How to feel more confident
I used to think that confidence is something you’re born with. You’re either born with this ‘trait’ or you’re doomed to feel insecure for the rest of your life.
Truth is, no one is just born confident. Self-confidence is a thought, it’s a decision, a belief, and it’s something that you can grow into and cultivate in your own life. You have the power to be truly confident. To be decisive. To trust yourself. To trust what you want. And, to trust that you can bounce back from whatever curveball life throws at you.
What I’ve also learned is that there’s no ‘template’ for self confidence...
Some people may come off as quite outgoing and gregarious on the outside, and inside may spend their lives second guessing, doubting and questioning themselves.
Some people may come off as shy and quiet, and have so much conviction in themselves.
Growing up, I used to be the ‘quiet one’. The shy girl that always hides behind her parents. Because of what our culture perceives as confident (I was always told “oh, why are you so shy?” “you’re too quiet”) I made it mean that I’m insecure, which became a self fulfilling prophecy and ultimately played a big part in my disordered relationship with food and my body.
Knowing what I know now, it wasn’t that I was insecure, I was just very happy in my own world. I was quiet because I listened carefully, I observed, I thought deeply.
One of the biggest gifts of my healing journey was developing self awareness which helped me reclaim my self confidence.
It didn’t happen overnight. It wasn’t linear. Or perfect. It took time to unravel all the old thought patterns and behaviours. It took a while for me to truly embody this new sense of confidence. To really become it.
For a while I was still constantly second guessing myself, overthinking, doubting, holding myself back… I remember thinking -
“I wish I could have the confidence to just do what I want to do in my life”
The thing is, what was often really challenging for me wasn’t even making the decision. At the end of the day, it was the indecision after I made the decision... The “oh gosh, did I make a mistake?” and then asking a million different people “Is this the right decision?”, as though everyone knows what’s good for me, but me.
I believed that if someone else approves me, then I could finally approve myself, then I could have confidence in myself. Which obviously works the opposite way, it always left me feeling ‘less than’.
Looking outside of ourselves for validation doesn’t serve us in the long term. Sure, it gives us that instant gratification that feels really good (the “oh, you think I’m doing well”) but it has a really short life span.
When we constantly look for external validation, we miss the precious opportunity of learning how to validate ourselves. As with any real deep change, what it really comes down to is doing the inner work to shift the story of our value and self confidence at the level of our beliefs.
And so because real self confidence is never based on something we earn or are given or achieve, but rather it's something we build within ourselves, it means that everyone can have self confidence.
Here’s the paradox though -
We often wait to feel confident to do something, while truly, it works the other way around. Doing something with the presence of doubt / fear is the way to build self confidence.
Confidence comes from being willing to experience challenging emotions, which is precisely what we experience when we step into the unknown.
When I just started my coaching business I remember doing 10 discovery calls and one after another getting a ‘no’. I could have made it mean something about me and just give up, but I kept going. As uncomfortable as it was at the time, as much as it made my skin crawl, looking back it was the biggest gift I could have given myself. It was the gift of building self confidence. I was willing to meet my fears, face my inner critic, sit with the feeling of rejection and carry myself through it all. It’s what gave me the strength and resilience to build my business.
This is the healing journey...
We heal by building our trust in ourselves, by building our self-confidence, by knowing and choosing to believe that there’s no bad feeling out there. There is NO feeling that we can’t survive. Just ones that are likely to make us feel so uncomfortable and that’s okay.
You can do uncomfortable things.
So Naama, let me say it once again: self-confidence doesn’t come from talent, upbringing, experience, having done a thing a thousand times. Self confidence comes from self awareness, self knowledge, self connection and willingness to ‘do the work’ and feel the discomfort that comes with going out of our comfort zone.
When we are willing to feel it all, we go all in. We engage with our goals and dreams courageously, take bold actions and do the next right thing, so we can build the life we truly want.
Isn’t it funny? we fear the emotion so we don’t do the thing, which means we don’t build the trust or confidence in ourselves to do the thing, which strengthens our belief that we can’t do the thing...
Does it resonate with you?
If you want to start cultivating inner confidence, resilience and self trust, and, if you’re ready to ‘do the work’, I'm here for you and I'd be honoured to support you. So much of the work I do with my clients is around building up this inner strength from deep within. Check out my private coaching program and my group coaching program Finally ME for more details.