How to Increase Self Confidence?

How to Increase Self Confidence?

A lot of my students face problems of low self confidence and they want to know as to how to increase self confidence. In this post I discuss the subject.

Understanding Self Confidence

Self confidence can be understood as comprising of two facets of our personality. First is our sense of self efficacy. This means that we see ourselves capable of mastering skills and achieving goals in a specific field. We believe that if we learn and work hard in a field we will succeed. This type of confidence leads people to accept difficult challenges, and persist in the face of setbacks. Example: A child who likes Math and can easily solve his class Math problems will accept the challenge of solving Math problems of greater difficulty of a higher class. He may not succeed immediately, but will succeed ultimately because of his self confidence!

The second facet of self confidence is the idea of self esteem. It implies a more general sense that we can cope with what is going on in our lives. We consider ourselves competent at what we do and have a sense that we can do things if we focus on them. Example: Farhan Akhtar had the belief that he could play the role of Milkha Singh in the famous movie. He believed that he could look and act like Milkha Singh. He did a great job. The most important part was his self opinion ( self confidence).

Is it Possible to Enhance Self Confidence?

Popular belief is that  it is possible to enhance self-confidence by external affirmations and positive thinking. There is some truth in this. It is most important to increase self confidence by setting and achieving goals – thereby building competence. Without this underlying competence, we do not enhance self-confidence, but build shallow over-confidence, which brings upsets and failures in life.

Bad news for the modern society and in accordance with my Guru, Stephen Covey’s philosophy is: “There is no short cut, or quick fix solution!”

The good news is that increasing self confidence is genuinely achievable. It requires focus and determination. Another good part is that the things you will do to enhance self-confidence will also build success – after all, your confidence will come from real, solid achievements.

Vital Mindset to increase Self Confidence

  • Carry out an introspection to assess your strengths and weaknesses as on date. Make a note of your strengths. Think about them every day.
  • Positive thinking: Our mind often has vivid memories of failures and successes.
Failures could be like:
    • You fell down as a child and others laughed.
    • You embarrassed yourself by some stupid behaviour.
    • You became blank when faced with a crowd.
    • You became speechless when your teacher or boss asked something you knew.
Successes could be like:
  • You recited a poem in class as a child.
  • You solved a problem on black board in class.
  • At home you solved a problem for your parents when they were stuck.
  • You hit the balloon with the air gun at a fair.

Positive thinking is to think more often about the successes than the failures. If you are facing an opponent you have lost to 9 times out of 10, think only about when you won, before facing him again. This confidence will increase your chances of success!

Enhancing Self Confidence

Wherever you are in life and whatever you are doing do the following:

  • Set small achievable goals and accomplish them with determination and focus.
  • Gradually increase the level of your goals..
  • Celebrate your success & keep remembering the small successes.
  • As you increase self confidence try to place yourself in situations in which you had failed and visualise yourself succeeding in imagination & then go ahead & do it.
  • Increase self confidence on a strong foundation of consistent hard work & successes!

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