Confidence is the key which can unlock doors, the foundation on which everything else is built and the secret of your success. Yet it is an elusive trait which can take a lifetime to build and a moment to lose. One thing is for sure, confidence never stands still, much like the tides of the sea it ebbs and flows. In some situations you can feel charged with it and in other situations it abandons you completely, leaving you as lifeless as a deflated balloon. The trick is to know how best to nurture your confidence so it won't dessert you at that crucial moment. Below you'll find five different ways to increase your confidence and become the sole master of your destiny.
1) Learn to take control Close your eyes for a second and think of the most assured, dynamic, and confident person you know. Have they ever struggled with confidence issues? Trust us, they have. Everyone, and we mean everyone, has at some point been plagued by low self-confidence. True strength lies in how you react to such situations. Accept certain situations will make you nervous but instead of avoiding them and loading them with a greater significance than they actually possess, embrace them, because they offer you the opportunity to seize control and say to yourself, “No one else but me can control how I feel and act.” Even if it is an act, the bottom line is this, if you act confidently for long enough, pretty soon you'll feel confident too.
2) Be a sport If you're on top of your game physically, chances are you'll be on top of your game mentally. Regular participation in sport can not only build your fitness but it can also build your confidence. In particular, team sports such as football and rugby are great for confidence because in such environments not only do you have to believe in your ability to handle whatever is thrown your way, but everyone else on the pitch has to believe in and rely on you in equal measure. Individual sporting pursuits such as cycling, tennis, and jogging are excellent for your confidence levels in that they are a great way to set yourself challenges and overcome obstacles as your travel towards your goal of even greater self-belief.
3) Be a daredevil A lot of people with poor confidence deny themselves the one thing that is the right of every human being – the fulfilment of our own personal potential. Confidence is not something you can wait for the postman to bring you one fine morning in a handy brown parcel, it's something you've got to get out there and earn. Ask yourself what it is about any given situation that turns you into a nervous wreck and then go out there and slay the beast. The mind will often follow where the body leads so it's a good idea to do something once in a while that inspires feelings of anxiety and trepidation. Jumping from a plane or paragliding are extreme ways to conquer fears and awaken the daredevil in you, whilst simultaneously reaffirming to yourself that your confidence is much greater than your doubts. There are however a host of other physical, less extreme challenges which can build your confidence.
4) Speak your mind For those less inclined to physical pursuits, public speaking is a great way to build your confidence. Being an after dinner speaker in particular may seem daunting when the attention of the room is solely directed upon your person, but when you realise they're hanging on your every word and laughing at your every joke, your confidence will begin to feel like a Greek god – simply Olympian.
5) Find your inner calm There are many meditation and yoga techniques tailored to build confidence and self-esteem whilst purifying your psyche of negativity and stress. By studying the basics of these two disciplines, you can analyse and gain startling insights into exactly why you respond to certain situation in a non-confident way and calmly address what you need to do to respond to these situations in a much more confident manner. As well as building confidence, yoga and meditation will enhance your overall well-being. In conclusion, confidence building doesn't happen overnight, but by adopting one or all of the above techniques you can lead a much more fulfilling life free of the low self-esteem, fear and dread that at the end of the day is all in the mind. Now get out there and enjoy!