We’ve all been there: you’re doubting yourself and a friend or family member says, “be more conﬁdent”. But being more conﬁdent when deep down we’re scared and ﬁlled with self-doubt, is often easier said than done! And it can be even harder during puberty - when we’re going through a lot of physical and emotional changes.
Self-conﬁdence is a feeling of trust in ourselves, in our abilities and in our judgement. When we feel conﬁdent, we believe we can.
Self-confidence helps us to be positive and face challenges head on. It is important because it helps us lead happy and successful lives where we feel fulﬁlled. It helps us achieve our goals, enjoy healthy relationships and foster our personal growth.
Yes! Whilst there are some factors that inﬂuence how conﬁdent you feel that you can’t change, like your genes and how you are treated by others, there are plenty of things you do have control over like:
Check out the tips below on how you can cultivate your own self-conﬁdence.
A growth mindset is when we believe our abilities and intelligence can be improved with effort. To build conﬁdence using a growth mindset try the following:
Embrace challenges as an opportunity to learn, grow and gain experience
Reframe failure: Replace the word “failing” with the word “learning”!
Joining a team or a club can improve self-conﬁdence as you experience the support of working towards a shared goal with others. You’ll practise skills again and again and learn through failure – all whilst making friends and having fun!
Going through puberty and experiencing changes to your body can knock your self-conﬁdence, but remember that everything you’re going through is normal and our bodies come in all kinds of beautiful shapes and sizes.
The words you use have the power to change the way you think and feel. For example:
At times, it can be difﬁcult to know what to think and how to act. Learning to make the right decision for you is an important part of growing up and feeling conﬁdent. To make decision-making easier, practise I-D-E-A-L solution building:
By picturing what you want to happen – whether it’s acing an exam or being the ﬁrst to cross the ﬁnish line - you make it more likely to happen. When you try it, visualise every detail, from what you’re wearing - to how you feel. The more vivid your imagination, the better!
Being grateful for what you have and for what others have given you can help you improve your outlook and thought patterns. Try keeping a gratitude diary – write 3 things you’re grateful for every day before bed.
Be proud and celebrate all your achievements, even if they seem small - like getting that difﬁcult homework done!
It’s good to look to others for inspiration but don’t compare yourself to them. We’re all different and all have strengths and weaknesses so compare yourself to yourself and see how far you’ve come and how much improvement you’ve made.
If you ever need a quick conﬁdence ﬁx before taking on a challenge, make like Wonder Woman and strike a power pose. Research shows that ‘power posing’ – where we stand with our feet apart, hands on our hips and chin tilted upwards – helps us to feel more powerful.
If you want to talk to someone about how you’re feeling don’t be afraid to speak to a parent, teacher or trusted adult.
Feeling confident isn’t always easy, but when we give ourselves permission to make mistakes, are kind to ourselves and know that we can always count on our friends, we can feel like we can achieve anything.