Last week we examined the difference between confidence and arrogance and looked at how to develop external confidence. This week we get to the juicy bit – how to develop lasting internal confidence.
How to develop lasting internal confidence
Developing lasting inner confidence takes time and consistent effort but it is well worth putting in the work. When I developed inner confidence it happened so gradually that I didn’t notice but looking back I can see what a profound difference it has made to my life.
Developing lasting inner confidence doesn’t mean you will always feel confident in all situations – you are human after all – but rather that the majority of the time you will feel able to deal with whatever may come your way. In my self-compassion article this is referred to as unconditional confidence.
Stop comparing yourself to others
Comparing ourselves to others is counterproductive and destructive on so many levels. It leads to either pride and arrogance, envy (a horrible emotion to experience) or insecurity which in itself is a lack of confidence.
Recognise that we all have different life experiences and abilities which have contributed to both our strengths and weaknesses. We are not better or worse, simply different.
When I first learnt assertiveness skills it literally made my confidence soar. Vocalizing your beliefs, thoughts, feelings and emotions whilst respecting others feels very validating and communicates your inherent worth.
For more of an in-depth look at assertiveness please read my article titled ‘Assertiveness; A Journey Worth Taking’.
Whether you are introverted or extroverted relationships are an important part of life and good communication skills are central to lasting inner confidence so seek out social situations where you can develop good inter-personal skills.
If you are introverted you may not love large parties but I would encourage you to seek out social situations you do enjoy. What about coffee at a cafe with friends or a night in with a movie and take out.
Learning and training
Naturally when we undergo learning and training – gaining new knowledge and skills – our confidence in our capabilities increases. If you feel that you lack either the knowledge or skill to do a job or perform a task seek out ways to learn more about that chosen field and very soon you will find your inner confidence increasing.
Experience is one of the best ways to gain inner confidence. Try to seek out ways of gaining experience in the area you lack confidence in. Should that not be possible look for opportunities to gain experience in areas which will have relevance to the area you lack confidence in. For example, I didn’t have much experience of phone dates but I had gained a lot of experience of talking on the phone.
Do you tend to compare yourself with others? Do you consider yourself an assertive person? Have there been times when learning something or gaining experience has improved your confidence? Please share your thoughts in the comments below to gain encouragement, insight and support from our community, we’d love to hear from you.
Stay tuned – next week we look at more ways to develop lasting internal confidence!