You have the potential to take on the world—that’s the truth. However, you may also find that your self-confidence isn’t always there when you want it to be.
But instead of being a wallflower, what if you started seeing confidence as a muscle that needs strengthening? With the right mindset and approach, you can learn how to take on whatever challenges come your way.
Here’s a glimpse of what you should know:
- What Is Self-Confidence?
- Why Do You Need to Increase Your Confidence?
- Main Reasons for Lack of Self-Confidence
- Signs That Show Lack of Self-Confidence
- How to Gain Confidence in Yourself: 5 Tips From Marisa Peer
Learning to embody more confidence is a great statement of self-love. It’s as Marisa Peer, a world-renowned therapist and trainer of Mindvalley’s Rapid Transformational Hypnotherapy for Abundance Quest, says, “When you believe in you, everyone else believes in you.”
What Is Self-Confidence?
Self-confidence comes down to the attitude and relationship you have with yourself. You have the boldness to express your true self, the fearlessness to handle whatever life may throw at you, and the awareness that vulnerability is not a weakness.
Think about the unshakable confidence of some of the most epic movie characters, such as Tony Stark or Elle Woods. With a sense of self-assurance like that, anybody could go out there and make the world a better place by fighting for peace.
Knowing that you are enough doesn’t make you do less, but it makes you recognize that you’re worth more.— Marisa Peer, trainer of Mindvalley’s Rapid Transformational Hypnotherapy for Abundance Quest
It’s true that believing in yourself fully is an act of self-love. But it also means owning your shadows. As Brené Brown says in her book, Daring Greatly, “Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.”
It’s knowing that you may not be what others expect you to be, but that you’re confident enough and feel worthy of yourself to show up in the world as you are.
Why Do You Need to Increase Your Confidence?
When you believe in yourself, you have the courage to go out there and chase your dreams. It’s like turning your inner critic into your own best friend and becoming your most supporting cheerleader.
When you put the effort into loving who you are, you start attracting so much love, as Marisa explains in her Quest. From that point on, any of your relationships could flourish and become more meaningful.
Science also backs up the importance of confidence in your day-to-day life. For example, one study conducted by R.E. Wood at the University of Sydney suggested that confidence in oneself increases performance. Higher levels of self-esteem were shown to enrich decision-making abilities, problem-solving skills, the ability to adapt, and overall efficiency.
Making the effort to learn how to build more self-confidence is like adding rocket fuel to your journey of self-growth.
Here are a few more benefits that pop up in your life when you reconnect with your power:
- More likely to be assertive and communicate your needs
- Becoming a more effective leader
- Lower levels of stress, anxiety, and depression
- Openness to taking risks
- Showing your authenticity
- Courage to get out of your comfort zone
Imagine living your life knowing that there’s someone who’s always celebrating your success, holds you accountable, and creates a safe space for you to move forward through the hard times. And you—you’re that someone.
Main Reasons for Lack of Self-Confidence
We can gain or lose confidence for various reasons. Psychological studies have shown that the main influencing factors are:
- Experience. The feeling of confidence or lack of it is imprinted in your subconscious mind, says one 2018 study. It happens through the experience of positive and negative events. For example, let’s say you nailed a public-speaking gig after practicing a million times. The collected experience from the practice builds resilience to try something again and again until you start performing.
- Environment. Another research suggests that the way you were raised influences your self-esteem. Simply put, if you’ve grown up in an environment where your parents had low self-esteem, you’d be more likely to absorb their beliefs and behaviors like a sponge.
- Trauma. Traumatic events can make you feel like the world is a scary and unsafe place to live in. Actually, one study published in the Open Journal of Preventive Medicine found that “the onset of PTSD causes a decline in memory ability and attentional function, which interferes with one’s life and leads to self-denial, resulting in a decline in self-esteem.”
- Lifestyle choices. The healthier you choose to live your life, the more confident you’ll be to take on its challenges, study finds. This happens because your health acts like a stable foundation for everything else that comes your way. So, never neglect taking care of your body and mind with nutritious food, proper sleep, regular exercise, and emotional well-being.
Addressing the root cause of the problem is always the first step. And little by little, you head towards building a stronger, more positive sense of self-worth.
Signs That Show Lack of Self-Confidence
Harsh, harmful, critical words that you say to yourself are a major cause of depression.— Marisa Peer, trainer of Mindvalley’s Rapid Transformational Hypnotherapy for Abundance Quest
A lack of self-confidence may sometimes feel like carrying a backpack full of self-doubt. You’re unsure of what to do, and every decision that needs to be made takes a lot more effort than you’d like.
So what are the signs that show you may be lacking self-confidence? Explore the list:
- Negative self-talk
- Resistant to change
- Close-minded to opportunities
- Striving for perfectionism
- Feeling ashamed of your flaws
- Falling into the victim mentality
- Having a pessimistic outlook on life
- Feeling unable to express your thoughts and opinions
- Engaging in self-sabotaging behaviors
Fortunately, as mentioned, your confidence is like a muscle that needs a bit more training. And you can learn a few tips for self-confidence from Marisa on how to do so.
How to Gain Confidence in Yourself: 5 Tips From Marisa Peer
During her A-Fest 2015 stage talk, Marisa shared a few insights that she discovered by working with extraordinary people. She wasn’t afraid to be a more unconventional therapist and challenge the norm of what traditional therapy training taught her.
Listen in as she explains how to create phenomenal success using the power of your mind:
Additionally, you can try these tips on how to build unshakable confidence:
1. Come up with your own definition of confidence
What’s your unique brand of confidence? It’s a topic Marisa brings up in her Mindvalley Quest—what confidence means to you. Knowing your own definition of high self-esteem helps you nurture those traits of your personality.
Marisa Peer’s tip: Take a moment to reflect and ask yourself these questions:
- What does confidence look like? How does it feel?
- Do you feel confident when you put on a certain hat, coat, or pair of shoes?
- Do you feel confident when you’re in the middle of a specific activity?
- What makes you feel good about yourself?
- What do you perceive as “confidence” in others?
Find the places in your day and in your life that stand out to you as high points, where you felt calm, cool, and totally in control.
2. Tell your mind what you want it to do
A simple but powerful epiphany Marisa had in her therapy practice was this: Your mind does what it truly thinks you want it to do and what it truly believes is best for you.
You’re the only one who chooses how to use the power of the mind, so remember how much control you actually hold. Its purpose is always to ensure that it moves you from pain to pleasure. However, you can decide what that pleasure means to you.
The issue arises when you speak negatively to yourself. For example, if you say, “I hate doing this job assignment,” your mind will make you procrastinate for hours. Or if you say, “The pressure of this is killing me,” your mind will make you sick.
Marisa Peer’s tip: Change your dialogue with your mind. Start by writing down all the negative beliefs you catch yourself thinking about. Then, change the language you use to speak to yourself.
This’ll also shift your perspective on the things you associate pleasure with. And establishing new healthy habits in your life won’t seem like such a dread because you won’t be running on old thinking patterns.
It’s going to be a win-win situation for both you and your mind. As you consciously create the life you truly desire to live, your mind feels ecstatic for accomplishing its purpose: helping you thrive and achieve those goals. It’s up to you to decide how.
If you want to start changing your self-talk immediately, you can listen to this guided hypnosis session by Marisa:
3. Connect to the power of I am enough
“If I were your doctor,” says Marisa, “your diagnosis would be that you don’t think you’re enough.” The common denominator of all our problems is that we don’t feel good enough, strong enough, or even confident enough. The list can go on and on.
Marisa Peer’s tip: Challenge yourself to say “I am enough” as many times as you possibly can. Write it down on your mirrors. Sing it out loud in the car. Set it as your lock screen. And simply take any moment you can to remind yourself how incredibly good it feels to be enough.
In the beginning, it may seem silly, or you may even feel like you’re lying to yourself. However, Marisa has a unique way of rephrasing that too:
Lie to your brain, cheat fear and steal back that phenomenal confidence you were born with.— Marisa Peer, trainer of Mindvalley’s Rapid Transformational Hypnotherapy for Abundance Quest
The more you connect with your enoughness, the more you will embody it. And from this place of pure acceptance, your confidence can shine through all the blockages and limiting beliefs that were holding you back.
4. Make the familiar unfamiliar
“To succeed at anything, you have to make the unfamiliar familiar and the familiar unfamiliar.” Read it again and let it sink in.
What’s important to do when strengthening the muscle of self-confidence is to decide what familiar things you want to get rid of. Then consider what new experiences you’d like to try.
Marisa Peer’s tip: The next time something comes up that you find challenging or difficult, don’t just say, “It’s hard; I can’t do it.”
Marisa recommends saying instead, “This is just unfamiliar, but the more I do it, the more familiar it will get.” And it will.
5. Let praise in
Focus on letting go of destructive criticism while letting praise in. And when you’re faced with people trying to criticize you, you can respond as follows:
- “Thanks for sharing that.”
- “Would you repeat that slowly?” or “Are you trying to hurt me?”
- “Did you know that critics have the most criticism reserved for themselves?”
It might just throw them off guard and make them realize the impact of their words.
Marisa Peer’s tip: Remember, criticism often comes from a place of insecurity or projection. It’s not always about you, so don’t take it personally. Focus on the good things people have to say and let the negativity roll off your back.
Marisa reminds you that “benevolent people praise, and people who feel inferior criticize.” And more often than not, it’s not even about you; it’s about something they’re projecting.
Unlock Your Unshakable Confidence
“To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance,” Oscar Wilde once said. It’s still incredibly relevant in our modern society.
We’re so used to looking for love outside ourselves and searching for meaningful connections everywhere else. However, falling in love with yourself is never going to bore you or disappoint you. And the best part of it all is that it lasts forever.
Building a strong relationship with who you truly are will unleash your ultimate self-confidence and unlock the power of your fullest potential. And if you need some guidance along the way, Mindvalley can open the doors to insightful resources, like that from Marisa Peer.
With her Rapid Transformational Therapy for Abundance Quest, you can access powerful wisdom to discover your best self and live your best life.
By signing up for an account today, you can sample classes from this program and many others while you apply this knowledge and see how it transforms your life.
When you’re feeling stuck on your path, you can also browse through a library of guided meditations (available for free on the Mindvalley app) to help you release any mental tension and shift your limiting beliefs.
As she’s been known to say, “You make your beliefs, and then your beliefs make you.”