Living your life in fear leads to a miserable existence, but finding ways for improving self confidence can help you get off that unwanted path. If you are reading this article then odds are you believe you need improvement in this area, and believe it or not, that is a start. Below are a few examples of low self confidence. Don't get depressed if you find that some of these examples describe you; the answers to change immediately follow them.

• Covering up mistakes quickly before anyone can notice.
• Not speaking up when you disagree with someone.
• Avoiding conflict and risk taking. Staying in your comfort zone.
• Not taking proper credit for jobs well done.nervous blue ball

Tips To Improve Your Self Confidence

1- Become more physically fit. Improving your overall fitness level will permeate into every nook and cranny of your life…in a positive way. If you are clearly not fit then this is perhaps the one single thing you can do that will affect your life the most. If you are already in pretty good shape, take a look at any weaknesses and improve on them (flexibility, balance, agility, speed, etc.).

2- Make a list of goals. Setting and completing goals is a great written record that you can look back on and be proud of. Start by writing down a major goal that will cause improvement in your life in some way (no vacations to Ireland). Then list several manageable mini-goals that will allow you to put a check mark beside that big one. Read "Goals!" by Brian Tracy for greater guidance here.

3- Cleanliness and neatness is important. Most of us don't feel at our best when we are filthy and smelly. In fact this is one thing that will directly affect how people see and react to you. The next time you take a hot bath or shower take note on how it makes you feel (better or worse?). Take it one step further and put on some nice clothes, and I guarantee this will make you feel better about yourself (if only a little).

4- Begin to confront your fears. Doing something that you have been afraid to do, even if you fail, will have an extraordinary affect on your self confidence. You don't have to start off with a big one such as heights; if you sit down and make out a list I'm sure you can come up with several big and small things that make you nervous. Start out with the smaller ones and eventually you'll want to tackle the bigger ones. One warning, the courage won't come until after you face your fear.

5- Get to know yourself a little bit better. The process of self discovery will be long and possibly never ending, but it is an important part of building up your self confidence. When you know who you are, what lines you are and are not willing to cross, and things that you like or dislike then you are less likely to be intimidated by the words of others. One way to start to get an idea of which moral values you covet is to write down 100 things you like and 100 things you don't like. Take several days to mull over the lists and write down concrete words that come up again and again (honesty, wealth, fitness, creativity, etc.). Afterward you should have a good idea of what you are all about.

6- Preparation doesn't guarantee success but will up the odds. Try to be prepared as well as you can be for any endeavor and I promise that things will go much smoother for you. Research shows that every minute spent in preparation equals ten minutes of execution, so don't skimp here.

7- Carry yourself well. This point is primarily directed at your posture and the way in which you talk to people. Always try to stand tall and upright. When you slouch, you not only do damage to your spine but others may consider you a lazy person. Sit upright.  If you sit for a majority of your day, invest in a great chair.  When talking to others speak slowly and clearly so that they can understand what you are saying. Be polite about any interruptions you make when others are talking and maintain eye contact about 70% of the time. I have seen a homeless man treated with great respect due to him having the characteristics above, and I'm sure it will help your situation as well.

8- Skill smooths the journey. Whenever we are good at something, it makes us feel good about ourselves. Pick out a skill that you like or are interested in learning and begin to set aside a little time each day to perfect it. Eventually you may even become an expert in it.

9- Realize that failure is necessary. Anthony Robbins says, "There's no such thing as failure, there's only feedback."  
Everyone must come face to face with failure at some point. Some may fail more publicly than others, but the reality is we all fail.  Learn from your mistakes: what worked well, what didn't work at all, and what to do next time.  

10- Help yourself by helping others. When I help someone, in even the smallest of ways, it brings up immense feelings of satisfaction that I can get in no other way.  I'm reminded of my own blessings when I show gratitude by helping others.

11- Your inner voice can give you strength or weakness. Positive and negative thoughts can really change everything about how we perceive our surroundings. The good (and bad) about this is that they are so easily changed…we just have to consciously decide to do it. 

12- A call to action will need to be made. You can read all the tips and gather all the knowledge in the world but eventually you will need to act. There will be a time when you need to say, "The time for gathering information is over." Only you can decide when that time is, but one thing is for sure; nothing happens without action.

Additional Recommended Reading:

Inspirational Self Improvement Quotes To Put On The Wall

Turn failure into success

Failing Forward: Turning Mistakes into Stepping Stones for Success
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