The Art of Believing in You: Building Confidence
In a way, everything boils down to one thing when it comes to being successful and achieving your goals. What is it?
Believing in yourself. Simply, having the self-confidence to believe you can do anything you put your mind to.
Consider all the attributes associated with success – ambition, discipline, intelligence, great communication skills, etc. Every single one of these requires one to be in tune with themself and how they show up.
Kanye West’s latest documentary, Jeen-yuhs, highlights the artist’s ability to believe in himself and his “genius” whether others subscribe to the idea or not.
There’s a key moment in particular where Kanye explains to his fans the negative connotation of the word “overconfident” and how there’s no such thing.
Agree or not, there’s something special to be said about being confident in your craft or whatever it is you bring to the table. If you don’t believe in yourself – why would others believe in you?
Still, no one says developing the mental strength to have this confidence is easy. If it were, there’d be nothing so special about people like Kanye or Steve Jobs, Michael Jordan, and Beyonce. Even Beyonce had to start somewhere.
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When you feel like you have the skills and the talent, but you just can’t get out of your own head, there are a few things you can do to edge out your internal doubt.
The battle becomes you v. you at the end of the day, and when you win it – the opportunities are limitless.
Hours and hours and hours of practice.
Isn’t life easier when you’re prepared?
This concept can be applied to almost anything. Whether it’s a big meeting, a big game, an interview, an event you’ve been asked to speak at, etc., the hours put into preparing yourself make all the difference.
If someone asked you to brush your teeth, would you be nervous? Maybe a bit offended, but I doubt you’d be scared. How about if you had to do it in front of hundreds of people? Would it make a difference?
Probably not. Why? Because brushing your teeth (hopefully) is something you do every day. It doesn’t require a lot of thought because you’ve developed muscle memory from doing it repeatedly.
My point here is this: imagine what it would do to your confidence if you did your thing (whatever that means for you) as much as you brushed your teeth?
How many hours do you think Simone Biles puts in the gym practicing before she breaks the next Olympic record?
How many hours do you think Madonna practices a routine before an award-winning performance?
Michael Jordan was infamous for his free-throw attempts with his eyes closed.
You owe yourself the hard work first. Practice until you can do it with your eyes closed, and this is how you know you’ve reached your flow state.
Flow state, i.e., operating at your highest efficiency, goes hand in hand with having confidence in yourself.
Evolving with your comfort zone.
Everyone tells you to get out of your comfort zone, but have they ever said precisely how? Or what this even means?
Getting out of your comfort zone is to go beyond the arbitrary boundaries that your mind has created and do something you aren’t used to.
Being put in an unfamiliar environment will naturally cause feelings of discomfort. Yet as you learn to build your self-confidence, this will open new doors that’ll eventually breed new challenges… meaning more discomfort.
But these new challenges will cause you to evolve into a better you, which is needed for where you’re going. Newer goals will require a newer and better you.
Doing things like intentional practice and meditation will allow you to maintain the same level of mastery from the smallest stage to the largest arenas. You’ll learn to find calmness in storms and be comfortable no matter the situation.
Be graceful with your words.
First things first – you should talk as kindly to yourself as possible, as often as possible.
A part of believing in yourself largely depends on the conversations you have with the people you communicate with the most. And who do you talk to more than yourself?
Your mind and thoughts are the conversations you have with yourself every minute throughout the day.
In these moments, use affirmations. Tell yourself you’ll get the job, tell yourself you’re going to ace the exam; if you instead tell yourself it’s not going to happen, then you’ve already lost.
Have you ever said that you wanted a specific car, and now suddenly you see it everywhere?
Or, how about the time you saw a jacket or pair of shoes you wanted, and now it happens to be in every ad and commercial?
No, I’m not talking about Google’s algorithm, I’m talking about the amount of power your words have, and when they’re used for good, you can genuinely manifest things into your life.
The people you surround yourself with are critical here as well.
On the days that are a bit tougher and you want to be hard on yourself, it’s even more important to have support in your corner.
I like the term love bank. Every time you say something nice to yourself or receive a nice compliment, that’s a deposit into the love bank.
When you say negative things to yourself, consider it a withdrawal. And just like your actual bank account, you never want to see a negative amount.
Fill your love bank as much as possible, and make sure your circle adds to it to fuel your confidence.
Richard Williams told the world he had the greatest tennis players it’d ever seen when Venus and Serena were just 10 and 11 years old. What do you think that’d do to your confidence as a 5th grader?
Nothing stops you from being the one people write about next, which is not to say that’s even your goal. However, Lebron James didn’t think people would be writing about him either.
Believe in yourself first, and the rewards will reap themselves later.
Next: 4 Personal Growth Strategies for Generating Mental Wealth