Introverts unite!

Confidence Boosters

By 8:25 PM , , , , , , ,

Recently, an awesome friend asked me for suggestions on how to boost confidence. I initially thought she was kidding -- Me? Confident? I would much sooner be called shy than confident. However, on yet another path towards self-improvement, I remembered that I've been reading up on how to increase my self-esteem and my self-confidence lately. The epiphany was instantaneous -- whatever it was that I was doing was working! And now I am sharing them all with you (or what worked for me, at least).

  1. I've recently started becoming conscious of my posture. I used to slouch and make myself smaller when I feel intimidated, scared or just vulnerable. While it made me feel safe, it also magnified how "small" I felt about myself and presented that same notion to everyone I come across. There are numerous studies supporting the positive effect of good posture on self-evaluation and self-confidence, and really, you can't argue with science. In fact, I notice an immediate effect on my mood and my overall confidence as soon as I straighten my back, tilt my chin and smile. Try it now!
  2. I've made it a habit to be presentable for myself. There's a known adage that says,"Dress for the job you want". Well, I firmly believe on my own made up adage -- "Dress for the mood you want to be in." I'm as big a fan of sweatpants and raggedy t-shirts as the next girl but I've learned the value of wearing clothes that make me feel and look good. It's so tempting to put on whatever when you feel so distraught or depressed but don't give in! Wear that four inch stilettos if it makes you feel powerful. Put on that red lipstick. Skip the grandma underwear. The premise is to wear the things that can boost confidence and make you feel like you can take on the world, because trust me, you can.
  3. I give sincere compliments often... I don't know if you've seen the video compilation of people's reaction after being called beautiful. If not, here it is. Now watch it while I wait. Done? Isn't that video heartwarming? Whenever I compliment someone, I immediately see them smile and their faces just light up. It's an addictive sight, and I always make it a point to give a sincere compliment at least once a day. My coworker's wearing a cute blouse that matches her eyes? Complimented. My sister doing a marvelous job at juggling everything? Complimented. The cute girl on the bus with rad hair? You can bet I threw in a compliment (or two --- she did look super cute). People feel better, and seeing them look so happy makes me feel good. It's a win-win.
    • 3.a ...and surround myself with people who do the same. It's also important to note that while giving compliments is awesome, receiving compliments feels amazing too. So let go of toxic people who belittle you and your goals or find every little thing to nitpick about you. You're pretty freaking spectacular just as you are, and you need people who not only knows that but reminds you of it (often, if you're lucky).
  4. I've learned to celebrate the little things. I have a slight tendency of perfectionism when it comes to everything. But here's the thing, life is rarely ever perfect and I will never, ever be perfect, and constantly waiting on perfection has only left me feeling depressed and dissatisfied. (I mean, hello, I just wrote a sentence with a series of ands). I finished everything that I needed to do at work? Self high-five! Good hair day? 5/5. Will recommend looking at the mirror again. Skin isn't freaking out as per usual? Give myself a pat in the back. Celebrating and appreciating the little things make it so much easier to appreciate life in general. Honestly, when I miss the bus and I'm late at work and my hair looks like I've been dragged in by a cat, thinking "at least I have honey lemon tea today!" instead of "UGHHHHHHHH" tend to make all the difference between a good day and a bad one.
  5. I've learned to fake it. No one is ever going to feel confident 100% of the time, and that's okay. We're human, and emotions are nothing if not constantly changing. But when you're not feeling confident before a big public speech or asking for a raise or just doing life in general, fake it. Just act like you're confident. Smile, raise your chin up and assert yourself. Fake it till you make it, and sooner or later, you will have. Better yet, you probably already did.
How about you? What do you do to boost confidence?

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