Self confidence is sexy. This is a common saying that we hear often, and goes hand and hand with other trending buzzwords, all seeming to evolve around self-love. While this is good advice, it is certainly easier said than done. Everyone really is their own worst critic, and you would be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t want to improve something about themselves, appearance or otherwise. Fortunately, while self-improvement mole hills may feel like mountains, most of the time they really aren’t. There are plenty of things that you can do all on your own to improve your own self confidence.
Diet and Exercise Changes
Let’s start by addressing the elephant in the room. Most women feel that they need to lose weight, or be more toned, or have a flatter stomach. While this is most likely the result of the media pushing an insane aesthetic on women, the fact of the matter is that it affects millions of women on a deep emotional and mental level. It may well be healthier for the media to stop pushing this unrealistic body type, and fortunately that change has started, but this “ideal body type” isn’t going to go away that quickly, and if you are one of the people affected with poor self-esteem as the result of this, there are positive changes you can make to love the way you look.
Making changes to your diet or implementing exercise into your daily routine is a simple and effective way of making yourself feel better- and not just outwardly. While losing weight and toning muscle is a direct result of making these changes, you will also likely experience a boost in confidence emotionally and mentally that comes from knowing that you are working hard and taking care of yourself. In fact, implementing a good routine of self-care is one of the most beneficial self-esteem solutions. It can even lower anxiety and depression.
Another benefit of a good diet and exercise is the internal reward. Fueling your body with nutrient rich foods instead of junk and getting regular exercise can have a major impact on how well your body functions. These changes can lead to more restful sleep, less stress, better heart health, higher levels of cognitive function, and a major regulation in hormone levels which control everything from fertility to how shiny your hair can be. Finally, neurological health is linked to diet and exercise in major ways. Confidence centers in the mind, so having good brain function is key to having the self esteem you have always wanted.
Set Goals for Self-Improvement
Not all self-esteem issues are focused on appearance. In fact, more men report feeling self-conscious about their career or financial standing then the way they look. Feeling that you are successful and have a purpose is a huge factor in how you feel about yourself. For this reason, setting achievable goals is a very successful self esteem solution.
Learning how to manage your finances or giving yourself a timeline for applying to your dream job can be a major confidence booster. Many websites are easy to access at home on your own that can teach you effective strategies for how to begin saving money, investing in the stock market or even the simplest of financial strategies like learning how to make a budget. Financial stability can also reduce stress and allow you to see where you can cut spending on silly things- like eating out- and free up some money for other things that can make you feel great- like travel.
Applying for a better job or working toward developing the skills you need to pursue your dream job can do wonders for your confidence. It’s important to remember to give yourself a realistic timeline, though, because nothing can tank your self esteem quite like failing at a goal. If you just started your first professional job and know that you need to give yourself time to get the quality experience you will need to move into a new role or a position at your ideal company, then giving yourself a few years is realistic and gives you time to put in the footwork.
Learn New Skills
Learning a new skill can skyrocket your self-confidence, and there is no shortage of resources available to learn those skills. Anything from learning how to be a better conversationalist, cooking a great meal, or even enrolling in a degree program can help you develop yourself and learn your strengths which will inevitably have an effect on your self-esteem.
Developing interpersonal skills can be incredibly beneficial- not only for your self-esteem, but also to strengthen your personal and professional relationships. Interpersonal skills may sound intimidating, but many of these skills are very simple. Some examples of these types of skills include learning how to make good eye contact during a conversation or interview, learning how to how great posture and body language, and even learning how to ask effective questions. Using these skills will help you to appear more confident, and as a result, they will help you feel more confident. Additionally, learning to communicate effectively will reduce stressful situations such as miscommunications with friends and family, or even unclear expectations with an employer.
Learning how to cook, paint, meditate, write, or a multitude of other skills can be very effective at developing your character. Learning who you are, what you enjoy, and what you’re good at is fundamental to having great self-esteem. Many people have reported having poor self-esteem because they don’t feel that they know who they really are. The combination of exploring interests combined with the dedication of learning can help you to feel good about the person that you are.
Finally, one of the best ways to develop new skills is by going to school! The number of different classes gives you a huge variety when deciding what you want to learn, and the ability to be taught by an instructor instead of self-teaching can allow you to really master and absorb your new skillset. Additionally, the skills you learn in the process of getting a degree can help you to achieve more in your professionally life. Even if you don’t want to commit to a degree program, you can sign up for a class or two at your local community college. This will give you more flexibility when choosing what you want to learn. Many schools offer interesting courses, such as dance, theater, pottery, or languages.
The secret to have great self esteem is really to develop who you are and loving that person. Showing up for yourself and treating yourself and body well, learning your strengths, and committing to growing as a person are all ways that you can teach yourself to have the kind of confidence you have always aspired to.