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Photo Credit: Lylah Levi

How to Build Your Self Confidence

It’s The Gentlemen’s Curb a lifestyle blog where fashion meets fitness in a BIG way. We are back with some more information for you. When you lack confidence, it is all too easy to hide away inside and keep yourself to yourself. Unfortunately, this is also the fastest route to loneliness and isolation. And that’s not going to boost your confidence, is it? When you are feeling low and can’t get yourself together, the road back to self-confidence can seem long and exhausting and, to be honest, you are going to have to put in a fair bit of effort to get yourself going. You need to put yourself into situations outside your comfort zone and learn to see what others see in yourself. You can be strong, confident and happy. All you need to do is give yourself a nudge in the right direction. 

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Photo Credit: Lylah Levi

Tackling Body Confidence

Lots of people lacking body confidence end up lacking confidence more generally. This is quite logical in one respect because if you are embarrassed by your appearance, you are less likely to want other people to see you. Then as you avoid people more, it gets harder to go out, you start to worry about your social skills and a vicious cycle begins. Body confidence does not arrive overnight. You will always have days where you look in the mirror and don’t see what you want. This is normal for everyone, the only difference is that a confident person will look, shrug, grin anyway and get on with life. If you want to have body confidence, you need to get rid of your hangups and carry on regardless.  Accept yourself. A great way to give yourself more body confidence is to join a sports team. Not only will you feel fitter and better, but you will have a ready-made group to encourage you to do better. They don’t care what you look like as long as you arrive ready to run around and have some fun! Soccer and basketball are both great for getting involved in a local team and baseball is a lot of fun too (have a look at this website for some equipment to help get your eye in).  When you realize that most people are interested in you as a person rather than you as a body, you should relax a lot more. The most important thing is not that you look like a model, but that you are fit and healthy. This looks different on everyone so give yourself a break!

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Photo Credit: Lylah Levi

Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone

Confidence is about being able to walk into a new situation and keep your cool. You are still you, wherever you are and whatever you are doing. This is worth remembering because, for those people who get incredibly anxious when doing something new, you can ground yourself in the knowledge that very little is really going to change.

 

If you spend a lot of time in hiding, you won’t give yourself much opportunity to spread your wings or build your confidence. So, if you want to grow, you need to put yourself in a bit of discomfort and then take a step back and think about what has happened.

 

Everyone finds different things scary so you will have to think about what you are avoiding to work out what you need to do. For example, if you tend to avoid talking to new people, you should learn to talk to strangers (keep reading for more!), if you are afraid of failing, you should try something you’ve never done before, etc.

 

The point of stepping outside your comfort zone is that you will quickly find that the world carries on regardless of what happens. Yes, you might embarrass yourself but 99 times out of 100 you won’t. And if you do, laugh it off, make a joke at your own expense and move on. You can’t stop yourself having those 99 brilliant experiences for fear of one bad one so the more you see that you don’t fail, the more you will realize that you have nothing to worry about. That’s all confidence really is.

 

And once you have mastered that, it’s time for the biggie: learning to talk to strangers.

Learning to Talk to Strangers

Lots of people are nervous about meeting new people because they are worried they are going to say something stupid. This is a fairly normal worry to have but it shouldn’t stop you chatting with a stranger in a bar or meeting new people in general. In fact, you need to embrace the quiver of nerves in your stomach and just go for it!

If you are looking for something more structured, have a go at these exercises in talking to strangers by Kio Stark. Starting with sitting and observing, these exercises are a good way to get you chatting with people and sharing with them. We are all social creatures really and though some people will feel weird about you saying hello to them or asking them a question, for the most part, people are happy to engage for some time.

 

You will be surprised by how many good responses you to get from talking to strangers but you shouldn’t be, really. The likelihood of you actually saying something stupid and the whole world collapsing in on itself is really very remote. In fact, if you want evidence of this, Jessica Pan, an English journalist in London did an experiment to see what would happen if she spoke to strangers more often. At the peak of her experiment, she asked strangers stupid questions. It was fine.

The more you get used to talking to people, the more confident you will become. Part of this is a simple realization that most people are nice and willing to chat but another confidence-building aspect is the discovery that you are also a nice person willing to chat. People aren’t repulsed by you or afraid or whatever it is you fear. They just see you as a stranger, exactly how you see them.  So you see, your body, your fears, and your shyness are no reason not to be confident. Build yourself up, get out there and go and do whatever you want.

 

You’ve got this.

It’s The Gentlemen’s Curb a lifestyle blog where fashion meets fitness in a BIG way.