about first impressions – make it count. If you project an image of confidence, you will embody confidence, and you will feel much more confident. And although you may not always feel confident, a habitual assumption of the mannerisms of confidence will aid you in “getting your mojo back,” so to speak.
3. Know your own worth.
You are more than your age. You are more than your social connections. You are more than your job. You are more than your achievements. You are more than your past. Your self-worth may derive an ego-boost from all these things, but what you are is a person in continuous development. We make life-changing decisions every day. By all means, value what you’ve made of yourself so far, but do not make the mistake of thinking it ends there. Give yourself some credit.
4. Evaluate yourself with accuracy: meditate.
We sometimes shy away from looking too deeply into our own psyche, but to know yourself, your strengths and weaknesses, is to take control of your destiny. Confront your fears via meditation. Lessen your anxiety and apprehension by admitting to yourself why you are afraid, and releasing that fear. Monitor your behavior; note the instances where you have felt shrunken and unworthy. Pinpoint the negative statements in your own mind – are these a result of inner critical thinking, or outside influence? Whatever the source, challenge yourself to find the strength within to combat negativity. You are more than your mistakes or your weaknesses. And you will always have the power to change.
5. You do not need everyone’s approval.
It is wonderful to be admired and complimented, but your self-worth should not hinge on how well-liked you are. Learn to accept compliments with grace, and learn to bear the sting of criticism with equal good manners. Do not be crushed if the approval is taken away. Do not act with the sole intention of pleasing other people. Sometimes the uncomfortable thing is the right thing. Sometimes you have to put your needs first. Sometimes a clash of personalities is simply inevitable. Be mindful of balancing expectations with reality. And remember: no one knows you better than you know yourself. Trust yourself. Believe in yourself.