How to boost your self-confidence: three practical steps

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Self-confidence tips

Whether in your personal life or at work, use the techniques of visualisations, journaling and affirmations to maximise your self-belief

Katie Piper, author and broadcaster, shares her methods for improving your self-confidence and explains why feeling confident is key to realising your full potential.

It’s easy, sometimes, to look at someone who appears at ease and assume they’re brimming with confidence, but the truth is that we all have varying degrees of this often-envied trait and we’d all like to be a bit more confident.

Most people’s struggle comes down to consistency, and it’s worth remembering that we’re all striving for that balance. While someone may excel in confidence in the workplace, they might struggle with confidence in personal relationships – and vice versa. Some may be crippled by a lack of confidence, while others may be able to push themselves out there but know they could benefit from more of it.

It’s easy to assume that self-confidence and self-esteem are the same thing, but conversations with psychiatrists and therapists have convinced me that they’re not. Self-esteem is about knowing your self-worth and boundaries, while confidence is the ability to actually exercise and enforce this.

Why is that important? I believe that living confidently allows us to realise the essence of who we are. It makes us strong, and that’s when we can break through walls and realise our full potential.

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The good news is that anyone can get there. It’s very much a journey, and sometimes a roller-coaster, but it’s important to remember that’s OK; it’s about understanding that and setting yourself goals. And you can’t wait for it to come to you, or for someone else to make it happen. It has to come from you.

Over the years, I’ve found methods that help. I believe the most important thing is that the body achieves what the mind believes. The mind is one of the most powerful tools we possess: use it positively and you’ll reap the benefits, use it negatively and you’ll suffer as a result.

The greatest confidence detractor is making comparisons with other people’s lives, social media and apparent confidence – after all, it could all be a façade. Comparison is the thief of joy.

Visualising and putting pen to paper is hugely beneficial. We’re so quick to list the things we don’t want, but seldom document the things that we do. I swear by keeping a journal with a record of what you want to achieve, how happy and how confident you want to be, and what that looks like – what it means to you. Mapping out where you want to go and what you want from life is essential.

Another trick that I’ve learned along the way is to write down three things that you’re good at, or three things that you are to the people that matter in your life – and carry them in your bag in moments of self-doubt or low self-worth. Pull one out and read it out loud to yourself to remind you that you are great and you matter to someone. I use all of the above daily, and it helps me to be the person I am now.

Katie Piper is the author of Confidence: The Secret and Confidence: The Journal, both published by Quercus Books – and hosts the Extraordinary People podcast.

Katie Piper

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