Published in Jul 2020 / Updated in Dec 2020
It happens to all of us eventually. Whether it was the loss of a job promotion or failure at school, we’ve all had those moments where we hit a rough patch and find our confidence dwindling drastically.
For some people, losing their self-confidence can mean losing their sense of who they are. They feel out of depth and unsure of what to, and what not to do. Famous American writer Mark Twain said, ‘A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.’ Which means self-confidence and comfort go hand-in-hand. To ensure that you feel as confident and comfortable with yourself as you can, here are five easy tips to help you get your confidence back.
1. Stop Comparing Yourself To Others
A distinct attitude of those with low self-confidence is that they always compare themselves to other people. This has the effect of making your works and achievements seem small and unimportant, especially when comparing yourself with someone with a lot more practice and experience than you. This type of comparison can lead to a high lack of confidence.
One way to overcome comparing yourself to others is to remember that everyone has a starting point. That person who you’re currently comparing yourself to has not always been as good as you think they have. This can sometimes be hard to remember, but it is important to do so. Also, once we find ourselves either about to or in the middle of comparing ourselves to someone else, we must stop. This is because self-comparison is oftentimes an unconscious action.
2. Develop A Good Body Image Of Yourself
According to ‘Assessment of Body Image and Self-Esteem among Young Adolescents’, a study published in 2016, physical appearance has been shown to have one of the biggest impacts on an adolescent’s self-esteem. This is no surprise as social media users pride themselves on judging people by specific standards of beauty. So, it is sadly normal for people to feel a great loss of confidence as a result of their body images.
Looking in the mirror for at least five minutes a day, and speaking good things to yourself can help you feel great about yourself for the rest of the day. In the long term, it can give you back your self-confidence, along with a more positive body image. You may even decide to try out a few power poses while looking in the mirror such as putting your hands on your hips.
As silly as this may sound, studies have shown that self-talk is actually a great tool in helping improve people’s perception of their body images. Psychologist and clinical director at the center for eight and eating disorders, David Sarwer says that this is one of the first methods he uses with some of his patients.
Even if you don’t have problems with your body image or your looks, doing this will help you get rid of the negative words you associate yourself within your mind.
3. Give Yourself A Few Little Wins
Most people experience big confidence setbacks after a failure in something big, especially if it was in an idea or action they previously had lots of faith in. Allowing yourself to engage in something particular easy that you can win can be helpful in not only changing your focus from whatever it was that made lose your confidence in the first place but by giving you back your confidence in your abilities and boosting your self-esteem.
A lot of times, our self-confidence is linked to our faith in our abilities. Oxford dictionary described self-confidence as ‘A feeling of trust in one’s abilities, qualities, and judgment.’ Permitting ourselves little wins like successfully cleaning your room, or finishing a novel depending on what our hobbies are can help restore our faith in ourselves, boost our self-esteem and convince us that we are not as useless as our minds insist we are.
4. Try To Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone And Take Risks
For most of us, when we experience a setback that causes us to lose our confidence, we tend to sit back on our heels and avoid taking risks or trying new things. But rather than having the desired effect of helping us gain back our confidence, it mostly causes a rift in us. Firstly, not only does it gives us time to dwell on our mistakes, but it sets us back from our usual working pace and makes us wearier of taking risks.
Media law consultant David Banks said, ‘The more risks you take, the stronger your confidence grows.’ Granted, not every risk you take will be a success, but if you are able to master the habit of learning from your mistakes, risk-taking can be a great way to boost your confidence.
Trusting yourself to take a risk, no matter how small it is, can be a very powerful way to boost your confidence and self-esteem.
5. Self-Help Books
One of the most popular coping mechanisms with people who experience major confidence setbacks is self-help books. Even as we delve more into the age of technology, this type of coping mechanism continues to take different forms, such as motivational speakers, self-help gurus including the famous Jay Shetty, and bestsellers such as Jen Sincer’s bestselling book ‘You are a Badass’ or ‘The Power of Positive Thinking’ by Norman Vincent Peale.
While some of these books are heavily criticized, a great number of people admit to having regained their confidence through the use of self-help books. Each of these novels contains adequate tips to get your confidence back.
Lastly, be sure to surround yourself with loved ones who admire you and will assist you in gaining back your confidence. A lot of us lose our confidence over little failures, but we forget that it is the ability to fail and continue working that builds confidence.
Thomas Edison, the man who invented the lightbulb was said to have tried a hundred times before he finally succeeded. So, while confidence related to success, it is in fact the combination of both confidence and endurance that builds success.