Confidence is not something magic, a gift that some people have and some people don’t. With the right mindset and actions, you can cultivate a truly powerful and confident personality. This guide tells you how in a very practical way.
Why You Are Not Confident
If you are feeling introverted, if you are feeling that you are not assertive, if you are not decisive with people, all this can be flipped around. It takes some personal development work but it is definitely possible. People have done it before you. Don’t tell yourself that you are just an introvert, or that you are a shy type of person. You might have been but up to this point but all of that is changeable.
It is said that people are born extroverted but life events make some people introverted. These events, usually during childhood or puberty, created negative beliefs about yourself. These negative beliefs make you less assertive and less expressive in some situations.
Confidence is a very lofty thing, so we need to know more precisely what areas you are lacking confidence in. It is very unlikely that you are lacking confidence in all areas of your life. Most certainly you can list many situations where you feel very confident. Therefore it is wrong to say “I am not a confident person”. You might be but only in certain situations. If you can pinpoint the situations where you are not confident, you can start taking action. That is what we will be doing next.
During our lifetime we collect a lot of limiting beliefs about ourselves. Beliefs that are not realistic and certainly are not helping us. They are like big roadblocks preventing you from taking the highway to the life you want to live. The good thing is that they can be changed.
Now we are getting to the recipe for change and it’s time to list your negative beliefs. Take a few minutes to list your negative beliefs on paper. Be as specific as possible.
Example of limiting beliefs can be:
- I am really bad at telling stories
- I don’t like holding presentations
- I am afraid of getting rejected by a person I find attractive
- I don’t enjoy dancing
- I don’t like being in the center of attention
- I am afraid of talking to strangers
- If people find out I have social anxiety they will not approve of me
- When I go on a date I become so nervous I will repel the other person
- I am not a humorous person
- If I say my true opinion people will not like me
- I don’t find anything to talk about when on a date
Cultivate Alternative Actions
Good work. You now have a piece of golden wisdom in your hand. Most people never get this far. When you know your limiting beliefs, you can start taking action towards a more confident and assertive lifestyle.
Answer these questions for each of your limiting beliefs:
- How would the most confident person act in this situation?
- How would the most confident person think in this situation?
Here is an example if you limiting belief was, I don’t like holding presentations.
- I would answer the question when ever I can on the weekly Monday morning briefings at work.
- I would ask my boss to hold a presentation if I know I have something to share that would help my teammates.
- I would think of presentations as giving a gift of knowledge rather than focusing overly on my own appearance.
Do this for all of your limiting beliefs.
What you now hold in your hand is your game plan. Congratulations! What to do from here you kind of intuitively know. You need to start living and practicing these alternative actions. Start step by step. The process can take a while but the rewards are huge.
Resources To Get You Started
Comfort Zone Challenges
If your limiting beliefs revolve around the fear of being judged by others or being in the center of attention, comfort zone challenges can help you.
A comfort zone challenge is to continuously put yourself in a situation that triggers social fear with the purpose of making you more socially confident.
Public Speaking At Toastmasters
If you want a safe and supporting place to practice public speaking we recommend Toastmasters. This is a wonderful world wide organization with speaking clubs in all major cities.
The clubs have weekly meetings. You can come as a guest and see what it is all about. It is common practice to offer guests the opportunity to hold a 2-minute improvised speech. Great chance to practice.
Find a club here: Toastmasters – Find a local club