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For most people, confidence can be a lifelong struggle.
Learning to love yourself is much easier said than done, and our childhood insecurities have fun little ways of popping up at seemingly the worst times.
But there are little ways that you can work on your self-esteem that are actually a lot easier than you might think.
Not everything is going to work for everyone. The trick is to find the thing that works for you and to keep at it! Because building your confidence isn’t something that happens overnight. But it *is* possible.
So check out our 10 ideas to build your confidence below.
1. Cut Yourself Some Slack
When self-esteem is low, we have a tendency to be super self-critical. But we need to substitute that criticism with compassion.
So, next time you’re being hard on yourself, try to catch yourself in the act of negative self-talk and start thinking about all the little things you love about yourself instead. This is going to be difficult at first, but with practice, it’ll become more natural.
2. Embrace Your Mistakes
There can be a lot of pressure, especially for women, to try and be perfect. We’re constantly being bombarded with photoshopped images of celebrities, inspirational quotes about Beyonce, and societal ideas of what we should and shouldn’t be.
But none of us are perfect. So, next time you make a mistake, try to take a step back to give yourself a better perspective. Because even though a mistake can feel like life-and-death in the moment, it can end up being a blessing in the long run.
3. Identify Your Strengths
Next time you’re feeling hard on yourself, try to focus instead on what you’re good at. Sometimes it can be helpful to make a list that you can have on hand for whenever you’re feeling down.
Maybe you’re really good at writing or painting. Or perhaps you’re a generous friend or daughter. Even if the things you’re good at seem little, it’s still important to give yourself credit and celebrate your strengths.
4. Accept Compliments
For a lot of women, our knee-jerk reaction can be to reject a compliment. It can feel awkward to accept a compliment, especially from strangers. But next time someone gives you a compliment, don’t brush it off. Instead, say a simple “thank you” or “that’s so nice of you to say”.
Eventually, your impulse to deny compliments will fade and you might start to believe the compliments that people give you.
5. Know the Things You Can Change, Accept the Things You Can’t
Pretty much everyone has something they wish they could change about themselves. And while we’re constantly told to “embrace our flaws,” it’s ok to want to improve yourself.
But, it’s important that you focus on the things you can change rather than the things you can’t. For example, you might be self-conscious about being too tall or too short, but you’ll never be able to change your height.
Other things, however, are extremely easy to change. If you’re feeling embarrassed about your smile, for instance, you can easily make an appointment with a dentist or orthodontist (a trip to Jovan Orthodontics might just do the trick).
Or, if you’re unhappy about your acne, you can switch up your skincare routine to keep your skin gleaming and healthy
Whatever it is that bothers you, figure out if there’s an easy fix and take action.
6. Positive Affirmations (The Right Way)
Let’s be real: positive affirmations can feel super cheesy. But the truth is, if you do it right, it can actually work!
So, every morning when you look in the mirror, tell yourself something encouraging — and say it out loud! You’ll probably feel silly doing it at first. But if you say it often and enough, those positive things you say to yourself will eventually start to sink in.
7. Celebrate The Small Stuff
We tend to only congratulate ourselves when we pass significant milestones, like landing that new job. But those things don’t happen every day. Instead, try to celebrate the small wins. Maybe you got to work on time, maybe you had an amazing hair day. Those things might seem small, but they’re worth noting.
8. Cultivate Happiness
Spending our time doing things we love helps us think more positively. Pencil in a bit of you-time, every single day. It can be anything: reading, cooking, painting, having a private dance party. Maybe it’s just lounging on the couch for a while. Do what makes you happy.
9. Create a Support System
If you feel like you have people in your life who feed into your negative thinking pattern, it might be time to move on. Find friends who hold each other up rather than tearing them down. Having people you can help will also boost your self-esteem. It feels great to do something nice for someone.
10. Show Your Body Some Love
Whether or not you’re at your goal weight or your ideal size, it’s time to appreciate your body for how it actually looks today, not how you wish it looked.
So, try to find little ways to show your body self-care. It could be spending some time dry brushing or apply a rich lotion to make your skin feel healthy and supple. Or perhaps a little bit of movement like yoga or a dance party around your kitchen feels good. Whatever it is, find a way to honor your body and how it looks in the here-and-now.
This article was written by one of the members of the badass Femestella staff.