Reddit Gold highlights the most useful and educational content on Reddit as found on r/AutoBestOf.
Today’s post is from u/gracehv2018 who answers the question: “What small thing do you do to boost your confidence?”
I wrote this article for my clients. I hope it helps give you some strategies. And you can always send me a message and we can discuss further.
10 Steps to Getting Over Your Insecurities Starting NOW
INSECURITY, LOW SELF-ESTEEM & A LACK OF SELF-CONFIDENCE DON’T “JUST
We are not born insecure. Insecurity didn’t just happen to us one day and become a personality trait. It is a FEELING that is caused by thoughts about ourselves that have gone on for so long that they’ve become a habit. Kicking a habit like smoking or drinking requires a great deal of discipline and your habit is going to require discipline too. The good news is that you CAN get over your insecurities starting NOW! The following strategies are your playbook so sit down and take notes.
Identify your negative thoughts about yourself and write them down. Trace them as far back into your past as possible. Where did these thoughts come from?
This step is very important because your thoughts about yourself have become a habit so etched into our brain that by now they have become automatic reactions.
Now write down the opposite of each of your negative thoughts. For example, if one of them is I’m dumb, write down I’m smart, I always have been smart but the negativity, criticism and comparisons that I grew up with got me into the habit of thinking I was dumb.
You are YOU and you are unique. You can’t compare yourself to others because you didn’t have the same upbringing, environment, family as others.
I can just imagine you now, scrolling through social media and thinking Everybody is in a relationship except me. All my friends have a great career and I’m a loser.
Start wearing a rubber band on your wrist and every time your inner voice starts saying something bad about you or comparing you to someone, give the rubber band a good hard
snap and immediately think: I am NOT my thoughts. I am stronger than my thoughts. My thoughts are just a bad habit.
YOUR SELF-ESTEEM CHEAT SHEET
Make a list of your 10 best qualities. For example, I’m kind to animals. I’m good at drawing. I’m a good cook. It doesn’t matter how uncomfortable this activity makes you feel or how long it takes you to do it. This is going to be our go-to resource when the bad habit rears its ugly head.
Concentrate on your strengths, not your weaknesses. CHANGE WHAT YOU BELIEVE AND YOU’LL CHANGE WHAT YOU FEEL. Real change will occur when you realize your self-thoughts are not accurate.
Nobody knows you’re insecure, have self-esteem and self-confidence issues. So stop communicating your insecurities through your body language. When speaking to someone, look them directly in the eye. Don’t fidget with your hands or feet. Stand/sit up straight. Don’t whisper, speak up. Nobody will suspect you’re insecure unless YOU tip them off.
Stop chasing perfection. You have an image of what it is to be perfect, how your life would be if it were perfect. Perfection doesn’t exist.
Chase IMPROVEMENT instead: This week I’m going to look everyone at Starbucks, at the store, at work in the eye. Today I’m going to stop slouching in an attempt to hide.
You can’t control the actions of others but you can control the way YOU react to their actions.
Stop reacting like a victim: Of course I spilled the coffee, because I’m so stupid; I’m single because I’m not beautiful.
The minute an insecure thought crosses your mind, remind yourself it’s fear and identify what you’re afraid of at that precise moment. I can’t apply for a job because I’ll get anxious and I won’t know what to say and I won’t get it and I’ll be a nervous wreck.
Instead, step back and think: This is fear talking. What am I afraid of? Having to become independent? Having to take control of your life? Having to step out of your comfort zone?
Be real and then challenge yourself.
Insecurity goes hand in hand with self-defeat. When you start reaching for your goals, your insecurity is going to whisper self-defeating thoughts in your ear.
Ignore them and step out of that comfort zone of isolation, little by little. Feel the discomfort of having to smile at a stranger at the checkout line. Do it anyway and then feel the pride of overcoming the discomfort.
Make your challenges progressively more daring every time.
Close your eyes. Picture yourself living your ideal life. Write down exactly what that life looks like in every way: career, job, relationships, friendships, goals.
Now ask yourself: what would I be able to do if I didn’t feel like I do right now?
Make a list of all those things you would be able to do and number them because each of them is a goal. For example, I would be able to learn how to dance, like I’ve always dreamed.
Stop running away and hiding from life. Your past made you insecure. But this is the PRESENT and what you do today is going to determine your FUTURE.
You’re not Nostradamus, stop predicting a gloomy future.
You can’t get a job because every time you consider going in for an interview, your mind starts spiraling: I’m going to get super anxious and I’ll have a panic attack and then I’ll have to run out of the room and everyone will think I’m insane.
You meet someone online and they ask you out on a date: I haven’t been on a date in 3 years, I have nothing to wear, they’ll want to shake hands and my palms will be sweaty, I won’t know what to talk about and it’ll get weird.
You need to be able to tell the difference between reality and your perception. The reality is that you have the ability to prevent certain behaviors by using the strategies we’ve discussed here and others we’ll be learning later.
Take control of your life instead of predicting the future…which you can’t do.
Go out there and start becoming the strong, self-confident you that’s always been inside YOU.