Self-confidence is a very handy tool. Once it has been lost to you…it’s absence can wreak havoc on your life and relationships. There are several ways one can loose self-confidence. Self confidence is destroyed by negative self talk, incorrect interpretation of events, limiting beliefs about one’s self and incorrect thinking patterns.
Many factors affect the development of self-confidence. Parents’ attitudes are crucial to children’s feelings about themselves, particularly in children’s early years. When parents provide acceptance, children receive a solid foundation for good feelings about themselves. If one or both parents are excessively critical or demanding, or if they are overprotective and discourage developing independence, children may come to believe they are incapable, inadequate, or inferior. However, if parents encourage children’s moves toward self-reliance and accept and love their children when they make mistakes, children will learn to accept themselves and will be on their way to developing self-confidence.
Surprisingly, lack of self-confidence is not necessarily related to lack of ability. Instead, it is often the result of focusing too much on the unrealistic expectations or standards of others, especially parents and society. Friends’ influences can be as powerful or more powerful than those of parents and society in shaping feelings about one’s self.
Any discussion of confidence should include information on self-esteem. While self-confidence is the knowledge that you can succeed at something, self-esteem is the capacity to like and love your self, and feel worthwhile, irrespective of all the ups and downs of life. It is your values, beliefs and personal philosophy by which you define your personal worth.
So, how do we regain our self-confidence once it is lost? Glad you asked. It can be cultivated and developed by incorporating certain positive influences. Here are four that you can use right now!
Don’t define yourself through comparisons.
We tend to make comparisons with others based on our feelings–feelings of admiration or feelings of inferiority, for example. Whatever skills you believe you’re missing, when you compare yourself with others, you are defining yourself. Instead, look at others objectively and realize that they are not perfect, either.
Identify and celebrate your unique strengths.
Despite their success at work, many successful women believe they lack the very qualities their bosses and peers have in abundance. Have a sit-down with yourself and identify all the skills and talents and accomplishments you have brought to this position. Stop concentrating on being a replica of others, and embrace being an original.
Take your workplace culture into consideration. (Impostor Syndrome)
Impostor syndrome can be defined as a collection of feelings of inadequacy that persist even in face of information that indicates that the opposite is true. It is experienced internally as chronic self-doubt, and feelings of intellectual fraudulence. Sometimes impostor syndrome is not just about your fear of not measuring up to everyone around you. One’s work environment and company culture also plays a role in helping newcomers, women, minorities, and others, such as introverts, feel part of the team. For example, your supervisors and colleagues may not believe that women have the same leadership potential as men. And many companies have a culture that puts demands on women to constantly prove their worth.
Seek the perspective of others; Don’t Stay Silent.
Seek advice from a Life Strategist Coach or a trusted friend or colleague who will not allow their emotions to influence their objective assessments. Ask this person to evaluate the reasons behind your impostor syndrome behavior. They can also give you a realistic assessment and help put you in a more relaxed frame of mind, which may allow you to more easily express your thoughts and embrace your strengths. Face your fears and don’t be silent about it.
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