“Believe in yourself” is a well-known mantra of the confident, self-possessed go-getters of the world
. When you believe in yourself, you trust that your unique strengths and abilities will allow you to come out on top in almost any situation. Your thoughts and actions are marked by courage and optimism, rather than negativity and self-doubt, making you better able to tackle challenges
, silence your demons and make all of your wildest dreams come true.
But perhaps this is easier said than done, so let’s break the idea of “believing in yourself” down into seven simple steps. While your own path may not lead you through these steps in any specific order, you can take my word for it that each of them is a critical part of the journey toward believing in yourself and manifesting your fullest potential. Believe me: They work!
1. Celebrate your strengths and acknowledge your weaknesses.
How do you see yourself when you look in a mirror? Do you celebrate what you see or do you only see things you despise or that you wish you could improve? When you talk to yourself, is it empowering or is it disparaging? When you are tempted to speak words of hurt and criticism over yourself, consider doing this instead: Imagine what you would say if you were speaking to a dearly loved friend. Would you say hurtful, ugly things to someone you love? Then neither should you speak such things to yourself!
Understand that you can speak words of kindness, love and compassion over yourself while still acknowledging where you fall short. Simply acknowledge where you have room to improve and then believe in yourself that you can be better.
2. Focus on the light at the end of the tunnel.
The start of any journey can be scary and full of the unknown, even journeys that are about believing in yourself and celebrating who you are. If you struggle with believing in yourself and frequently give in to negative self-talk, then practice envisioning how you imagine believing in yourself might feel in the future. How would believing in yourself change your thoughts, your decisions, your actions? Focus on your ideal state of being and then begin to take small, methodical steps in that direction, however unfamiliar that new territory might be.
3. Align your mind, body and soul for the journey.
Maybe you struggle to believe in yourself because you’ve felt betrayed by yourself or others in the past. Maybe you made decisions you came to regret. Or maybe a friend said or did something that hurt you. It makes sense that you would therefore lose some faith in yourself or your abilities along the way, but here’s the thing: Believing in yourself isn’t negated by feelings of failure. Rather, it should be strengthened by your ability to face down challenges and come out the other side, having gained valuable insight along the way.
4. Look deep inside. (Your soul, not your shirt.)
Before you can truly believe in yourself, you have to get real with yourself. Take time to consider: Who are you really? What elements of your life give you the greatest joy? The greatest pain? What are you the proudest of right now? What do you feel is currently missing? Are you moving in the direction of your goals or does the rat-race of daily life keep getting in the way of your deepest desires? When you discover what it is you truly want in life and who you want to be, then you can figure out the direction you need to go. Maybe you need to talk to a life coach. Maybe you need to ask a friend to hold you accountable to your goals. Whatever you decide to do, if it’s done in service to your most authentic self, you can’t go wrong.
5. Adopt a “just do it” mindset.
There may come a time in your life when you feel cornered, when life only has one option for you and you must move in that direction, whether you want to or not. In these instances, resist the temptation to over-analyze your circumstances and flounder. Instead, “just do it.” Accept the change or transformation process that is coming your way and dive into it with everything you’ve got. If you really only have one option in front of you, then that’s a pretty clear sign from the universe that you are exactly where you need to be.
6. Dig in with determination and balance.
Chances are, if you’ve been able to adopt the “just do it” mindset then you’re no stranger to digging in with relentless determination. That’s great! Determination is what allows us to live our lives with purpose, conviction and confidence, but it can also can be physically and emotionally draining if we forget to balance out that drive with plenty of rest and self-care. While you are making progress on your journey, be mindful not to burden yourself unnecessarily with projects and commitments. You can’t believe in yourself if you don’t listen to your body or your mind when it says it’s time to take a break. Make it a point to honor those needs.
7. Everyone has beliefs and opinions. Own yours.
At some points along your journey toward believing in yourself, you’re going to encounter different people who may try to jolt you off course. After doing all of this hard work, the last thing you want to do is let the unwelcome opinions and attitudes of others block your path. So don’t. Own who you are and the work that you’ve done and let the naysayers proceed on their way. Their journey does not have to align with yours. In fact, being able to full recognize and accept this is the last step toward being a true believer in your power and self-worth.
Great work! You did it! Now own it!
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