“Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent.” Eleanor Roosevelt
Self belief is so important. How many things have you put off doing or not done or tried because you didn’t think you could? Many fail to believe in themselves because others didn’t
Yet self doubts creep in, don’t they? Like unwelcome guests that keep calling round simply because you played host to them before. Doubts such as:
- Can I really do this?
- Other people are better, smarter, more worthy than me.
- Someone is already doing this and I cant possibly be as good as them.
- What will other people think?
- What if I fail?
- I cant do this – this is what other people do not me.
- Who do I think I am to think I can succeed.
If you sometimes have trouble believing in yourself then hopefully these self belief tips will help.
1) Know that self belief is learnable
We can all be flexible and change and this is true in changing your self beliefs! You were born into this world with no sense of what you could or couldn’t do, just a world of stuff to learn and get on with. Then, bit by bit, life started to teach you to limit yourself. A very young child never says: “I’m not the kind of person who could…” They haven’t yet learned to doubt themselves or listen to people who tell them why its not possible
So one of the first steps is to re-examine and get rid of the limiting ideas you have about yourself; ideas that you’ve somehow collected along the way.
2) Deal with the inner chatter
When you start to doubt yourself listen, for a moment, to that little negative inner voice. Whose voice is it really? A parent’s, old school bullies? A collection of lots of different voices from different times and people? One thing’s for sure; that little inner self critical voice wasn’t yours originally. It may masquerade as belonging to you now, but it doesn’t really.
Tell yourself: “This is not me!” Then start to challenge it and just ignore it.
3) In every weakness there is a strength.
If we just focus on what is good about ourselves rather than what isn’t , then we open up opportunities for self belief. Don’t assume there’s nothing to improve about yourself. For example, if you know that you can be stubborn then find the positive in this. Stubbornness used well is called single-minded determination. If you worry a lot, know that the positive of this is that you have a powerful imagination which, in the right context, can be put to good use.
4) Develop your ‘super powers’!
Not that you’ll start flying to the rescue of stranded citizens, but the pattern of superhero powers is one of ability, courage, and competence. Write down as many super powers as you can think of – Prime your mind with ‘able words’ before you start each day, and see what happens …
As well as superhero powers, write all kinds of other positive characteristics (whether you think you have them or not). Do this before you go out. For example
I’m not just asking you to focus on your own present or even future qualities here, but just on the words. Take a few moments writing them down each day, then a few moments running your eyes up and down your list (it doesn’t matter if it’s a similar list each day). Really reflect upon what each word means to you.
You’ll be amazed how doing this will powerfully prime your unconscious mind.
5) Be your own motivational coach
If you notice negative doubts kicking off – use your rational self as a coach and the doubting part of you as the person you need to talk to.
Think what you’d say to a friend you really believe in, if they started showing doubts. Sit down and say those same things to yourself. So if you are about to go for a job interview and you ‘hear yourself’ starting to express doubts, take a few moments to sit down, close your eyes, and coach yourself:
“Look, you can do this! It’s natural to feel a little nervous, but that just means you care about what you’re doing! You’ve got all the relevant experience and qualifications! Now get in there and land this job! Even if you don’t get this job, you’re going to make me proud by being awesome!” this can help boost your confidence quickly
6) Do ‘hero training’
Hero training is a great way to increase your own self belief.
Think of a situation in which lack of self belief holds you back. Now think of your ‘hero’ – who could be a world leader, a movie hero, or the just someone down the street. Now close your eyes and strongly imagine them dealing with the situation. Now imagine being them for a few moments, experiencing that time in their shoes. Keep doing this until you notice you can start to transfer a sense of their qualities to yourself.
7) Create a powerful vision of yourself
True self belief actually comes from developing the vision of what it is you need to believe you can do or be.
Get into the habit of sitting down, closing your eyes, and watching yourself behaving decisively, calmly, and strongly. This powerful visualization exercise means you can learn from yourself how to be confident, have self belief, and behave in ways which maximise chances of success. Imagine you are viewing yourself on a TV screen. The ‘you’ in the screen is showing the you watching how to act with self belief. The more you do this, the more you’ll find that you’ll quite naturally start to become like the ‘you’ in the movie.
An important part of self belief comes from knowing your weaknesses and being relaxed about them. focusing on your strengths and using your toolkit to achieve your success. Creating a vision or dream board can also helo so you can actually see it everyday!
Self belief gives you the freedom to make mistakes and cope with setbacks by seeing them for what they are: temporary setbacks, not the end of the world. And something else you’ll notice: As your self belief grows, people around you start to believe in you more, too.