“Your self-image naturally sets the boundaries of your accomplishments. Change your self-image and your whole world of success and achievement will change.”Mandy Evill
Below, I outline ten concrete actions you can take to increase your self-confidence and step more boldly through life once your build a strong and positive self-image.
While this list is not comprehensive, taking just a few of these actions will help to put you squarely on the path to a fuller and more rewarding life.
To get started, I suggest you choose a couple of items on the list that appeal to you and practice them for a week. Whatever you pick will make you feel better about yourself and your self-image, some almost immediately.
Then, when you notice your confidence is building, take a few other actions to take it to an even higher level.
10 Actions to Build Your Self-Image
1. Clean up your self-image.
We all have a mental picture of ourselves planted in our subconscious minds. And that image determines the results we get in every area of our life—we cannot outperform it. However, over time, you can change this image. Each day, you can use visualisation, affirmations, journaling, life scripts or other tools to photoshop your self-image. The key is to practice seeing, thinking, and feeling yourself the way you want to become, and the new image will begin to take root.
2. Dress nicely.
It’s incredible how much more confident you feel when you shower and put on nice clothes. You’ll feel successful and presentable and ready to greet and take on the world. It will turn your mood around, and you’ll carry yourself with more confidence. You’ll talk to people more positively, and people will take notice of you.
3. Get to know your personal self-image.
Even though we might think we know ourselves well, psychological studies prove otherwise. They indicate that most of us are deluded about ourselves and our capabilities. Much of that can be attributed to our beliefs. We have ideas about ourselves that do not serve us well. However, your beliefs are based on your evaluation of a situation. And frequently, when you re-evaluate the situation, your belief about it will change completely.
The next time you feel insecure or like you’re incapable of accomplishing something, look at the situation from a new perspective. And recognise it’s not a beneficial belief to have. Do that a few times, and you’ll see that many of your limitations are not limitations but rather symptoms of negative beliefs. Also, think about the good things about yourself—the things you can do well, the things you like, the things you’ve accomplished, the successes you’ve had. Dig deep within yourself, and with time, you’ll emerge with greater self-confidence.
4. Pay attention to what you say.
This one applies primarily to while you’re at work or in any situation where you want to convey confidence or persuade others. When you want to get the point across or express a big new idea, being mindful of your vocabulary and tone can help you flourish or maybe even impress a demanding boss, client, or prospect.
5. Increase your competence.
Study and practice your craft to become better at it. Start with something small that you know you can do. For instance, if you want to be a more competent writer, start by writing more. In addition, set aside 15-30 minutes a day to read articles and books on writing. Your competence and confidence will grow day by day by implementing these practices.
6. Make sure your goals and values are in harmony.
Do you know what your values are? When you take the time to think through your fundamental values and then commit yourself to living your life consistent with them, you feel a surge of mental strength and determination. Therefore, you feel more centred in the universe and better able to accomplish the goals you set for yourself.
7. Change a habit.
It’s not easy to change a habit, so start with something small, like waking up 15 minutes earlier or meditating for 10 minutes a day. If you do it for a month, you’ll be eager to continue or improve the practice.
8. Get physical.
Exercise is one of the most empowering things you can do for your self-esteem. It can make you look and feel better—physically, mentally and emotionally. It doesn’t take much. You’ll see benefits from just taking a walk a few times a week.
9. Learn about your potential.
You can do this in many ways, but one of the surest ways to do it is by reading/studying books and attending seminars. You can also learn about your potential by watching, listening to and studying successful people around you. In short you will automatically become more confident as you discover who you are.
10. Do something.
If you change what you do, you change what you are. In other words, taking action to accomplish something is almost always better than not doing anything. Of course, doing something could lead to mistakes, but mistakes are a natural and necessary part of life. It’s how we learn. Without mistakes, we’d never get better.
How to build and shift your Self-Image, in a positive way, is one of the main and most powerful teachings in our Coaching and Mentoring Programme.