The trick to accomplishing anything is thinking you can do it. In other words, confidence is key. Many of the confidence killers we inflict on ourselves are thing we don’t even realize we’re doing.
But as with any behavior, these habits that slowly kill your spirit can be unlearned. The first step, of course, is recognizing them.
Check yourself to see if you have any of these 10 confidence-killing habits.
#1 People Pleasing – saying yes to everything
Saying “yes” to everyone stems from a desire to feel needed and liked. When you focus on pleasing others, you neglect yourself. Pleasing yourself is not selfish. It’s necessary. When you focus on your needs instead of everyone else’s, you reinforce that you matter. Stop linking your self-confidence to others’ approval. Instead show up for YOU!
#2 Using Always and Never
Your language is a reflection of how you feel about yourself and feeds your confidence, or not.
Using the words ‘always’ and ‘never’ is a common unconscious confidence-destroying habit that leaves you feeling like you have no ability to make changes, when that’s hardly the case.
Anytime you find yourself saying ‘always’ and ‘never’, you are destroying your confidence. Because of their seemingly absolute, black and white, all or nothing nature, you’re setting yourself up to feel hopeless, helpless and less confident.
#3 Maintaining toxic friendships
We truly are who we spend time with. If we are surrounded by people who are lazy, complain or have a victim mentality, then that is who we become.
If there are toxic people in your life who threaten your self-worth and significantly chip away at your self-esteem, it’s time to kick those relationships to the curb.
Seek out positive reinforcement, not haters.
Get a tighter rein on the positive influences. Hone your friend group and be intentional with who you surround yourself with. Make sure you’re surrounded by those who have your best interests at heart, and who love you and want to see you thrive.
#4 Bullying Yourself
You say things to yourself that you would never say to another person. These sound like, “I’m not good enough. I’m a loser. Or, I’m so stupid.” Constantly speaking to yourself this way will have the same effect as if someone else were saying those things to you, which can deal a serious blow to your self-confidence.
#5 Focusing on Your Weaknesses
The more we talk about our perceived negative traits, the more we will believe them. Not only that, but focusing on those flaws leads our subconscious mind to look for evidence that this belief is true and create new experiences to support it. At a certain point, these perceptions will turn into a self-created reality.
#6 Comparing Yourself to Others
When you compare yourself to someone who you perceive as better than you it diminishes your confidence. We have the tendency to tell ourselves that, compared to someone else, we aren’t qualified to do our job or lack the ability to be a good parent, partner, friend, or listener.
But by doing so, you’re likely to feel as if it isn’t even worth trying to live up to your expectations, thus enacting a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Instead, only compare yourself to those you can learn from. What are they doing or what do they have that you want? How did they get there? What attributes to you admire about them? How can you use this new knowledge to move forward?
#7 Spending Time on Social Media
Social media can have damaging effects on self-esteem and self-image. If negative comments or a lack of likes and interaction are getting you down, it’s time for a social media hiatus. Try to remind yourself that social media, in the grand scheme of things, is a pretty superficial place. And remember, the only validation that matters is the kind you find inside yourself.
#8 Not Admitting When You’re Wrong
Confidence is crucial, but over-confidence is downright dangerous. Knowing when to admit you are wrong is an important step in maintaining your self-esteem, because confidence doesn’t mean being right all the time. It also means being self-aware. You’ll learn that even when you make mistakes the world doesn’t come to an end. Own it. Admit your mistake. Forgive yourself. And move on.
#9 Neglecting Yourself
One of the main ways you can damage your confidence is not engaging in self-care. Not scheduling doctor appointments, cancelling training sessions at the gym, or eating like garbage send subconscious messages to your brain that you are not worth the time, money and energy necessary to lead a healthy life.
#10 Playing the victim
Thinking people are out to get you, that you are always wrong, or that you have terrible luck, are all damaging to your self-confidence. These thoughts can lead you to think the world is against you and that no matter what you do, it’s never good enough. Begin by reframing your thoughts to “That didn’t go as I had hoped, but next time will be better because I’m smarter now.”
When you are confident you will:
- feel happy, valuable, fulfilled
- feel worthy of the good things in your life
- easily cope with life’s challenges
- be productive
- trust yourself to show up for YOU
- stop looking for external validation because loving yourself is where true confidence thrives.
The fastest way to change the way you think about yourself is to change your behavior.
Identify which habits above you want to change and take one small step to start today.
Don’t forget to download your free confidence building guide.