Yes, you can! Build up your confidence

Why Self-Confidence Matters

It often seems that confidence is elusive, like a smoky mirage. Sometimes, it feels magical and wonderful; other times it can be frustrating.

But I’ll let you in on a little secret: you can build up your self-confidence without having to resort to any crystal. ‘How?’ you ask.

It’s simple.

Start by recognizing that confidence is a skill you can learn. You set a goal and take small steps each day to work towards it.

Keep reading to find out more about self-confidence and why it matters.

What Is Self-Confidence?

Self-confidence isn’t tangible. You can’t touch it and say, “This is confidence.”

It’s something we get a feeling for when we, or others, have it.

Likewise, we can recognize when someone lacks it. Even when they try to attempt to compensate for it, we sense it and feel bad for them.

The good news is that self-confidence is a soft skill, which means you can learn it and apply it to your daily life. It’s not fixed, like your height for example. It’s mainly based on your mindset and the actions you do to follow through.

You can boost your confidence and self-esteem by trusting your abilities. Seeing yourself succeed in your mind is the first step in making better decisions. Then, when your decisions make your life better, your confidence gets a nice little boost. And round and round it goes.

Bear in mind that confidence is infectious. Even though we can’t see it, we still sense other people’s confidence levels in the way they behave and speak.

When someone is confident, they exude excitement and energy. You’re motivated to work hard and feel that same energy.

The downside is it goes both ways. When one person lacks confidence, it can deflate everyone around them. They just get the sense that there’s no point in trying.

Why Does Self-Confidence Matter?

There are different reasons why being confident can improve your life. Below, you’ll find a few examples of how it can make you a happier, more fulfilled individual.

Allows You to Take Positive Risks

We all need the confidence to bring balance and a sense of direction in our lives. Making a conscious decision to develop your confidence will allow you to take positive risks. It gets you out of your comfort zone and puts you on the path to success.

The trick is understanding your own strength. You have to believe that you can master whatever skill you’re striving towards. Yes, it’ll be weird and difficult in the beginning. Yes, you’ll make mistakes along the way. So what?

That’s what life is about. This is what boosts your self-esteem and makes you better at everything you do.

Empowers You to Embrace Your Failures

We all make mistakes. We all fail and meet obstacles in our lives.

The key is to understand that failures are a necessary part of progress. Read that again and really take it in.

Often, we feel that when we fail, it’s the end of the journey. But that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

To fully embrace your failures, you have to think of them as detours. When you’re forced to change lanes or take a detour that doesn’t mean the entire journey is over. It just means you’re taking a different path, but you’ll get there eventually.

Now, why do some people succeed after failing and others don’t? Those who manage to learn from their mistakes. They go over what went wrong and find a way to fix it.

In other words, they use their failures to their advantage. They use them to prop them up and give them the push they need to keep going on their path.

Let’s take a second to think about Thomas Edison and Michael Jordan. What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of these two names? Success? Fame? Glory? All of the above?

How about failure? You’re probably saying to yourself, ‘These are two of the most prominent members of society. They haven’t failed.’

Well, sorry to burst your bubble, but they have—many times, in fact. Yet, they’re smart enough to use their failures as stepping stones to aim higher and work harder. Imagine our much our lives would have been impacted if these two men had given up every time they failed!

One of Edison’s quotes about refining the light bulb is, “I haven’t failed. I’ve found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

Enables You To Trust Yourself

Many times, we can be our own worst enemies. We critique every move, every word, and every thought over and over again.

In moderation, it can be a great incentive to do better. Although, this only works if we treat ourselves with the same kindness and empathy, we show others. Sadly, it doesn’t happen very often.

The best way to break out of that negative self-talk is to have faith in yourself. Have faith in your decisions. Even if you made mistakes in the past, that doesn’t necessitate future failures.

Own up to your bad decision, embrace it, and move on. That’s now part of your DNA; it’s helping shape a stronger, more resilient person.

Imagine it being part of your arsenal or a superpower. Now, you’ve turned your mistake into something that can make you more resilient and less anxious.

A Final Note

Self-confidence is an integral part of who you are. Understanding why it matters can mean the difference being happy and being miserable.

Having that self-assurance can help boost your relationships and career. You’ll also be able to inspire others to become happier, more fulfilled individuals.

Could Your Child Have Too Much Self-Esteem?

Parenting in the Middle Ground

As with most parenting challenges, we are called upon to strike an all-too-elusive balance between two extremes: the tough love approach, typified by “tiger mom” Amy Chua, who advocates criticism, corporal punishment and name-calling of children who must earn their self-esteem through accomplishments, and the phony praise approach, common among some modern American parents, who cheer their children on whether they’ve earned it or not.

There’s more to effective parenting than either extreme offers. Here are a few ways to find the middle ground:

Keep it Real. High self-esteem isn’t a problem – it’s false self-esteem that knocks kids off course. Instead of applauding your child’s every move, reserve your praise for noteworthy accomplishments and behaviors. Praise should go beyond accomplishments to include personality traits that make your child who they are, such as being a good friend, telling the truth and working hard.

When you do praise your child, be specific and focus on effort rather than the end result. Telling your child you’re proud of all the effort they put in to getting an A on their test is more helpful than saying, “You’re so smart.” Knowing exactly what they did well will enhance your child’s sense of self-worth.

Encourage Strategic Risk-Taking. Self-esteem forms when children challenge themselves. Create opportunities for your child to try new things, and when fears and setbacks arise, encourage them to keep trying rather than giving up or rescuing them.

Acknowledge Strengths and Weaknesses. Children need to know that everyone has strengths and weaknesses. If you pretend your child is great at everything, this may artificially inflate their ego or send the message that perfection is expected – a set-up for low self-esteem.

Embrace Mistakes. Overprotective parents do a disservice to their children’s self-esteem. From mistakes and setbacks children develop resiliency and faith that they are worthy even if they don’t always “win.” Share your own stories of overcoming obstacles and work through problems with your child so they can be successful next time.

Love Unconditionally. Self-esteem flourishes when children know that you will always love and accept them (though you may not always like their behavior or decisions). This message comes through clearly when parents are generous with their affection and listen attentively to their children’s thoughts and feelings.

Reward Social Success. True self-esteem stems from close ties with other people. A 2012 study shows that positive social relationships during youth are better predictors of adult happiness than academic success or financial prosperity. In addition to reinforcing a child’s intellect or athleticism, celebrate their ability to empathize with or help others and encourage them to participate in activities that build social connections.

Avoid Comparisons. Your child needs to be respected for their individual talents and abilities. Resist the temptation to compare your child to their friends or siblings, even if the message is positive. Instead, emphasize your child’s strengths and help them work on their weak spots.

Set Realistically-High Expectations. Children do best when they know what is expected of them. Set clear rules and consequences and follow through when a rule is broken. This predictability lets kids know that discipline and constructive criticism aren’t personal attacks but violations of pre-established rules.

The Byproduct of a Healthy Relationship

The so-called “self-esteem movement” is not a complete abomination. Kids should feel “good enough” and “smart enough,” so long as those sentiments don’t cross the line into “better than” or “smarter than,” particularly if they’re not based on genuine accomplishments and abilities. As parents, this is one area where we can start taking it easy – no more nurturing self-esteem for its own sake but instead doing the things that naturally build self-esteem, like spending quality time as a family.

Could Your Child Have Too Much Self-Esteem?