Once confidence has been lost or negatively impacted, doubt and uncertainty start to play a bigger role. From there, it is common to move towards a negative cycle of behaviour that is difficult to break, unless you have the right tools and techniques to enable you to do so. The good news is that your confidence is not lost or damaged forever, it has simply been overlaid by self doubt, which can be addressed, overcome or removed, and full confidence restored. Confidence is there inside you at all times. It just needs to be brought to the surface, or the barriers upon it removed, in order for your confidence to thrive and allow you to enjoy increased levels of success.
Your current level of self-confidence can be detected in many ways - your behavior, your body language, how you speak, what you say, and so on. For example, people with high levels of self confidence will: Accept compliments graciously, typically say things like, “Thanks, I really worked hard on that project;” Do what they believe to be right, even if others mock or criticize them for it; Admit their mistakes, and learn from them; Show willingness to take risks and move out with their comfort zone to achieve better things. In contrast, people who display low levels of self confidence will: Dismiss compliments immediately, saying things like, “Oh that was nothing really, anyone could have done it;” Govern their behavior based on what other people think; Work hard to cover up mistakes and hope that they can remedy the problem before anyone notices; Stay in their comfort zone, fear the consequences of failure and avoid taking risks. Which of these traits do you recognize in yourself? Take time to think through your answers and contemplate the impact that they are having on your levels of confidence and success. Do you want to change any of these behaviours? What impact would that make on your life if you did change these behaviours?
There are two main contributors to self-confidence. These are self-efficacy and self-esteem. We gain a sense of self-efficacy when we see ourselves mastering skills and achieving goals, no matter how small. This promotes the confidence that, if we learn and work hard in a particular area, we will succeed. It is this type of confidence that leads people to address difficult challenges and persist in the face of setbacks. This overlaps with the idea of self-esteem, which is a more general sense that we can cope with what is going on in our lives and that we have a right to be happy. Partly, this comes from a feeling that the people around us approve of us, which we may or may not be able to control. However, it also comes from the sense that we are behaving virtuously, that we're competent at what we do, and that we can compete successfully when we put our mind to it.
Any lack in these areas is a barrier to confidence and success. Where there is something missing, we need to fill the gaps in order to enjoy healthier levels of confidence and success. The good news is, if you put your mind to it, this can be achieved. Having low confidence actually leads to achieving poorer results in life. So, dedicate yourself to improving your confidence and improving your results by reading through this section of the website and put into practice all the techniques suggested.