I’m lucky in that I’ve always been a fairly confident person, although that confidence has grown increasingly as I’ve gotten older. Over the years I have actively worked on building confidence, especially when I’m in a depressive episode or am struggling with anxiety. I have found some ways to boost confidence that can be really helpful.
1. Dress for YOU
When you’re getting ready in the morning, whether you go out to work or school, or you’re at home, dress in clothes that make you feel the most like yourself. Wear what you feel most confident in. Wear what makes you feel that your appearance reflects who you are on the inside, rather than what society expects you to be. You don’t have to fit in with others, but you also don’t have to stand out. You just need to be you. Whether that’s wearing makeup and fancy clothes, or wearing jogging bottoms and some trainers.
Starting off the day wearing something you really feel good in can help to set the mood for the day. Even though I work from home, I get dressed and do my makeup in the morning because it makes me feel good. It makes me feel more awake and alive, ready to tackle the day ahead.
2. Stop negative thoughts in their tracks
If you have a negative thought about yourself, actively stop yourself. You can even say ‘STOP’ out loud or in your head if it helps (it does for me). Then actively replace that negative thought with something positive about myself. That can be hard when you’re feeling really low, but actively making yourself find something positive can be so helpful. It gets easier over time.
3. Don’t attach meaning to other’s judgements
Unfortunately, many people can be nasty and think they have the right to place judgements on others. I’m blessed that I don’t care about what others think, unless it’s those I love. That makes life so much easier. If you do struggle with other people’s judgements getting to you, try to remember that no one is perfect. This can be a tough one, but try to remember that everyone is human. Nobody has the right to judge anybody else. You are worthy. You are important. You are special in your own way. No matter what anybody else thinks or says.
4. Practice self-care
Practising self-care each day can make a big difference to your mood. I find that I feel so much more confident when I’ve showered, gotten dressed, done my skincare, eaten well and gone to bed on time. These can seem like little things, but they really can make a big difference.
5. List three positive things
Whether you write it down or just list it in your head, thinking of three achievements you made that day can be a real confidence-boosting end to the day. These achievements can be as small or large as you like. If you got dressed today, that’s an achievement. If you went to work, that’s fantastic. If something went wrong during your day, but you managed to get through the day that’s an achievement. It might feel as though there’s nothing to celebrate, but if you look hard enough you’ll see that there are things you can praise yourself for. If you do this regularly, it becomes a positive habit and can help you shift your mind to thinking more positively about yourself.