Is it just me or does it seem like a lot of people are crying out for help these days? Over the last week, I’ve seen it more and more and it breaks my heart. More specifically, it’s about confidence. There seems to be an epidemic of low self-confidence and I don’t need to write a treatise on why this is so, we all know why, we all have our own, individual, reasons. But the question everyone asks is how, exactly, do we gain it?
I have to say, who I was five years ago and who I am now are practically completely different people. On the birthday card my best friend gave me last year she told me I’ve never been better, and it’s true. I may still have some things to work on (heck, I always will) but I can say that, compared to five years ago, I am more confident than I have ever been an it just keeps growing.
First, a quick question: think about the last couple of weeks and ask yourself if there’s anything you’ve done out of the ordinary? Has it just been the same old routine or did you do something different? My guess is that those of you wanting to know how to gain self confidence, most of you haven’t done much differently. That’s alright, it’s a starting point!
We gain confidence by achieving things and to achieve something you need to have a goal to work towards. Whether it be personal or work related, when you achieve a goal, your confidence raises. Why? Because it was hard work! When you do something that’s difficult, when you slog it out, push through it and come to the end, you realize what it took to get there and you see the results of your effort. So, if you want to gain confidence, you need to get up and do something! It’s as simple as that!
This is why the most inspiring, motivating and successful people are the ones that have the most confidence. They’ve all worked damned hard to get to where they are today, they’ve pushed through rough days, backward slides, failures, being pushed down and getting dirty only to have NOT given up and what do we have? Thousands of successful people who achieve enormous things (running marathons, graduating school, running businesses, being able to touch their toes for the first time, outlasting their kids on the playground). They gain confidence because they’ve smashed their own perceived limits with a hammer and decied to see what they were capable of.
Start off with something small, make a goal for yourself, whether it be to walk around the block effortlessly, get an A on your next assignment or seal that deal with a client, make a goal and focus on it and let me know what happens when you achieve that goal! The more goals you make and achieve, the more your confidence will soar!
Five years ago had you told me that I’d run multiple races (including a half marathon), cimb the CN Tower, lose 85lbs, go back to school and start my own business I would have laughed right in your face because at that time, I truly did not think I was capable of such things. But it all started with a walk around the block, a few days a week which progressed to flirting with running a 5k. Why? Because I consistently walked around the block, then added a few more, then a few more. What I thought was really difficult at first (that first block) actually became EASIER after a few weeks! Who knew?! I didn’t, because I never bothered to try before.
So get out and try something new today, get out of your comfort zone! Put your pants on left leg first (or right), take a different route to work, agree to go out with your friends for a night on the town. Allow your mind to get out of a rut and into one that looks at possibilities. Make a goal, achieve it and then make another one and another one! Go out there and see what you’re capable of because chances are, you have no IDEA!
Photo credit: eric albee