1. Appreciate others
As your confidence grows, help others grow their self-esteem. Helping others feel great will have the same effect on you.
If a co-worker turns in a great project, tell him or her and mean it. Do you have a friend that always does kind things for you? Thank the person.
Is your family always there for you? Tell them how much you appreciate their support, and return that support.
2. Learn how to accept praise
It is OK to receive a compliment. No matter how large or how small the compliment is, say thank you.
Do not brush praise off. Accept it, own it, and realize that you are worthy of the compliment. This is tough, especially after years of not accepting. With practice, form a new habit of thankfully, and gracefully, acknowledging your admirers.
3. Read. Read. Then go read some more
Nothing inspires others or instills confidence in oneself more than knowledge. You do not have to know everything about everything, but having a wide base of awareness of the world around you is a boost to your self-worth.
4. Try new things
How does trying new things build confidence? It doesn’t. The decision to try that new thing and follow through with it does. Challenge yourself to try something new at least once a month. For you extreme confidence builders, make it once a week.
5. Get healthy
Living a healthy lifestyle has an everlasting impact on your confidence. This is not about how you look, although yes, that does help your self-esteem. It is about feeling good, making the right choices, and being confident in your life.
6. Surround yourself with support
Is there a life sucker in your world? You know, that one negative friend or family member that brings you down just by being around him or her?
Distance yourself from such a person. Surround yourself with those who make you feel good about yourself. Yes, this is hard. It will be the hardest thing on this list to accomplish.
Don’t know people that make you feel good? Find them. (See No. 4.) No matter how much faith you have in yourself, the friend that isn’t really your friend will destroy that confidence. Move on from that chapter in your life, and make a new, confident future for yourself.
Seriously, just dance, even if you do not know how. Turn the music up, and let it go. In your living room or in your bedroom, even in the middle of the, gasp, grocery store.
You can take this literally or figuratively. The goal is to be yourself. Always. Do not be afraid to let your personality shine. Be confident in who you are, and let the world around you see that person.
8. Jazz up your wardrobe
Do you have a closet full of T-shirts and jeans? Is everything in your closet the same color of black?
Try a couple of new clothing items to go with what you already have. For those on a budget, this only takes a few good, quality items.
A new sport coat, a brightly colored top that looks good on you, even a new tie or statement necklace will change the way you see yourself.
If you aren’t sure what looks good on you, ask a friend or a co-worker to help you out. There is no shame in being fashion backward. Simple changes in your outward appearance not only make you feel better about yourself, but they also change the way others perceive you.
9. Ask for extra work
What?? Yes, request extra work. This will challenge you to do your best. Completing this work will build your confidence in your abilities. Your supervisors will notice your initiative and reward it.
This will also build your courage. Often, extra work exposes you to people in your company you haven’t worked with before.
Remember, when praised, accept it gracefully.
10. Take stock
Write down or type everything you are good at. Be sure to list any item you can think of, even if it does not apply to your current job. For example, you may make the best chicken soup known to mankind. Write it down.