self confidence techniques brighton

Confidence is about believing that we are powerful, valuable, and capable.

Some lucky people seem to naturally feel confident most of the time. However, most people need a bit of help in building their confidence. People of all ages and abilities can learn to develop not only their inner confidence, but also the skill of showing confidence, no matter how they feel inside.

Here are some tips to help you feel more confident:

1. Free yourself from labels

If you label yourself, you are limiting yourself. It’s like putting yourself inside a box and it can be hard to get out of this box. For instance if you tell yourself, ‘I’m lazy’, then you expect yourself to be lazy, because that’s what you’ve labelled yourself as, you have built a box of expectations around yourself, that might be hard to get out of  because you will  say to yourself, and perhaps to other people ‘Oh well, I’m just lazy, what do you expect?’ and not make the effort  to be anything else.

On the other hand, if you say to yourself, ‘Well I have been lazy in the past, but I have a choice, is being lazy what I want? What are the benefits to me of being lazy?’, what are the benefits of NOT being lazy? ‘. Then you are helping yourself to see beyond the box. If you tell yourself the opposite of ‘I’m lazy’, for instance, ‘I am a hard working motivated person, I like to get the most out of life.’ , even if you are not quite sure if it is true, saying it to yourself will help you to start seeing yourself differently and so it will seem more natural and you will find that you have escaped your box and can begin to explore new ways of seeing yourself and of being.

Some labels come from things that other people have labelled you as in the past. Remember that you have the power to remove these labels, if they are not labels that are helpful to you.

Try not to limit your possibilities!

2. Don’t compare yourself to others

‘If you compare yourself to others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.’  
~ Desiderata

Everybody is different, everyone has their own unique talent that they can bring to the world. If you compare yourself to other people, then you are not respecting the uniqueness of everyone. You might think less of yourself and be discouraged, by comparing yourself to someone who you might think is better than you.

Remember even the worlds best violin player once made screechy sounds and mistakes when trying to play a simple tune. If she or he had listened to his negative voice that told him ‘You are no good, it sounds terrible, listen to that other violinist, she is much better than you, you’ll never be as good as that!’ , then perhaps he would have been discouraged and given up and the negative voice that he listened to in his head would have been correct.
The good thing is that we have the choice not to listen to our negative voice, there is another voice inside of us, which can tell us different things, give us encouragement and forgive us for our mistakes as they are part of the learning process. If we can tune in to this voice and let it lead the way, we will be led down a much brighter path full of wonderful opportunities and achievements.

If  on the other hand, you compare yourself to someone and consider yourself better than them, then it is obviously always best to keep this to yourself as you could badly damage their self esteem and motivation, or make them angry. You may become conceited and ……you may also be wrong!  It is not up to us to judge a person’s worth,  because we cannot ever fully understand the complexities of their life, their own personal challenges (which are different to ours) we all have our own journey.

Never criticize a man until you’ve walked a mile in his moccasins. ~ Old Native American proverb

Just quietly ‘keep on keeping on’ and if you stay focused on your goal, your focus will lead you nearer and nearer to it.

3. Visualization

This leads me into talking about how famous footballers, golfers and swimmers often use visualization to help them to achieve their goal.
On the evening before a Premier League football match, Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney asks the club’s kit man what colour shirts, shorts and socks the team will wear the next day.
This is what he said about it in an interview:
“I lie in bed the night before the game and visualise myself scoring goals or doing well,…..
You’re trying to put yourself in that moment and trying to prepare yourself, to have a ‘memory’ before the game.”

Finding out which kit he will be wearing helps him to imagine in more detail the image of him being successful.
“I don’t know if you’d call it visualising or dreaming, but I’ve always done it, my whole life.”

The Olympic heptathlon champion Jessica  Ennis-Hill said (before the London 2012 Olympics):
“I use visualisation to think about the perfect technique. If I can get that perfect image in my head, then hopefully it’ll affect my physical performance.”

Other famous people who say that visualisation helped them to acheive success are Oprah Winfrey, Jim Carrey, Bill Gates, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Michael Jordan, and many more.

You might not want to be famous, but whatever your goal, visualizing it happening will give you greater focus and more confidence. After all it is only an extension of what we might do anyway. If we are confident about something we picture ourselves doing the thing well, we expect to do it well, if we don’t feel confident about it, then we picture ourselves doing it badly, sometimes again and again, this will not help to build our confidence.
Visualization can help us to develop confidence in an area that we might not feel confident. It can even be used for social situations. For example, if you are shy, picturing yourself walking into a room full of people you don’t know, (or people who you do know but feel shy around), and feeling relaxed and able to  unselfconsciously be yourself, can help you to switch into really being like this when you are actually in the situation. The more you visualize, the stronger the image of you feeling relaxed in this situation will be and the easier it will become to naturally be like that.
Picture yourself sitting at the desk during an important exam and imagine that you are really relaxed, confident, see yourself able to remember all the information which you have revised easily and happily writing the answers, thinking clearly and calmly. See the room around you imagine the sounds and smells,in the room, the feeling of the chair you are sitting on. Be aware of your breathing being calm and relaxed.
Obviously, this is not some kind of magic that will mean you can pass exams without revising, you will still need to revise! It is just about getting your mind to see yourself in the best way possible and to feel relaxed and natural about it.

A couple of quick visualizations

1.The sun:

When you feel verbally under attack, or you feel weak and powerless in a situation, picture a huge sun shining in your belly, feel its warmth and the lovely relaxing feeling that the warm sun gives you, feel it giving you strength and feel this strength and warm feeling of happiness spreading to all of your body, so that every cell in your body is filled with light, feel it protecting and strengthening you.

self confidence tips

2. The tree:

Imagine that you are a tree, a huge great strong tree like an oak, or a giant redwood. Feel your roots strong in the ground, feel the earth beneath you supporting you.

Allow yourself to have the strength of a strong tree, to be yourself, to actly naturally, to be proud of who you are and stand up calmly and strongly for what is right. Feeling the strength of a tree can give you that calm confident strength.

These visualisations can be practised and developed at home, try to really get into the details at home so that when you are in a difficult situation you can just say the word ‘tree’ in your head and it will all come back to you instantly when you need it.

4. Create your own wall of Fame

Why not build your own wall of fame, a place where you can put anything you have won or done which you are proud of: swimming certificates, pieces of writing, drawings, pictures of you doing things that make you happy, being with friends, family, doing your favourite hobby, or anything which makes you feel good about yourself. If you feel embarrassed about having it on your wall, or aren’t allowed to stick things on the wall, then perhaps you could have a special scrap book to stick things in and write about nice things people have said about you. Then if you are feeling bad about yourself and your self esteem is low, you can get it out and remind yourself of all those things that make you feel proud and happy.

5. Following your passions and dealing with criticism

Follow your passions in life, the things that you are really interested in, that make you feel happy, learn more, practice, get better. If people criticise you for it, listen to what they say, think about it, is this a criticism which can help you to improve? Can you learn from it? Are they saying it to help you, even though it might be upsetting to hear?

If so, then great! It’s a chance to get even better. If however the criticism is not helpful and/ or is just meant to bring you down and discourage you, then let it go, drop it, say to yourself: ‘That’s their opinion, I don’t agree.’
Don’t be discouraged and keep on keeping on!

6. See mistakes as ways of learning

‘One who fears failure limits his activities. Failure is only the opportunity to more intelligently begin again.’ – Henry Ford

‘The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall’. – Ralph Waldo Emerson 

As many successful people will tell you, mistakes are a great way of learning and improving ourselves. This seems to be the difference between people who make a success of ourselves and reaching our full potential. If you allow your mistakes to get you down and focus too much on feeling bad about them this  may become a big block to achieving your goals.
While one person hesitates because he feels inferior, the other is busy making mistakes and becoming superior. – Henry C. Link

7. Develop your independence and responsibilities

Try to develop your independence by doing as many tasks by yourself as you can. Think ahead and plan what you might need to do before your parent or carer tells you to do it, for instance putting clothes in a neat pile, or in the linen bin after you’ve undressed, keeping your room organised and looking after your possessions. This will not only help you to respect yourself, but other people will have more respect and more confidence in you, they will see you as more mature and responsible. As a result of this they might give you more freedom, for instance allowing you to meet friends in town alone, letting you walk to the shop by yourself, or cook a meal by yourself.

Perhaps you have been doing these things for a while now and might be old enough to get a Saturday job, to bring in some extra pocket money, or do some babysitting for neighbours. Perhaps on the other hand, you are too young to be thinking of walking to the shop by yourself yet, you may just earn some respect and credibility and put a smile on your parent/ carer’s face rather than having them nagging you.

Remember it is an individual choice for parents when they let their child do things alone for the first time and you must respect their decision, arguing will not help the situation, but showing to them how independent and responsible you can be will help them to feel more comfortable about letting you have these freedoms.

Becoming more responsible and independent will help you to feel more confident about yourself, as you see that you don’t need to rely so much on other people because you are doing things for yourself instead. You can start to feel more proud of yourself.

8. Use the world as your resource for growth

-Ask, communicate
Part of becoming more independent is finding out information for yourself. If you have a problem don’t just sit and do nothing about it, use your connections with people or the internet, to find out what kind of help you can get, get help to solve your problem. If you want to find out more about something, see what you can do by yourself, use your local facilities like your library.
Young children rely pretty much totally on their parents or carer for help, part of growing up is learning to communicate with the outside world to get the help from other sources as well as your parents.

Obviously this means that you need to be sensible and aware of the potential dangers, that could be encountered when communicating with the outside world, for instance being aware of ‘Stranger danger’, how to keep yourself safe online and avoid dangers when out on the streets.
There is lots of help and advice availible online about this, such as Also about online safety and NSPCC

Being aware of potential dangers and knowing how to deal with difficult or dangerous situations can give you more confidence as you grow into becoming more independent.

9. Body language

People will listen to you more and hassle you less, if you are aware, calm, and respectfully Confident.
Try to be:
Aware –Being alert and aware in your surroundings (wearing headphones or using a mobile when out in public can inhibit your sense of awareness, if you need to use a mobile find somewhere to sit or stand safely for a minute).

Calm-  Stay in control of your mind, your body and your words.

Respectful confidence – Act like you believe in yourself and respect others.

3 top tips to look and sound confident:

Posture: Stand (or sit) up straight and tall with your shoulders back  and head up (don’t hang it down). Look people in the eye when you talk to them, but with a soft kind eye (not like staring). Try to have a peaceful look on your face and openness in your body language, (e.g. loose relaxed arms.

Voice: Have a calm but strong voice, don’t let it be weak, whiny and scared sounding. Make sure you get enough breath to speak like this (sometimes when we’re nervous we forget to breath properly, calm breathing is your best friend when it comes to sounding confident.

Listen: Focus on the other person, on observing and listening to them respectfully, rather than worrying about what they might think of you, you will also come across as less self conscious.

10. Be brave, challenge yourself

challenge yourself to do new things that seem a bit scary (as long as it is not dangerous), you will feel proud of yourself.

Encourage others

Look for ways to encourage other people to come out of themselves and feel more brave and confident, be respectful  (not patronising) and acknowledge their strengths, whilst keeping your own strength and self respect.

Try to stay centred when faced with rude or critical people, or people who subtly make you feel small.

At times like these remember you can  visualise a strong light in your belly shining out no matter what they say or do. Or picture yourself as a tree with strong roots in the ground. This will help to give you the strength to be true to yourself no matter what the situation, to be calm and strong like a tree.

“Don’t let the noise of others opinions drown out your own inner voice, and most importantly have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.'”~ Steve Jobs (founder of Apple computers)

All SMART Coaching (Stress Management And Relaxation Techniques) are designed to provide excellent and relevant quality well-being and mindfulness training, mindfulness training in schools or with young minds and intuition, insight mindfulness training across all sectors.