How to increase self-confidence in 6 steps
The confidence in yourself (self-confidence) is necessary for you to achieve the goals you set and is key to your well-being, because it is closely related to self-esteem.
People who have confidence in themselves manage to develop their life projects or professional projects, because they are individuals who know how to take certain risks, make difficult decisions and are highly resilient, that is, They know how to overcome the negative situations that can occur throughout their lives .
Self-confidence and self-esteem are not the same
Many people think that self-confidence and self-esteem are the same. But although both concepts are related, they are two different terms with clearly differentiated implications .
Self-confidence or self-confidence is l to an appreciation of the capabilities you have and focuses on the beliefs you have regarding the ability and the ability to succeed in a given context. While self-esteem is the general feeling of how valuable you are as a whole and refers to the appreciation you have about yourself.
If you have not been clear about this difference, imagine a salesman or salesman who knows that he does his job very well. He has no doubt of his great ability to seduce customers and knows that he has the gift of people that not everyone has. Thanks to this, he carries out his work perfectly, so he fully trusts himself when carrying out this task.
Now, this person has low self-esteem, because when he comes home after a long day of work, he thinks: "I do not have a partner, nor can I save enough money to buy a house. I'm a failure. " As you can see, he trusts himself and knows that he is a great commercial. However, he is not comfortable with himself, and regardless of whether this assessment he makes is correct or not, the global image he has about himself is negative.Related article: "The 4 types of self-esteem: do you value yourself?"
Confidence in yourself: the theory of self-efficacy
One of the great theorists of self-confidence is Albert Bandura, who formulated his theory of self-efficacy (which means, grosso modo, something very similar to self-confidence) as part of his Social Learning Theory.
His research on the social learning of human beings allowed him to identify other cognitive components that facilitate the process of change and influence the formation of intentions and in the motivational self-regulation . One of these components is perceived self-efficacy or the perception of self-confidence.
Bandura says that the development of self-confidence is made up of four components :
- Execution achievements : the experiences of the past are the most important source of self-confidence information, because they allow to verify the real domain.
- Vicarious experience or observation : refers to modeling, that is, seeing (or imagining) other people successfully performing certain activities
- Verbal persuasion: Verbal persuasion is important, especially in those people who already trust in themselves and need only a little more confidence to make an extra effort and achieve success.
- Physiological state of the individual : Individuals often interpret high anxiety states as signs of weakness or poor performance. On the other hand, humor or positive emotional states will also have an impact on how one interprets experiences.
How to improve the confidence in yourself?
But, What steps can you follow to improve self-confidence? Here is a list of 6 steps to improve your self-confidence:
1. Live the situations in a positive way
As you have seen, for Bandura, verbal persuasion is a very important element in the development of self-confidence. So, Be positive even if you are going through a period in which you feel that things do not go as you want . Stop focusing on the problems and focus your energy towards solutions and positive changes.
Low self-confidence is often associated with thoughts of failure and negative thoughts that mediate between you and your goals. If you are constantly repeating to yourself that you are not up to the task, all you will achieve is the "self-fulfilling prophecy". So, even in unpleasant moments, automotivate.Recommended article: "The 30 best motivating phrases"
2. Be prepared
It can happen, for example, that you have to make a presentation at the university and you notice that you do not have enough confidence in yourself. In these types of cases, what really works is to prepare the presentation well so that, when the day comes, trust fully in your possibilities .
Another example may be that you have started to work face to face with the public, and as part of your work you have to give a welcome speech to the clients. Since you have never done this type of task, you may not have full confidence in yourself. In this case, you can prepare the speech well, and, in this way, you will feel comfortable and safe in front of the clients.
Whatever is on your list of goals, Be well prepared and feel that you control what you do increases your self-confidence .
3. Make a list of what you have already accomplished and remember it
As in the first point, the difficult moments can make you doubt and cause that the confidence in yourself is diminished .
And it's that life is full of changes, and sometimes it's hard to stay on top. In cases like this, It is ideal to have a list of what has been achieved so far Regarding the goal you have, because visualizing your progression can help you to self-motivate yourself in complicated moments.
The motor of self-confidence is the action : if you dare to act, then you gain self-confidence. Bandura, in his theory of self-efficacy, talks about "execution achievements", that is, experiences are the most important source of self-confidence information.
It may happen that, even before acting, you are already visualizing failure. Well remember: if you do not act, you lose 100% of the chances of achieving what you want .
5. Accept any failure of the past
And what happens if you act and it goes wrong? As well, the achievements of execution are the perception that we have of our victories and failures . With perception I mean the assessment you make of the events that have happened. If it has gone wrong, we must accept it and also see the small successes, which surely there are, even in the failures.
Self-confidence only develops if we manage to overcome the obstacles that we put ourselves: on the one hand, resignation (which has to do with acting), and on the other hand, criticism. See successes as the sum of our failures can help us gain self-confidence .
6. Observe successful people
Bandura's theory of self-efficacy states that vicarious experience or observation is another key element of self-confidence. Observing or imagining other people to carry out certain activities successfully can positively influence your self-confidence .
This is one of the techniques used in coaching to increase the confidence of the clients, since it is useful when the latter do not have a great knowledge of their own abilities or have little experience in the task to be performed.