At Nature’s Greatest Secret we aim to support our community in feeling great and being happy in their skin.
In part one, we explored some of the science-backed hacks when looking to improve our confidence. In part two, we’ll add to this with further ways you can back your brain and build genuine confidence.
Face Your Fears
Peter Dutton, Director of ISC Wellbeing, encourages us to tap into our primal nature regarding fear. After all, it’s a natural emotion. He notes ‘we are conditioned to feel fear; however, facing your biggest fears can lead to some of your greatest accomplishments; decide to flip fear into excitement’. It’s near impossible to have genuine confidence if we completely remove any fear or uncertainty from our lives. Much in the same way that you won’t be handle viruses well with no built resistance.
If you remove yourself from fearful situations, you’ll never be ready to face them. Go for it with the promotion or the holiday you’ve wanted to take for years. One of the best ways to build your confidence in these situations is by facing your fears head-on.
Practice facing some of your fears that stem from a lack of self-confidence. If you’re afraid you’ll embarrass yourself or think that you’re going to mess up, try anyway. A little self-doubt can even help improve performance. Tell yourself it’s just an experiment and see what happens.
You might learn that being a little anxious or making a few mistakes isn’t as bad as you thought. And each time you move forward, you gain more confidence in yourself. In the end, this can help prevent you from taking risks that will result in major negative consequences.
Practice Positive Self-Talk
Positive self-talk is often viewed with a certain degree of cynicism in society. People may associate it with people who are a little lost and being manipulated by self-proclaimed life coaches on the internet, for example. However, there is plenty of medical research supporting positive self-talk as a tangible way to improve confidence.
Gregory L. Landz Ph. D is keen to separate positive self-talk from ‘self-deception’. We can do this by recognising some of the truths in situations we have perhaps been hiding from. For example, the inevitability of mistakes and the healthy notion of letting go of perfectionism. Landz explains that people are treated with therapy for depression, one of the key areas of focus is to identify the source of the negative messages we tell ourselves in order to intentionally overwrite them.
Similarly, positive self-talk can feed into a number of health benefits, all of which have a clear link to improved confidence. For example, positive self-talk is linked to increased vitality, reduced chronic pain, less stress and distress and even improved immune function.
Let’s round off this segment with an example of positive self-talk compared to negative self-talk:
Negative: I made a fool of myself and messed that up.
Positive: I gave it my best shot and have a better idea of how to succeed next time.
Recognise your strengths (and play to them)
The ability to build on your personal strengths is directly linked to life satisfaction. Of course, a common problem is that people aren’t sure about their strengths; at least not enough to make the conscious decision to pursue them.
There are many tangible ways to start this process. You can simply ask the people who know you; they may be able to articulate your strengths in a way you hadn’t rationalised before. You can take a personality test which will suggest typical strengths based on your answers and subsequent personality type. In addition, you could write a reflective note on what you have done in the past and what you continue to do. How do you spend your time and what things do you feel have done well?
You pinpoint these strengths and then pursue them. Then what happens? More often than not, if we take the step to invest the time and energy into these skills we will improve at them. Your self-confidence then naturally improves. Your strengths become even stronger, which helps improve your belief in yourself. It snowballs into a feedback loop of ‘I’m good at this and know I can get better’, which is exactly what may happen.
If you’re good at a certain sport, for instance, make it a point to train or play at least once a week. If you’re good at a particular task at work, try to do that task more often. Building on your strengths can help you build your self-confidence.
Set Realistic Goals
Chasing your bigger life goals inevitable results in some setbacks along the way. This can make you wonder if you have what it takes to succeed. It can also leave you questioning how to be more confident while still achieving your dreams. The answer lies in setting realistic goals.
Timely do a great job of breaking down some key considerations to achieve realistic goals. Firstly, you want to make your goal specific. Instead of ‘I’d like to get some content written today’, block out some time in your diary for it and note that ‘I want to achieve X by X’. This makes the goal tangible and more likely to happen.
In addition, they advise getting the ambition level right when it comes to setting goals. If you’re trying to learn to play the guitar for the first time, you’ll be dispirited come the end of the day if you’re committed to learning how to play the entirety of Bat out of Hell. Setting high-reaching goals and failing to achieve them has been found to damage confidence levels.
Similarly, if you set the bar too low and commit to only learning how to hold the guitar correctly on day one, then you may not progress at a speed that will play into improving your confidence with the instrument. You might see the speed of your progression as disheartening.
Of course, everyone will have different measures of what a realistic target for any given day looks like, so it’s important to stay in your lane mentally and think about what’s the right target for you. You may find there is a certain amount of trial and error with this initially, and that’s totally fine.
However, while goal-setting is certainly personal, doing some research into the goals you want to achieve can be helpful. For instance, nutritionists may provide some guidance on what a healthy weight loss target is for someone of your build and provide suggestions as to what a good level of process and goal setting looks like. Knowing this helps you set a plan in line with this guideline, boosting your self-confidence when you hit it.
We hope you’ve found this two-part post helpful in your pursuit of growing confidence. We’re really proud of our range of products and have received an overwhelming response in terms of the confidence they have given many of our community members.
You can view our personal care range here.