Realize that failure or being wrong will not kill you.
“Confidence comes not from always being right but from not fearing to be wrong.”
Peter T. Mcintyre
“I quit being afraid when my first venture failed and the sky didn’t fall down.”
Allen H. Neuharth
Again, you have to face your fear. Because it is only then that you discover the thing that billions of people throughout history have discovered before you. Failure won’t kill you. Nor will being wrong. The sky will not fall down. That’s just what people that haven’t faced their fear yet think.
The thing is to reframe failure from being something that makes your legs shake to something useful and important for the growth of your self confidence and your overall growth as a human being. Here are four ways that failure can help you out:
You learn. Instead of seeing failure as something horrible you can start to view it more as a learning experience. When standing in the middle of a failure, you can ask yourself questions like: What’s awesome about this situation? What can I learn from this situation?
You gain experiences you could not get any other way. Ideally, you probably want to learn from other people’s mistakes and failures. That’s not always easy to do though. Sometimes you just have to fail on your own to learn a lesson and to gain an experience no one can relate to you in mere words.
You become stronger. Every time you fail you become more accustomed to it. You realize more and more that it’s not the end of the world. And, again, you get desensitized. You can handle things that would have been very hard to handle a few years back. Failing can also a have an exhilarating component because even though you failed you at least took a chance. You didn’t just sit on you hands doing nothing. And that took quite a bit of courage and determination.
Your chances of succeeding increases.
Every time you fail you can learn and increase your inner strength. So every failure can make you more and more likely to succeed.
And remember, the world doesn’t revolve around you. You may like to think so. But it doesn’t. People really don’t care that much about what you do. They have their own life, problems and worries that the world revolves around them to focus on. They don’t think that much about you or are constantly monitoring what you do wrong or when you fail.
Maybe a disappointing thought. But a liberating and relieving one too because now you can let go of that worry that everyone is watching you.
Be Positive, even if you don’t feel the same way.
Avoid self-pity, or the pity and sympathy of others. Never allow others to make you feel inferior–they can only do so if you let them. If you continue to loathe and belittle yourself, others are going to do and believe likewise. Instead, speak positively about yourself, about your future, and about your progress. Do not be afraid to project your strengths and qualities to others. By doing so, you reinforce those ideas in your mind and encourage your growth in a positive direction.
Be thankful for what you have.
A lot of the times, at the root of insecurity and lack of confidence is a feeling of not having enough of something, whether it’s emotional validation, good luck, money, etc. By acknowledging and appreciating what you do have, you can combat the feeling of being incomplete and unsatisfied. Finding that inner peace will do wonders for your confidence.
Remember that no one is perfect.
Even the most confident people have insecurities. At some point in any of our lives, we may feel we lack something. That is reality. Learn that life is full of bumps down the road. And that often these insecure feelings come and go, depending on where we are, who we are with, the mood we’re in, how we are feeling. In other words, they are not constant.
Look in the mirror and smile. Studies surrounding what’s called the “facial feedback theory” suggest that the expressions on your face can actually encourage your brain to register certain emotions. So by looking in the mirror and smiling every day, you might feel happier with yourself and more confident in the long run.
Get to know who you are and what you want out of life.
“The world has the habit of making room for the man whose words and actions show that he knows where he is going.”
“Don’t listen to anyone who tells you that you can’t do this or that. That’s nonsense. Make up your mind, you’ll never use crutches or a stick, then have a go at everything. Go to school, join in all the games you can. Go anywhere you want to. But never, never let them persuade you that things are too difficult or impossible.”
To build and find more confidence in yourself you have to get to know yourself better. Go exploring. Face some of your fears. Fail over and over and understand that it isn’t really that big of a deal. Grow stronger through such experiences and also become more internally relaxed. Figure out what really excites you by simply trying a whole bunch of stuff out.
When you know more about who you are and what you want out of life – not other people say you want – you will have more confidence in yourself and what you can do.
What other people say or think will have less of an impact than it used to because you know who you are better than they do. And since you have had all these experiences, since you have taken time to really get to know yourself and stretch yourself you will trust your own opinion and ability more than anything outside of you. You become stable and centred in yourself.
This will of course take time. It may be something that never really ends. So you might as well get started now.