I was just talking to a client the other day that said:
“Julie, you’re so confident - I don’t know how you do it, but I feel like I could never be that confident.” <<
I'm not kidding when I say, I hear this a lot. So, today I wanted to offer up some advice about how I’ve learned to gain confidence in my own life…because I wasn’t always this sure of myself. The problem is that confidence is not just a simple problem with a simple solution. It’s not like you can say a few affirmations, meditate a handful of times and POOF! You’re suddenly confident. It doesn't work like that 👇
When I sat down to write today’s email I thought; How do I encourage someone to have
confidence? How can I give something that I know has to come from within?
But that’s when I thought to myself: I may not be able to GIVE you confidence, but maybe I can help you see your own confidence in a new light. Maybe I can offer a new way of looking at confidence, a new angle that might allow some of you to finally have that light bulb moment - and make all the difference.
So I asked myself: What exactly is confidence? Where does it come from? And how do you relate to it? <<
I thought about all the times l call upon my confidence:
When I walked out on the stage for my bikini competition.<<
>>Whenever I speak up and share my opinion at a social gathering.
Every time I share on social media or hit send on an email to you.<<
>>When I walk into a room full of strangers and have to introduce myself.
Each one of these moments requires confidence. And when I looked even closer at each of these situations, I realized that in each of those moments, the thing that allows me to walk confidently or speak confidently or share confidently is that I have built up trust with myself.
Confidence is about being able to trust yourself.
- Did I trust that I put in the hard work to wear that bikini ?
- Do I trust that my opinions are well thought-out and sincere when I speak up?
- Do I trust that I believe in my message enough that even if no one likes it or shares my email, that I won’t stop putting it out there?
- Do I trust that even if I introduce myself to a stranger and they have no interest in what I say or do that it won’t affect my self-image?
>>The trust you have with yourself is what your confidence is built on.
So, if confidence rests on trust, how do you build trust within yourself? Because if you can understand how to build trust, then maybe you can better understand how to boost your confidence too. Make sense?
Now how do you build trust with yourself? I think the best way to understand it is to look at how you build trust with other people. When you consider how, it’s actually built through a series of events, exchanges and small moments such as:
- Honoring our boundaries, if we say no - they don’t push us
- Being reliable - showing up when they say they will
- By holding us to our highest self - keeping us lovingly accountable
- Keeping our secrets sacred - they don’t share our business
- By showing integrity - not just talking about it, but by living it, even when things get tough
- Being compassionate and non-judgmental - when we need it the most
- By choosing to see the best in us - generously giving us the benefit of the doubt
Through all of these actions, other people demonstrate to us that they are, in fact, trustworthy - hence we build up confidence in our relationship with them. So, now turn all of these back onto yourself… and begin to demonstrate to yourself that you are deserving of trust, and the self confidence you want so much, will follow.
- Create and honor your own boundaries: Saying NO when you need to, protecting the time you set aside for yourself, etc.
- Prove to yourself that you’re reliable: Keeping the promises you make to yourself, not just once, but over and over.
- Show accountability when you’ve come up short: Acknowledge your short-comings, apologize and move on.
- Keep what is sacred to you, sacred: Not using hurtful words and thoughts to others about yourself
- Show integrity: Practice your values in tough situations rather than just professing them
- Show yourself compassion and stop judging yourself at times when you need help: Eliminating negative self-talk in your weakest moments
- By giving yourself the benefit of the doubt: assuming the most generous thing about yourself, choosing to see the best of you.
Oftentimes we think of confidence as something that’s dependent upon the behavior of other people.<<
That our level of confidence in any situation relies on whether or not other people will accept us or reject us…. But that’s just a practice in giving away our power.
Instead, we have to think about confidence as an inside job. We have to build up our own self trust, moment by moment, event by event. Then we will build up enough trust to KNOW that the actions or responses from other people won’t prevent us from going after our dreams. Finally, our inner selves will then feel safe enough to create, and go forward confidently.
So let me ask you… How’s your confidence? Do you have trouble trusting yourself? Is it because you break your promises to yourself? Because you’re afraid you’ll judge yourself if you put yourself out there? Is it because you have trouble living your values in moments that are challenging?
Whatever it is, I want you to identify it and decide one way you can start building more trust in yourself. Maybe it’s a commitment to talk more kindly to yourself or to make it your mission to follow through on your next promise no matter what.
>>Remember, the way to build your confidence is to first prove to yourself that you have your own back - and you’ll do that by building trust in yourself.