While it is wonderful and absolutely necessary to possess personal confidence or self-confidence, is it possible to have too much?
Believe it or not, yes!
Even as most people lack enough confidence, or possess a positive self-image, there are those who overestimate their capabilities, are over optimistic, take on too much risk and end up crashing and burning.
So why am I even bringing this up?
The answer is, because in order to build true/genuine self-confidence, your self-image must be founded in reality. You must know who you are. You must have a realistic evaluation of your abilities and you must commit to continued self-improvement. Add to that learning to maintain focus, motivation and persistence, and you’re on your way!
A good way to build and maintain your self-confidence and stay focused is to set up a program or action plan for yourself. You can customize it to your own needs or you can follow the steps as I’ve presented them.
Self-Confidence Action Plan
Become aware. Know who you are and what you want. As has been said so many times – “If you don’t know where you are going, how will you know when you get there?” Take the time to figure out what your strengths, aptitudes and capabilities are and how you can to best use them to achieve personal satisfaction and fulfillment. Draw up a chart or excel spreadsheet outlining your strengths, what you enjoy doing, and how you can establish goals. List the things you’d like to do and what you have to do to accomplish them.
Some possible goals might be:
- To stay physically fit by joining a local basketball league
- Teach guitar lessons at the local YMCA/YWCA
- Start a blog on any one of interests to improve writing skills
- Join Toastmasters network and develop speaking skills
If you don’t take action or set goals, but just flail about aimlessly without purpose or focus, it won’t take long before you become disillusioned and hopeless. Those who are self-confident know what they want and they work at getting it.
Motivate Yourself. Self-confidence comes also from the ability to motivate yourself to achieve your goals. Of course, it’s easier to just procrastinate and find excuses for not putting in the effort to accomplish something. Unfortunately, this too leads to inertia, disillusionment and falling into a rut. One way you can stay on track and stay motivated is to set up a chart of must-do activities that include:
- 30-40 minutes of exercise/jogging daily
- practice guitar for 30 minutes, 3 times a week
- write one article a week for blog
- read articles and newspapers for ideas and to sharpen language skills
Take care of yourself. Even though relying on your physical appearance and good looks as a basis for self-confidence is not a good idea, it is important to look and feel your best. This means staying healthy and fit, maintaining good grooming habits and making the most of what you have. Do some research on the best styles and colors for your body type. If you need help, there are many men’s and women’s fashion magazines that can give you some great ideas. The Internet is also a helpful resource for finding the latest trends and styles. Pay attention too, to your attitude. How you walk, talk, and conduct yourself significantly reflects how you feel about yourself. A good personality, a neat and stylish appearance and a smile on your face can take you a long way towards success in career, relationships and personal accomplishment.
Develop Your Mind. And then keep developing it! Not only will people find you interesting and someone who contributes to their own knowledge and awareness, you will keep your brain sharp and active.
People who get mentally lazy and don’t continue to challenge themselves throughout life are more prone to develop dementia, Alzheimer’s and other degenerative brain diseases as they age. Self-confidence will plummet!
Make it a point to do such things as:
- brain puzzles
- playing games such as chess
- staying informed of current events
- learning about global issues
- memorize people’s names
- improve your vocabulary
Stay on Top of Things and Reinforce. Continue to assess and evaluate yourself. Self-confidence can rise and fall depending on what you’re doing with yourself. If you happen to slack off and choose not to keep improving, you will begin to feel uninspired and less confident. Even the most successful people in the world cannot, and do not, rest on their laurels because personal growth is a continuing process. Make sure, however that you do not to go overboard and put pressure on yourself to achieve. Learn to gauge yourself and balance striving to reach your goals with fun and recreation.
As you can see, self-confidence is not only an achievable goal if you set it up as a workable Action Plan, it can also be fun and extremely rewarding. Take the time to draw up your own self-confidence action plan and tailor it to your particular needs and goals where necessary. Decide which characteristics you want to develop, work on, or accentuate. Make a game of it. The process alone will stimulate your creativity and who knows what great things can happen! Enjoy the ride as you become a more confident individual who is willing to take control of his/her own destiny.
Author: Z. Hereford