Seven Steps To Believing In Yourself
By Krupa Balasubramanya - April 22, 2019
The mantra “believe in yourself” is one that we hear everywhere, all the time. From Disney films to self-help books, the ability to believe in oneself can sometimes seem like the key to everything—by “believing in yourself” you’ll be able to conquer challenges, defeat monsters, showcase your finest skills, make all your dreams come true. Sounds great, right? But what does “believing in yourself” actually mean? And where do you even begin?
Let’s break the idea of “believing in yourself” down to seven simple concepts. Each of these concepts comes with its own step on the road to believing in yourself and manifesting your fullest potential—and believe me: they work.
1. Recognize your strengths and acknowledge your weaknesses.
How do you see yourself when you look in a mirror? Do you celebrate what you see, or do you waste your time only pointing out perceived weaknesses in your reflection. Is your self-talk empowering and supportive, or self-sabotaging?
Now, think about how your friends and family describe you. Would the people who love and care about you ever be as critical of you as you are of yourself? Chances are, the people in your life who see you for who you are use their words and actions to lift you up and celebrate you—and that’s exactly how you should treat yourself as well.
You’re not perfect? No problem! (Guess what: nobody is.) Not only is believing in yourself about recognizing all your great attributes and the skills and talents you bring to the world, it’s also about acknowledging your weaknesses—and then using your self-belief to transform them.
2. Focus on the light at the end of the tunnel—the tunnel to believing in yourself, that is.
Let’s be honest: the start of any journey is filled with the unknown, and that can make it scary—even when that journey is all about learning to believe in yourself and celebrate who you are. If you struggle with self-belief—giving into negative self-talk or only focusing on the things you think you won’t succeed at or don’t love about yourself—then it’s time to focus on how you imagine believing in yourself will feel, rather than how you might be challenged in this current moment. Ask yourself: what would believing in myself feel like in my body? How would my self-talk change? How would having more self-belief change my life, my decisions, my actions? Focus on your ideal end-goal, as you take small and methodical—however unfamiliar—steps towards believing in yourself.
3. Align your mind, body, and soul for the journey.
Maybe you struggle to believe in yourself because you’ve felt betrayedby yourself—or even others—in the past. If you’ve made decisions or taken actions in confidence, only to have the results turn out all wrong, it makes sense that you’d lose some faith in yourself and your abilities. If you’ve invited others to accompany you on your journey, only to have them hurt or disappoint you, your self-belief has probably been shaken even more.
But here’s the thing: self-belief isn’t negated by mistakes or even failure. Rather, your self-belief should be supported by your ability to face challenges, struggle, and even heartache, and land on the other side. This doesn’t mean you’ll be unscathed. But you will have gained valuable insight and knowledge into who you really are and what you really want—and you should also consider this a great boost to your confidence in your ability to tackle whatever curveballs life throws your way.
4. Look deep inside. (Aka: inside your soul. Not your shirt.)
Before you can truly believe in yourself, you’ve got to get real with yourself—and that means making time to tune into your deepest, most authentic, most hidden being. Forget the iPhone airbrushing and hashtags of social media: who are you really? What elements of your life give you the greatest, most fulfilling joy? Are you moving in the direction of those things, or does the busy, grinding rat-race of daily life get in the way of your deepest desires?
Once you know exactly what you want and who you want to be, figure out what you need to go after those things with the fullest force of yourself backing you up. Maybe you need to talk to a life or career coach. Maybe you need to tell a friend about your goals, so she can help keep you accountable. Maybe you need to take some action steps to manifest abundance in your life. Whatever you decide to do, if it’s done in service to your most authentic self, you can’t go wrong.
5. Adopt a “just do it” mindset.
Sometimes there will come a time in your life—or many times—when you feel cornered. It appears as though life only has one option for you, and you’ve got to move in that direction whether you want to or not. In these instances, rather than giving into the impulse to over-analyze, search for alternatives you already know aren’t there, or resist the inevitable change, it’s better to “just do it.” Accept the change or transformation process that is coming your way, and dive into it with everything you’ve got. Chances are, if you really have only one option in front of you, that’s a clear sign that the universe is sending you some pretty direct signals.
6. Dig in with determination—and balance.
There are seasons in life when we’ll have our noses pressed to the grindstone, digging in with all we’ve got and moving forward with relentless determination. And don’t get me wrong: determination is great! We need determination in order to live our lives with conviction, confidence, and all kinds of positive self-belief.
At the same time, we also need balance. When determination becomes self-sacrificing, it’s time to take a break and find some balance. Self-care is a key practice for believing in yourself—and you’ll need it in order to maintain your determination, as well. Don’t drown yourself in the projects of progress, change, and transformation. Rather, practice self-belief by believing yourself when your mind or body says it’s time for a little break. As much as you dive headfirst into the seas of determination and transformation, keep coming back up for air and light.
7. Everyone has beliefs and opinions—own yours.
Finally, it’s a simple fact of life that at points along your journey to self-belief you’re going to encounter people, things, or circumstances who try to jolt you off course. After doing all the hard work of discovering your most authentic self and your deepest desires, assessing what you need for success and asking for help, forgiving yourself and others of past mistakes, and moving forward with confidence and conviction, the LAST thing you want to do is let the unwelcome opinions and attitudes of others block your path towards believing in yourself. So don’t. Own who you are and the work that you’ve done, and let the naysayers proceed on their own journeys—journeys that definitely do not have to align with yours. This is the ultimate manifestation of believing in yourself, after all: being faced with opposition, and choosing yourself. Every single time.