Many clients come to see me with wanting to how to increase their self confidence or self esteem and this always leads to a series of very interesting conversations
Lets start with looking at what we mean by self esteem or self confidence.
Self-esteem is usually understood as your personal evaluation of your own self worth, what you think you deserve to have in and from your life. What you currently believe you can have in your life.
We know about our own personal self esteem through our own self talk. To me, it is a belief or collection of beliefs and attitudes, about the extent to which we perceive ourselves at being totally free in the world to exercise any choice.
People who have a view of themselves which tells them they can do anything they want to in the world have high levels of self esteem.
So, in my book, it’s about your beliefs and your ability to choose whatever you want in your life. When I say choose I really do mean choose and I really do mean anything that another person can do.
If one human can do something then surely any human can do something because we are all essentially the same.
Before Roger Bannister had run the first sub 4 minute mile no one had done it but once he had done it more and more athletes accepted the belief that they too could do it and they promptly did so. There was no law of physics saying humans cold not run a mile in less than 4 minuets – it was human belief which created a belief that it was a significant barrier. Once the belief was demonstrated not to be true many people were able to run the same time and much faster.
Self Confidence is your belief about your ability to accept any personal choice and undertake it successfully.
Self Esteem ‘I deserve to have that in my life.’
Self Confidence ‘I’m acting to have what I want in my life and I know I will get it.’
Professor Raj Persaud suggests that true self-confidence comes from an attitude where you:
‘Promise yourself, no matter how difficult the problem life throws at you, that you will try as hard as you can to help yourself. You acknowledge that sometimes your efforts to help yourself may not result in success, as often being properly rewarded is not in your control.’
If you have not got the self esteem you want to have in life then think carefully why you have chosen to think that way. This is a personal belief and beliefs are just predictions about something which has not happened yet. They are only ideas and as such they are your ideas to change and adapt. What is your life going to be like when you allow yourself to choose different beliefs?
If you lack the self confidence you would like to have in your life, then look for instances in your life where you have had the confidence you now seek – get back into the thoughts feelings and behaviour of the time you were confident and simply imagine having that confidence in the new contexts you want to perform confidently in.
Everyone has had times when they have been confident and more than that everyone has seen other people acting confidently – well just imitate their behaviour language and movements, their non verbal communication and notice how much of their confidence you begin to feel .
Remember no-one ever got to feel put down by someone else without giving them permission!
They are your beliefs – you choose to have them – you can choose to have something else and as the consequences of free choice unfold for you just ask really, what is the worst thing that can happen?