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Many people ask ‘How do I gain confidence in myself?’

When you lack Confidence, it can seem like you may never develop it, or regain it.

We can all lack confidence in some areas, and feel fine in others. Like; being ok in a close friend or family group, to feeling panicky at the thought of standing up and talking about ourselves in front of others!

There are times in everyone’s life, where life events can seem to sap your confidence. Being out of work for sometime due to illness or redundancy. Maybe having children, moving to a new area, or country, and starting work for the first time.

There are times when low confidence can seep into everyday and starts to prevent you living life fully. Meaning you may miss out on opportunities, because you don’t feel confident enough to put yourself forward.

If you suffer with a lack of confidence, one thing to know is you are not alone. It is more common than you may think, even though some people seem very confident, that doesn’t mean they are!

Three small things that you can do, that start to increase your confidence:

  1. write down a list of all you have achieved from being young. Learning to ride a bike, or swim, playing a sport, dancing, for example. Or learning an instrument; getting badges from youth groups; learning to cook – even something very simple; to sew / woodwork and make something. Any certificates you have, learning to drive, to type, to read and to write! The first time you did a journey by yourself; overcoming illness or tragedy; getting your first job or work experience, helping others, friendships, being there for family and friends… the list goes on.
  2. Get a little notebook, and every day for 21 days – write down 3 things each day that either made you laugh or smile and feel happy, even if only for a moment. Then after 21 days read them all back and then carry on if you want to. This is great to do with children near bedtime; just ask them what made them laugh today and see what they say!
  3. Watch a film, programme or comedian that makes you laugh out loud! Laughter is contagious and it helps us reduce stress and live in the moment, and the feeling lasts.

Try and see how you feel.

The next steps would then be to very gently step out of your comfort zone, and try a small thing like complimenting someone else, and making them smile.

Arrange a day out to visit something very different, a train journey to the city or beach; an exhibition; or animal sanctuary; a theme park. Even though your heart may beat a little faster, tell yourself ‘just do it’. **Go with supportive people, or on your own. This is about gentle steps, not anything that makes you feel terrified. Do your planning on times of journey’s there and back, opening times, distance to venues etc… and have some fun.

I hope this helps in some way

Andrea

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