For many people a lack of confidence stops them from doing what they want to do or it can mean that they just dread doing things that cannot be avoided – such as securing a new job following redundancy. However, it is worth taking the steps required to build self-confidence as this has a massive positive impact not only in job search situations but in life generally.
Here are some ideas to get you thinking:
- Use the power of body language e.g. stand tall, look people in the eye.
- Use role models.
- Dress to look and feel your best.
Build your confidence bank
- What are you good at?
- What do others value about you?
- Write down all the compliments you receive.
- Keep a success diary.
- Learn a new skill: prove to yourself that you can learn new things.
Success is the sum of small efforts repeated day in and day out so:
- Increase your energy.
- Trust your instincts.
- Accept responsibility for your decisions.
- Stop complaining and take action.
- Believe the people around you want the best for you.
- Maintain (or attain) balance in your life.
- Whatever you’re doing, commit to it 100%.
- Accept what you cannot change.
- Take physical exercise.
Your attitude about yourself, your thoughts and the way in which you communicate – that is to say, the words that you use – have an impact on your confidence levels, your self-esteem and how others perceive you. The more self-assured you are you will notice people around you will treat you in a different way. The more energy you exude people around you will notice that there is something different about you. Something really good.
Here are some ideas to get you thinking about your thoughts and the words you use. Your attitude and posture and their impact on your confidence levels:
- Our attitude – whether positive or negative – has an impact on our levels of confidence.
- You can choose to change the way you think: what you choose to believe will become your reality.
- You can change your attitude if you want to: for example: when you do something new or different and it doesn’t work out as you wanted, consider it a learning experience and not a failure.
- Positive attitude: by choosing to consciously think positive thoughts you begin to have these same positive thoughts unconsciously.
Everyone has an internal commentary running in their heads, known as ‘self-talk’ or our chatterbox. If this is constantly telling you that you cannot do something or that it is too scary, you will believe it. Your inner voice will say things that you would never tolerate from someone else (‘you look awful in that suit’, ‘ there’s no way you could do that in a million years’, ‘who are you kidding’). The key is to reject these thoughts just as you would if someone else expressed them.
Every time you catch your inner voice being negative, replace the thought with something positive. Your subconscious will believe these positive thoughts and as a bonus you will hear positive thoughts throughout the day.
It takes practise and vigilance.
The Power of Words
Be aware of your language, the vocabulary you use affects how you feel about things.
Consider for example the impact on your feelings of replacing:
‘I can’t’ with ‘I won’t’
‘I should’ with ‘I could’
‘It’s a problem’ with ‘it’s an opportunity’
‘I need to’ with ‘I want to’
Try saying one of them out loud now.
Many people have a tendency to paint a more negative picture than is necessary. How often have you said “oh I’ve had an awful day” when in fact you just suffered a small mishap? These over dramatisations have a similar effect to negative self-talk, you start to believe you live in a world full of awful things.
By careful use of language you can shape your view of the world, of yourself and of how you react to those experiences.