3 Quick Tips to Improve Confidence

Is a lack of confidence holding you back from the life you want to live?

By Renae Jarrett
Renae is available: Tuesday, 8:30am – 12:30pm and Thursday, 1pm – 5pm. Renee specialises in:Anxiety, stress, workplace issues, depression, substance abuse, communication issues, grief and loss, trauma, bipolar and life coaching. You can find out more about Renae at her profile.

People come to therapy for a variety of reasons such as anxiety, depression, work stress, relationship difficulties and substance issues just to name a few. However, in my clinical experience of working with a broad range of clients and their varied issues there is a consistent issue that crops up. Time after time it is reported that a lack of confidence holds people back from engaging with life in the way that they want to. The natural result of low confidence is inaction, holding back and living a smaller life.
When exploring confidence it is interesting to understand the history of the origin of the word confidence. ‘Con’ meaning with and ‘fidence’ coming from the Latin word fides, which is the root of the words fidelity and faith. So confidence literally means ‘with fidelity’ or ‘with faith’; that is being true to oneself.
When embarking on anything new or different or challenging it is normal for difficult feelings to arise. The urge to run away from these difficult feelings and to wait for feelings of confidence is a strong temptation however this is the antithesis of a confident action because the act of avoidance has no self faith.  The best thing to do is to feel the difficult feelings fully and engage in action. Mindfulness skills can help make the full experiencing of difficult feelings manageable. It is following the action of being true to oneself that ‘’confident’’ feelings begin to emerge.
When addressing your confidence issues I encourage you to consider:

1.       Identifying what is really important to you, what really matters to you deep in your heart? Clearly articulate your values and give due consideration to how you want to spend your finite time here on earth.

2.       Reflect on things that you have already achieved. Consider things which at one time, before you attempted them filled you with difficult thoughts and feelings. For example your first day at high school or starting a new job.

3.       Have an awareness of your body language and how you communicate to others. Stand tall with your shoulders back, look people in the eyes and speak clearly. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy reveals in this TED talk how standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident can help.http://www.ted.com/talks/amy_cuddy_your_body_language_shapes_who_you_are
If you would like help and support to build your confidence and engage more fully in life please don’t hesitate to phone and schedule an appointment.

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