Build a stronger belief in you
Since a high school student asked me about increasing her self-confidence I have been wondering, what exactly is self-confidence?
“A strong, fearless and bold belief in one’s self and one’s capacities,” says the dictionary. Well, that makes sense. But how do we get it?
One powerful way to increase self-confidence is by listening to how you talk to yourself. Think about it.
If you talked to your friends the way you talk to yourself how many friends would you have?
What statements are you making to yourself that take you down? “I wish I were skinnier.” “I wish I were more beautiful.” “I wish I made the time to do more.”
The mind works like a computer. If you keep entering this negative data you will continue to believe it.
Slow down your mental-talk so you can hear the statements you are making about yourself.
Do you say, “I’m stupid” and “I’m not popular”? Or “I’m always learning” and “I have good friends who love me”?
Most of us want a pill, a book, a new car or a new relationship to help build our self-image. Where’s our quick, easy fix? But taking baby steps is the best way to build your belief in you.
If you’re shy, go up and say Hello to one new person at the next party.
It gets easier as we get older because we don’t care as much about what other people think. Self-image blossoms when you care about what you think of yourself.
I hope one or two of these ideas help you gain a better self-image:
• Take an inventory of what you are good at. Give yourself a gold star!
• Write your talents on a sticky note and put them on your mirror.
• Stay fit. Yoga’s Warrior pose and fitness classes like kick-boxing, dance, spinning and strength training build self-assurance.
• Set attainable goals. Do you put huge expectations on yourself and then, when you don’t match up, you tear yourself down?
• Write down your goals and take realistic steps to achieve them. Expect bumps in the road. That’s how we learn.
• Don’t be afraid of failure. Learn to view “failure” as a chance to try again in a new way. And the fear is the part that makes it powerful!
• Encourage yourself after you’ve taken a new step. “I’ve got a long way to go, but at least I am brave enough to try it.”
• Look in the mirror and give yourself a smile and a few words of praise, out loud.
• Lengthen your spine by sitting and standing up straight.
• When you feel nervous, take deep breaths.
• Stop raising the bar. When you accomplish something new, bask in the glory.
Take time to feel the good feelings. Talk yourself up with supportive words like, “You did it! I am so proud of you.” Because you are totally unique. There is only one of you! Be proud of all that you are and all that you will become.
Kay Wagner, LMP and NASM certified personal trainer, leads strength training, yoga and pilates at Rosehill Community Center. She offers personal training, yoga and meditation coaching in her studio overlooking the mountains and water, at 828 2nd St. in Mukilteo.
Kay specializes in coaching boomers and seniors. Her Guided Meditation CDs are popular for all ages. Email firstname.lastname@example.org, call 425-353-4545 or visit kaywagnerwellness.com for more information.