Self-confidence is not a reliable companion. Sometimes, it just comes and goes, depending on how our day turns out. Be it a job interview, giving a presentation, or when having a date, our self-confidence plays an essential part in the way we think about ourselves and are perceived by others.
Unfortunately, it tends to let us down when we need it the most. Building up unshakeable self-confidence is a life-time project, but it is possible to change our self-perception for the better within minutes if we need it.
5 Powerful Ways to Boost Your Self-Confidence within Minutes
1. Pose Like Super(wo)man
The power of posture is very much underestimated. When feeling self-conscious, we also have a tendency to let our shoulders drop, round our upper back and look down. We literally fall into pieces, and everyone can see it from afar.
Our body language not only affects how we are perceived, but also how we see ourselves. So stand strong, head up, chin slightly up and shoulders back. It will give you an instant boost of confidence, as the way we stand and sit influences also the way we feel.
You also should try one of the power poses before an important event as suggested by Amy Cuddy. She gave a fascinating speech at TED Talks on how our body language can change who we are in only about 2 minutes. In fact, she suggests to ‘fake it until we become it’ in the long run through the way we communicate non-verbally.
2. Breathe Like a Champion
We “catch our breath”, we “hold our breath”, we witness a “breathtaking” performance, we “save our breath”, but how often do we think about our breath? We inhale and exhale every single minute until we draw our final breath, but we are hardly aware of it, unless we are “short of breath”. Still, breathing can have an impressive impact on our well-being and performance.
When we are stressed or anxious, our breathing is very shallow. A very effective method to relax our body and mind is to breathe consciously and deeply, which makes our whole system calm down. Think of athletes: Before they rise from the starting block, they take a few deep breaths.
Stand or sit still and straight to leave room for your lungs to expand, and try to breathe in as deeply as possible until you have filled your lungs and belly with air. Slowly release until lungs and belly are empty. Take more time for exhaling than for inhaling.
3. Powerful Speech and Thoughts
Not only our posture influences our self-perception. It’s also about what we think and which words and expressions we use. When we talk to ourselves or others and only use vocabulary with a negative connotations, we also radiate negativity to the inside and outside.
Think of people who tend to complain when you ask how they are, or the ones who mostly use negative expressions or badmouth others. We are not keen to have them around.
Are you aware of the words you use most of the time? Is your language dominated by positive or negative connotations?
Usually, we don’t realize when we are being negative. It starts with small things like calling ourselves an “idiot” when we realize we forgot to buy some milk. So, if we manage to leave out this (self-)talk, it alters our mood and confidence, and how we come across.
In other words: When we change our internal attitude, our external attitude is going to change, too.
4. Get Physical for 7 Minutes
It’s no secret that physical exercise helps with almost any emotional issues and can improve our mood. When we are feeling weak and insecure, exercise can be a real game changer, too. The problem is how to fit it into a busy day, especially when you are down and don’t feel like doing anything – or are more of a couch-potato like me.
But there is a solution: You don’t have to go for a 1-hour-run or hit the gym in to feel better about yourself. It’s just about getting exhausted and feeling stronger mentally as a result.
When I don’t have time to spare, I do a 7-minute workout. I don’t even need to leave the house or use any equipment. Apart from improving my fitness in general, it helps me a lot to feel better about myself when I need a boost of confidence quickly. Any exercise is great when you lack confidence, but I figured that these 7 minutes do the job for me, and they fit beautifully into any tight schedule. So no excuses anymore!
5. Count your Successes
We are likely to think of past failures when our self-confidence hits rock bottom. Instead, think of your successes, but not only of the final result, also how you got there. Usually, it puts a smile on our face when we remember how cleverly we convinced a difficult client to sign the contract or how we managed to ask our then soon-to-be boyfriend out.
We tend to forget what we have accomplished and how we used our talents once it’s done. In contrast, what we keep in mind is what went wrong.
So stir up the good memories and remember the successful times, be it in a private context or work-related. We all have managed to do things well in our past, so don’t deny yourself an encouraging train of thought.
One More Tip:
However self-conscious you might feel don’t strive for recognition. True self-confidence can only come from within ourselves. If we make it dependent on others or external events, it is very elusive.
You are perfect just the way you are. Sometimes, we just need a little push to realize it ourselves.
How about you? What’s your secret to regaining self-confidence quickly when you’re feeling insecure and weak?