So many people are lacking self-confidence today, regardless of age, sex, or profession. According to statistics, 85% of the world’s population report low self-esteem or lack of confidence at some point in their lives, which is enormous!
While some of us recognise this and take steps to improve how we feel, others often avoid taking responsibility by blaming their parents, caregivers, family, teachers, and society, or adopting a victim attitude. This only serves to keep them in a place of low self-esteem, pessimism, and negativity, and so the vicious circle continues.
I’m a firm believer that our outer world reflects our inner world, meaning positive thoughts and behaviours lead to a positive life. This blog is designed to help you start taking positive steps which will lead you to feel so much more confident in yourself!
The Mind-Heart-Soul Connection
If you’re anything like I was, you’ve probably tried several different things already, like self-help, reading personal development books, and talking with friends, yet you still don’t feel confident enough to make the changes your heart and soul desire.
Research into neuroplasticity (the process by which the brain can adapt to new ideas and learn new tasks) reveals that we can literally rewire our brains in ways that affect our thoughts and behaviour at any age. Neurolinguistic programming (NLP) is a great complementary therapy to neuroplasticity exercises and as an NLP practitioner, I’ve been trained to help your brain break out of an unhelpful loop of thoughts in order to find a new experience which then becomes a new habit.
As a sensitive, intuitive empath, I also know that we get the best results when connecting our brain to our heart and soul. This is something that I’ve been openly sharing and teaching since the day when I understood the importance of bringing all three into alignment.
The 7 Things I Worked On
I’ve always loved acronyms and creating my own definitions based on people’s names, for example! When I first started teaching self-confidence, the word CONFIDE popped into my mind to be used as an acronym. Each letter refers to a specific thing that I invite you to look at if you want to feel more confident in yourself.
“C” stands for Communication.
Yes, I know, it’s a big topic, so I’ve narrowed it down to three things that really worked for me: our appearance, journalling and expressing our opinions. You may wonder why I include our appearance in communication – it’s really simple for me because the clothes we wear, the colours we choose and the way we move our bodies send out a particular message about us. It’s often been suggested to wear red and stand up straight if we want to show strength and confidence.
Journalling is one of my favourite ways of getting in touch with my soul and the Universe. I journal most mornings and find it very therapeutic. It enables me to freely express myself without fear of judgement from others and to let go of certain thoughts that are holding me back. Some of my coaching workshops, lives and programmes have come to me while journalling!
It’s essential for us all to be able to express our opinions freely but unfortunately, this isn’t always possible. Sometimes the lack of confidence stops us from speaking our truth and if this is the case for you, how about trying an easy technique that I mention in the article I wrote for International Coaching News? It’s called Non-Violent Communication and one of the models I recommend you follow is this:
“When __(describe the situation)__, I feel __(you’re your feelings)__ because __(explain why you feel like this)__. How about __(make a suggestion for positive change)__?”.
“O” is for Optimism.
Did you know that we are the sum of the five people that we spend the most time with?! Take a look at who those five are and see how optimistic they are. Would you say that you surround yourself with positive thinkers or not? If not, maybe now’s the time to change that!
Optimism is also a question of thinking and speaking positively. This doesn’t mean wearing rose-tinted glasses or convincing yourself that everything’s wonderful; for me, it’s more a question of being careful of the words we use and the thoughts we have and changing them if they’re not that positive. I find it fascinating that the French often speak negatively and also have one of the highest depression rates in Western Europe. They’ll say things like “less big” instead of “smaller” and “the problem is” (even if it’s not a problem!). Is this a pure coincidence? I personally don’t think so.
One way to increase your optimism is to practice gratitude. I have a little notebook in which I write everything that makes me grateful, and I read it when I’m feeling a little down. I can guarantee that I feel so much better after just a few minutes!
“N” stands for Natural.
How often do you allow yourself to just be yourself? To be vulnerable? To go out with no make-up on? (This was a biggie for me!) To be authentic?
When we learn to embrace who we naturally are, life becomes so much easier and tends to flow to us… naturally. This is the subject of my masterclass, From Imposter to Authentically You, which you can purchase here.
“F” is for Faith.
Now, when I say faith, I don’t mean religion. I mean faith in ourselves, in our abilities. When our confidence is low, it’s difficult to have faith and we can sometimes feel like we’re so overwhelmed with doubt that we’ll never be able to change.
One remedy to this is to remember our wins and successes, whether at work, in our business or in our personal lives. They can be big or small, it really doesn’t matter, but the main thing is to be aware of what they are. I recommend doing something like the gratitude practice – write down all your wins and successes now so that you have them available on a bad day.
“I” stands for Intelligence or rather Emotional Intelligence.
There are four levels of emotional intelligence: the first level is recognising our own feelings; the second level is managing our own feelings; the third level is recognising others’ feelings; and the fourth level is helping and supporting others to manage their own feelings. Most of us find the first two levels difficult, let alone recognising and supporting others’ feelings, but one thing is sure: it’s easier when we know how to recognise and manage our own. Once we’re able to manage them, our self-confidence improves.
“D” is for Dare.
Have you seen the video, Dare Change? It always gives me the chills when I watch it, about feeling the fear and doing it anyway. We very often don’t dare do something that really lights us up for fear of rejection, judgement and/or criticism. One of the things I teach about fear is that it can be either real or imaginary. A real fear is based on past experiences whereas an imaginary fear is based on our projection into the future and the possible consequences of our actions.
I curated a downloadable bundle for women in business, including an EFT (tapping) sequence and a guided meditation, to help them release any fears and show up as their true selves. If you’d like to know more, just click here.
“E” stands for Experience.
I remember when I first read the quote “Life doesn’t happen to you, it happens for you”. Up until then, I’d looked at some of my life experiences as a victim, as if I had no responsibility for what had happened and as if there was nothing positive to be gained from them. This way of thinking kept me stuck until I was in my late thirties, and I was “forced” to reevaluate my life when I developed a massive slipped disc at the bottom of my spine which paralysed my right leg. You can read more about this episode of my life in the book Evolving on Purpose.
The first thing that I needed to do was to give myself time to heal, to understand what had brought me to that point and to learn from my mistakes. It was a very humbling experience and one that put me on the right path. I decided to quit my job and set up my own business, and later train to become a coach in performance and NLP, an EFT practitioner, and an energy healer.
Life also encourages us to learn from others. We all have so much to share, to make this world a place where love and community reign!
I’ll leave you with this question (after all, I am a coach!): are you ready to CONFIDE?
If you’ve enjoyed reading this blog post, please share. If it’s brought up the need or desire to work on your own self-confidence, I invite you to reach out to me, either by sending me a message or booking your SOUL call, a 30-minute call to explore how I can best help you.
– Sarah x