Generally speaking, self-belief is not a topic that crops up much around boardroom tables, Zumba classes or at dinner parties, is it? And yet without it we’re stuck – spectators in the cheap seats of our own lives. We must, however, each have a bit of it lurking around as we’ve got this far along our own journeys, haven’t we?
And yet, from what I see and hear when I first start working with my Life Coaching clients, it’s something that can be in short supply when we get to the point where we want to make changes, get going with putting our plans into action and get back on track with ourselves (or in some cases get on the track in the first place.)
As I suggested in this post title – our self-belief can be like a hospital gown that has us covered to a point, but is a bit breezy around the back!
In my experience, self-belief is a muscle that needs to be exercised to keep it lean, strong and ready to hold you up when you need it most. The more you start doing a little work out with it, you’ll be surprised at the results you generate for yourself and the feelings of relief that come with a chocolate covered side of un-stop-able-ness (yeah, that’s a word!)
So, how do you get to working out your self-belief muscle? Well, here are some 'starters for 10' you can turn on for yourself right now:
Let go of your addiction to approval.
This is a bit of a heavy one on first glance but stick with me. When you’re trying to get really strong from the inside out it is absolutely pivotal that you respect and cherish your own values and that you walk the walk when it comes to your non-negotiables. This may mean you have to turn down the people pleasing so you can gain time and space to think about what you want and act, based on that. And only that.
It’s not anyone else’s job to keep you pepped up, but your own. Taking action without the comments or reassurance from others will show you how strong you really are and how much you get done when you’re free from the distraction of everyone else’s newsfeed.
Write it down when you get it right.
You know when you’ve been in that job interview and the person on the other side of the table is making notes? Or, when you were at school and your teacher would write down their observations from your essay or your comments in class? It was always red pen wasn’t it? Anyway. When you’re working out your self-belief muscle you can massively help your efforts by keeping a success journal and add to it daily, regardless of the size or description of the success. When you get it right – write it down. There’s a reason why many coaches and self-development leaders recommend this, because it works!
Grow a really long arm – you’ll need it to pat yourself on the back!
Start to focus and hone in on what you’re doing well and how you’re using your skills, talents and attributes. You don’t have to swim the Atlantic to recognise you’re doing a great job: - Navigated a difficult client conversation? – Nice work. Decided not to engage in a fight with your partner? – Keep it up! Let a bitchy comment roll over you because you’ve got the swagger of Jagger – high five! Skyped your bezzy in Australia even though the time difference meant you yawned all day? – werk it, baby! Do what you can to create and preserve some peace in your life so that you can hear the cheers and give yourself some encouragement. You will smile inside A LOT more!
Trust your gut.
If there’s an inkling or inner voice that you’re doing a really good job of ignoring and pushing to the back, you need to stop trying to intellectualise that right now and do something with it. It will lead you to some insight that could be game changing for you. Follow the hunch and resist the temptation to borrow drama from the future.
Try and see your options and alternatives rather than just the rabbit hole you THINK you have to jump down.
Regardless of what anyone says, you ALWAYS have a choice. When you can see and evaluate the different choices you have available, you’re much less likely to default to easy, boring or ‘should’ and do yourself a massive favour. In other words you ‘show up’ for yourself and become accountable. That’s a major self-belief work out – I have got loads from using this one. Options are awesome so make sure you recognise you have some, as it will pump up your responsibility to yourself too.
Give yourself permission to have high expectations.
We often don’t think we deserve to access the best or grant ourselves an upgrade or simply ask for exactly what we want. We don’t want to be seen as ‘up ourselves’, arrogant or ‘bossy’ so we stay quiet
If you get clear on the output you want from a conversation, a relationship or in your job role, for example, you will know exactly what to ask for or the steps to work towards to strengthen your position. Another few bench presses for your self-belief muscle right there.
Repeat after me: “I’m not bossy. I’m the boss.”
I hope these self-belief exercises can help you start flexing that muscle of yours. It's time to back yourself and tie up that gown of yours.
What do you reckon? Have you any additional exercises to share that have worked for you? Which one suggested above are you going to try and work out? Let me know in the comments below and if you liked this piece do please share with your friends - let's spread the word and flex those self-belief muscles!
Love Lucy xoxo
GIf source: http://buzz.longwood.edu/10-5-tips-for-a-less-stressful-holiday-season/ // http://www.buzzfeed.com/anamarias3/15-daily-struggles-when-youre-not-a-morning-perso-mrya // http://hellorelax.com/im-not-bossy-im-the-boss/ // http://www.buzzfeed.com/ailbhemalone/watching-bridget-jones-diary-as-a-teenager-vs-as-a-twentysom // http://www.buzzfeed.com/regajha/friends-you-have-in-your-twentie