Confidence (Series)

HIGHLIGHTS: Living out loud; How to develop lasting confidence Part Four

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock


Last week we looked at how when we stop comparing, are more assertive, socialize more, seek to learn and build our experience we foster greater internal confidence. This week we continue to look at ways we can further develop our internal confidence.


Recognize your achievements


Whilst it’s never a good idea to be prideful, learn to recognize your achievements. This needn’t just be academic or tangible achievements but could also include the positive qualities you show to others – achievements which are just as valuable.


Write them down on a piece of paper and type them up to show you how far you’ve come whenever you are feeling run down or despondent.  You could even frame your ‘lifetime achievement award’, updating it annually, as a source of encouragement and motivation at times when you may be overwhelmed by how far you still need to go.


Remember confident people take time to recognize their achievements, realizing their contribution is valuable whilst not feeling the need to vocalize them whereas the arrogant  use their achievements as a means to brag and tend to become prideful and superior because of them.


Accept your weaknesses and strengths


To be truly confident you need to know yourself on a deep level and be self aware. You need to acknowledge your weaknesses, realizing that they don’t detract from your inherent worth, instead accepting that you are fallible, as is everyone.


Take a few moment to write down your strengths, as you look at each one think of how it has helped you and be grateful, feeling fortunate as opposed to superior.


Take a few moments to write down your weaknesses, not berating yourself for them but rather embracing them as part of who you are, someone with a lot to offer but also someone who is imperfect – someone who is human.


Be humble


To really avoid becoming prideful, superior or arrogant fostering humbleness is key. Please see below for some handy tips on how develop a humble heart:


  • Be ok to make mistakes and admit to them
  • Don’t brag – ever
  • Give credit to others freely
  • Give compliments freely
  • Seek out others opinions
  • Be open to learning
  • Be helpful
  • Be quick to apologize and forgive


Positivity and optimism


HIGHLIGHTS: Living out loud; How to develop lasting confidence Part Three

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock


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.


HIGHLIGHTS: Living out loud; How to develop lasting confidence Part Two

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock


Last week we examined the difference between self-esteem and confidence, why introverts can be just as confident as extroverts, the benefits of confidence, we dispelled the stereotypes of what it is to be truly confident and explored what genuine confidence looks like. This week we examine the difference between confidence and arrogance and explore how to develop external confidence as a means to encourage internal confidence in the long term.


Difference between confidence and arrogance


Often confidence and arrogance are thought to be close relatives however there are several key differences.


Whilst confident people acknowledge that there are those more capable and gifted than themselves, they also realize that this doesn’t diminish what they can offer. In contrast, arrogant people believe that they are superior in their abilities to almost everyone, with any indication to the contrary considered very threatening.


HIGHLIGHTS: Living out loud; How to develop lasting confidence Part One


Picture courtesy of Shutterstock


Confidence – that quality so many of us admire. During my younger years I was plagued by insecurity, often colouring how I interacted with those around me. As I grew older I naturally developed more confidence as I actively worked on my self-esteem but I still sometimes have my moments when I become a little insecure.


I remember talking to my boyfriend for the first time on the phone. I was feeling anything but confident in the lead up to the call. To help the conversation along I Googled ‘fun dating questions’ so that I wouldn’t run out of things to say. It seems funny to me now, but at the time it did wonders to improve my confidence, even although my nerves didn’t go completely. There have also been times when I have experienced inner confidence, when my insecurities faded and I felt truly comfortable with myself and my surroundings.


After having experienced this I realised here are two types of confidence, internal and external. In this series I shall briefly discuss how fostering external confidence (with internal confidence somewhat absent) can help us to develop internal confidence in the long-term. That said, we can also work on developing internal confidence, whereby external confidence naturally manifests itself. With this in mind I shall explore how to develop internal confidence in-depth, as this is by far the most powerful form of confidence because it has many deep rooted psychological benefits. Having lacked confidence in the past I definitely believe it is something we can all develop with patience and  practise.


The difference between self-esteem and confidence