Effective Self-Confidence Tips – The 3 Pillars Of Confidence
Let me just start this off by asking you a question – what does confidence mean to you?
The dictionary definition aside, “confidence” and “being confident” can mean a lot of things to different people.
This also leads to many ideas and interpretations on how to be confident. But for me – it’s simply preferring action over inaction.
Regardless of the definition, if there’s one thing life has taught me, it’s that people from all walks of life can and will struggle with self-confidence.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a bus driver, a teacher, a politician, or a Hollywood superstar. There will be times in your life when you feel like you’re not good enough to do something.
Even if you know full well that you can do it — that your abilities allow you to do it. But you keep telling yourself you can’t do it, so you avoid doing it entirely.
How many times has that happened in your life? For a lot of people, the answer will be “too many.”
Too many opportunities lost because you never took them. All because you kept telling yourself you weren’t good enough.
Turns out there’s a reason why it keeps happening…
The darkest shadow
There are a lot of things we still don’t understand about our brains, but lack of confidence can be blamed on one part of it.
It’s the reptilian brain, the most ancient and least evolved part of our brains, responsible for our basic survival instincts. Unfortunately, these very survival instincts are what hold us back nowadays.
This is because your reptilian brain forces you to react in one of three ways: Fight, flight, or freeze. And the one emotion that especially triggers that part of the brain is fear.
It was useful in ancient times when we had to survive in a jungle filled with dangerous animals, but most of our modern day fear isn’t related to survival.
Now we’re dominated by the fear of rejection, the fear of failure, the fear of embarrassment, and the fear of any other bad outcome in social scenarios.
But our reptilian brain doesn’t care that it’s different, so it still forces us to either fight, flee, or freeze. Even if the chances of succeeding and failing are evenly balanced.
And to the reptilian brain fighting is the outcome that will most likely lead to death, which is why people almost always default to fleeing or freezing — to not doing anything.
But all of this is made worse by…
The inescapable negative momentum
The more you do or don’t do something in any type of situation, the less likely you are to do things differently in similar situations.
Steven Pressfield called this phenomenon the “Resistance” in his book “Do The Work.”
“Resistance” is like a rubber band that prevents us from going into the opposite direction — from doing things differently.
It’s the one thing that keeps us from becoming the best possible version of ourselves. And consequently, it’s what keeps people without confidence from gaining confidence.
So if you run away from challenges and people, that’s the only thing you’ll want to do and eventually, the only thing you’ll know to do, creating an inescapable negative momentum.
Don’t lose hope just yet…
Unlocking positive momentum
The next time you see someone oozing with confidence, whether it’s someone near you or a faraway celebrity, take a moment and think how they’re able to keep it up.
Like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson for example…
Two words – positive momentum.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t come nearly as easy as negative momentum due to the negativity bias.
So the only real way to get a positive momentum is through hard work, dedication, persistence, and effort. Even when you fail, even when you get knocked down, you need to get up and try again…
You could say self-confidence is like a muscle you have to constantly exercise. Don’t exercise it for too long and eventually it will shrink or disappear completely.
The same thing happened to me. In the past, I had no problems speaking in front of large crowds, but fast forward two years of not doing it and I was deathly afraid.
The only solution was to practice speaking publicly. But I couldn’t just get on stage and talk to a crowd…
Because I’d fail miserably. Not because I couldn’t do it, but because I had built up too much negative momentum.
So what did I do?
The ancient technique of doing something
In the past I read the book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen Covey.
While it’s not listed among self-confidence books, I learned something really valuable that works great for building confidence.
His method is to always do something. It’s literally one of the best self-confidence tips out there.
When you’ve no idea what to do, simply do something. If you feel scared, do something. When you don’t want to begin, do something
It doesn’t have to be a high priority task or difficult tasks. It simply has to be something you’re actively taking part in, but can’t be considered a hobby or recreation…
Every action will grant you momentum. Even the tiniest thing like saying “Hi!” to a complete stranger, will get the ball rolling.
And there’s no reason why you can’t take that approach. If you can think of a reason, it’s probably just your negative momentum speaking.
Remember, only you can turn your life around and become the best version of yourself. All I can do is help guide you in the right direction.
Here’s the tricky part, however. In a lot of cases and for a lot of people, finding the reason why they lack confidence isn’t that simple.
For me, it was being out of practice, but there could’ve been a lot of underlying reasons.
Here’s how you can pinpoint your reasons easier, so you can tackle them more effectively…
The hidden method of choosing your focus
While confidence is a really powerful mental state that anyone wants to have, all of it doesn’t originate from just one place.
The way I see it, there are three main sources of confidence or three pillars: physical confidence, intellectual confidence, and monetary confidence.
And these three pillars are the foundation for any confidence building strategies.
Firstly, physical confidence is anything and everything relating to your body. Your looks, your physique, your health, your strength, and your ability to move your body.
Secondly, intellectual confidence is all things related to your knowledge. How well you know a subject, theories, random trivia, your job, or anything else.
Lastly, monetary confidence is related to your possessions and social status. Your income, your clothes, your car, your house, your family, and just about anything related to your living conditions.
Pick the pillar you think is the weakest one for you and then simply start working on strengthening it. Yep, it really is that simple.
Don’t know how to start?
No worries, I got you covered! Here are some suggestions to set you on the right path. Just remember, you don’t have to go all out on it, simply do something related to it.
Strengthening the pillar of physical confidence – practice a martial art
In the past, there was a time when big screen movies were filled with action stars like Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, and Jean Claude Van Damme, all known for their ability to fight.
They were heroes that motivated people of all ages to become just like them and practice martial arts. To become someone who never backs down and laughs in the face of danger, repelling adversity with a flurry of punches and kicks.
Nowadays, you hardly ever hear about martial arts, aside from the occasional high-profile boxing match or UFC bout. Less recognition, less motivation, and fewer reasons to practice martial arts.
What most people don’t know is that it’s a golden method to boost your physical confidence.
So what does practicing a martial art do for you exactly?
Martial arts isn’t about being violent. In fact, it’s the exact opposite. Most of the teachings relate to self-control, managing your emotions, and becoming someone who can live with their head held up high.
All with the added benefit of strengthening your body, teaching you how to move it, improving your health, and giving you a weapon to defend yourself with.
It’s like getting 7 birds with 1 ricocheting stone, giving you the option to fight if you really need to. And let’s face it, most people are out of shape and don’t even know how to fight, so what are the chances of you, a practitioner of martial arts, losing?
Just having this thought at the back of your head can make you feel that much safer and confident in any situation.
Strengthening the pillar of intellectual confidence – never stop studying
Let me just say that I hated school as much as the next person, but the problem I had was that I needed to study things I wasn’t interested in at all.
It’s also one of the main reasons why most people associate studying with something unpleasant, stopping them from studying any further after finishing school.
But I feel like that’s the wrong way to look at it since you don’t have to study what’s boring.
In this day and age, you can choose what you study from almost a limitless amount of information.
And according to the official statistics, there’s a 101% chance you have something you’re really interested in.
So why should I learn anything?
Simply put, knowledge is underrated. Even when you learn about things that only you find interesting, you’ll get something useful out of it.
The most noticeable benefit is that your conversational skills go way up. Because the main reason why people can’t speak well is not that they don’t have anything to say, it’s because they don’t have enough to say.
Any bit of knowledge can be turned into a conversation. And the more knowledge you have, the better the conversation flows, allowing you to become a confident speaker that much easier.
There’s also the added benefit of improved problem-solving abilities. The more knowledge you have, the more tools you have to deal with difficult problems.
So you can live on knowing you won’t get caught off-guard by sudden challenges, considerably raising your confidence in day-to-day life.
Again, you don’t have to spend all of your time studying, simply do something. Just 30 minutes of studying each day will lead to 15 hours/month and 180 hours/year.
And since most people don’t do this, just this tiny amount of time investment sets you ahead of them considerably. If that’s not a reason to feel confident, I don’t know what that is.
Strengthening the pillar of monetary confidence – start a business
Now hold your horses, don’t let “start a business” intimidate you. I don’t mean renting an office space, hiring dozens of employees, and doing a chain of complicated tasks as a CEO.
The beauty of modern times is that anyone from anywhere can run a business from the comfort of their home.
On top of that, you can do it at a very low to no cost, but profit from it considerably. It’s nowhere as complicated as everyone thinks it is.
I won’t go into the details right now since that would be a massive write up, but if you want to have a step-by-step guide on how to do it…
Check out my ebook “The Empowered Method.” (click on the book below)
So why should I start a business?
The main reason is getting more money.
Because it’s the #1 problem solver in modern society, as sad as it may sound.
The more money you have, the fewer obstacles you have, and the more confident you feel when going through life.
If you had an unlimited amount of money, you’d probably never be worried about anything in life.
It’s also the most powerful pillar out of the three. Mostly because you can invest money in the other two pillars, allowing you to basically buy confidence with money.
But to earn any amount of money, you still need to strengthen the first two pillars. So never abandon everything just for the sake of money.
Feeling confident yet?
You might not have realized it, but just by reading this short blog post you have already increased your intellectual confidence. Way to go!
This is only the first step, however. What’s important is that you keep doing something.
If you continue building the positive momentum like this, you’ll probably become the most confident person in the world. Realistically confident with reasonable expectations, of course.
But that’s all from me for today. Feel free to share methods on how you build/maintain your confidence. Us confident people, we have to stick together!
Also, your feedback and ideas on what you’d like to read about next are very appreciated!
Until next time.
Here’s a confidence booster video that’s also entertaining, enjoy!