Being human can sometimes be disheartening. Being human in the middle of a global pandemic filled with uncertainty and rapid changes that our nervous systems struggle to adapt to quickly enough can be entirely discouraging.
A few days ago I bumped into a friend of mine. She’s one of those women I admire: genuinely warm and lovely, with the pragmatic air of being all-capable and proficient at navigating life. We chatted about the weather and the basil plant I baby-sat for her while she was away and then she leaned in closer and lowered her voice. “Do you… you know, because you work with women… do you have any tips on confidence?” The gentle vulnerability in her voice betrayed her inner struggle. “I’ve been hit hard these last few months and just don’t know what to do anymore!”
“I’ll share some resources with you,” I promised.
In psychology, we learn that confidence is a belief in oneself, the conviction that one has the ability to meet life’s challenges and to succeed — and the willingness to act accordingly. Being confident requires a realistic sense of one’s capabilities and feeling secure in that knowledge. But what happens when your sense of capabilities have been destroyed because your sense of what the world is and your place in it has been turned on its head?
It’s not an exaggeration to say that the Covid-19 pandemic has changed us for life. We’ve all been through unprecedented challenges. The way that we work, socialise, and go about our daily lives has been deconstructed as we’ve been forced into a new way of living. Therefore it’s no surprise that our confidence has taken a knock, be that related to body-image, socialising with others, or rising to other challenges. Like any habit, our confidence can waver when we’re out of practice – throw in the stress of coming out of lockdown with fears around what life is going to look like, and it makes sense that many of us will be feeling unsteady at the moment.
A loss of confidence is an invitation to prioritize your wellbeing, refocus where you invest your time and attention, and step back to see the big picture to reclaim your sense of power and self-worth in the world. Here are 5 free resources to help you do that.
Pause & Pivot is my only free course and it takes you on a gentle journey of identifying your values, deciphering your daily non-negotiable rituals and developing a daily graceful routine that supports your mental spiritual and physical health and wellbeing. Getting clear on what is important to you and enhancing your sense of self improves your confidence by leaps and bounds. Be warned: it might require you to say “no” to a lot of things you were doing on autopilot previously. Join here.
The Perfectionism Project is a podcast sharing personal growth and life advice for perfectionists and is one of the top self-help podcasts on iTunes. If your confidence is shattered because you put enormous pressure on yourself to get everything “right” and be “perfect” this is a good place to start. It includes insights on a range of topics including perfectionism, confidence, mindset, productivity, career, entrepreneurship and everything in between. Available on: Apple iTunes | Stitcher | Spotify | Soundcloud.
Chakra Yin Yoga is a free energy balancing Yin Yoga class on YouTube. Embodied, physical practices are one of the most valuable ways to move stuck energy through your body to release old fears and beliefs and encourage confidence. In fact, that the Solar Plexus located just above your navel, is the energy centre associated with self-belief, self-worth, ego, courage, confidence, and personal power. I do this yin yoga class without the suggested blocks as I don’t have any, and use pillows instead, whenever I feel I need to adjust how I feel about myself and the world.
Self-talk is the inner voice that goes on inside our heads throughout our waking hours. By paying attention to the way your brain works, you will notice that the second you allow self-doubting thoughts in and engage with them, they will snowball and dissuade your sense of confidence. The more you let them take hold, the more they turn from a perceived problem to a real problem. The truth is, we all make mistakes. Being human is weird and messy and full of twists, turns and lessons. We can’t get hung up on those. They are part of the journey. What we can do is have practices in place around how and what we say to ourselves. Journaling is a really effective way to bring awareness to the things you are telling yourself and replacing your negative self-talk with a new narrative. It’s a simple as writing out the percieved problems, checking in with yourself around whether these are really true or not, and then focusing on solutions or accepting and releasing them by writing a new narrative around how you will navigate them hereon out. I have a beautiful Plannher you might want to start your new practice in! Check it out here.
Meditation is one of the most effective spiritual practices that I turn to, to return to self, get centred and let go of the incessant need for external validation that impacts confidence so strongly. Starting with just 10 minutes per day and building on that allows you to access the infinite source of inner strength, wisdom and contentment that you might otherwise try to fill through other means. Nothing builds self-confidence better and faster than truly believing in yourself and there is no faster route to get there than nurturing your relationship with yourself and your inner knowing. If you need guidance to get started I recommend both the Calm and the Insight Timer (my personal favourite).
As an aside, if you want to develop your relationship with your inner knowing and wisdom even further, take my course Instinct. It will teach you how to access that field of confidence in yourself and understanding with moment-to-moment easy-to-do connection points. Learn more about Instinct here.
It is possible to transcend our current challenges and to remember that anything is possible and that you are capable of everything. The world seems very accessible in a special way when you believe in yourself and focus on doing things with your life that you dream of. There’s no better time than the present, and trying these things will remind you what a big beautiful existence we have access to.
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