This week I thought I’d encourage you to do a few simple things over the coming year, that’ll make a huge difference to your self-confidence.
1. Design your own Personal Blueprint
If you ask someone what they’d like out of life, generally they’ll struggle to give you an answer. Ask them what they don’t want and they’ll have a long list for you.
Unfortunately, people naturally seem to focus on what they don’t want in life.
If you’ve been reading about Personal Development for a while, you’ve no doubt seen one of the following statements, or something similar…
“You get what you focus on” or,
“Whatever you keep your attention on, you’ll create” or,
“Your focus equals your future”
So, if your focus is always on what you don’t want. What you don’t want is what you’ll get!
Your first piece of Home-play (like homework, but more fun!), is to find yourself a quiet place for a few minutes and design the life you really want.
Get yourself a notebook, or a few sheets of paper and picture your life if everything was as you wanted it to be.
• How would you look in this perfect life?
• How would you act?
• What things would you be doing?
• How would your body language be?
• What expression would you have?
• What things would you do differently?
• What kind of things would you be saying to yourself?
Picture as much as you can about this new you. Then describe this version (in as much detail as you can) on the paper.
Then, every day, read this description of yourself and in as much detail as you can, picture yourself being this person.
2. Set yourself some confidence building activities and tasks
Life begins outside of your comfort zone.
The problem for many of us, is in taking that initial step.
Why not make yourself a promise, to take a small step each day that pushes you just a bit.
Every day, take a few minutes to think about one small task, or action you could take the next day, that’ll stretch you slightly.
It needn’t be anything overly difficult in the beginning. It could be making that call you’ve been putting off, (or if you’re a man, asking for directions 😉).
Once you’ve decided on your task, close your eyes and imagine yourself confidently achieving it.
Now, take the plunge and go do it! Little-by-little your comfort zone will expand.
3. Change your physiology
The way you present yourself to the outside world greatly effects the way you feel inside.
Even something as simple as ‘putting on a smile’ can make a difference.
Here’s a short exercise from Deborah Gruenfeld (a Leadership and Organizational professor at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business), you should try.
• Sit up straight in your chair.
• Now, roll your shoulders back.
• Get your elbows away from your body.
• Stretch out your legs, (or, if you want cross one foot over your knee so your leg makes a triangle shape.)
Now read these words out loud, with as much feeling as you can:
“I can’t do it. I feel so helpless. I am worthless.”
What you’ll find is that it’s almost impossible for your mind to process thoughts of low self-esteem, when your body is presenting a show of power and confidence.
Next try this:
• Make yourself small and lean forward a bit.
• Bring your hands close to your body.
• Keep your knees together.
Once you’re in this position, read these words out loud, with feeling:
“I am totally in charge. I’m invincible. I’m on top of the world.”
Again it’s really difficult for your mind to present different feeling from the ones your body is presenting.
So, why not practice standing tall with open body language and wearing a healthy smile? You’ll be surprised how much difference it makes to your confidence.
As Deborah says…. “It’s not the case that our bodies only follow our psychology, but that we actually take cues from what our bodies are telling us, and the way we hold our bodies actually affects how powerful we feel and how powerfully we behave.”
I’ve embedded Deborah’s video if you’d like to see it.
What would be your tips for boosting your self-confidence? Let me know in the comments 🙂