how to get your confidence back

How to Get Your Confidence Back

Getting confidence is one thing, getting your confidence back is a substantially different one. You see, people who’ve always lacked confidence in a certain area aren’t familiar with the emotion and they have a hard time grasping the associated behavior.

On the other hand, people who had confidence in a certain area at some point but they’ve lost it are familiar with the emotion and the related behavior, they’ve just lost touch with them. What they need is to get those emotions to surface again.

This is easier than inventing them from scratch, but it is also different in many ways and it requires a customized approach. Here are my top ideas on how to get your confidence back:

1. Remember the Feeling

It’s a lot easier to get a feeling of confidence when you need it if you get reacquainted with that feeling when you had it. The better you can remember that positive state of confidence you had, the more you can leverage it.

One highly effective exercise for this is past visualization. What you do is think about a specific situation in the past when you felt very confident even if now you may lack confidence in similar situations. You close your eyes, get conformable and visualize the situation.

Make the visualization as vivid as possible; remember as much of the details as you can, as if that past experience was really happening right now. As you do so, you’ll notice that feeling of self-assurance coming back strong and you’ll become familiar with it again.

2. Model Your Own Thinking

One of the most important discoveries in modern psychology is that our feelings are often triggered and reinforced by our cognitive schemas and the way we think.

The good news if you used to be confident is that you already have a way of thinking somewhere in your head that boosts confidence. What you need to do is dig it out and put it into practice again.

Past visualization is also a wonderful tool for discovering your past ways of thinking that created confidence. As you discover them, you can consciously begin to apply them in the present: talk to yourself the way you used to, focus mentally on the things you used to and you’ll begin to feel the way you used to.

3. Act As If

One of the perks of having had confidence in the past is that you also behaved confidently. That means that in your past-self, you already have a model for self-assured behavior.

Remember that behavior with as much clarity as possible and consciously begin to practice it in the present. This is acting ‘as if’ you were that confident person again. It may not be easy at first, but since you have it in you, it will quickly become natural.

The mind and the body are connected. Feelings influence behavior, but it also works the other way. As you act as if you were confident, since your mind already has a memory of such behavior, it will begin to elicit that same state of confidence associated with that behavior. Thus, you become confident by acting confidently.

Learning how to get your confidence back is a matter of using the right tools and wisely using the past to rejuvenate the present.

It is also a matter of consistent practice. It may be easier to get confidence back than to get it for the first time, but it still not easy. It requires making it a priority, practicing daily and sticking to it. As you do so, you will see remarkable changes in your attitude and progress in your life.

Eduard Ezeanu is a communication coach with an attitude-based approach. If you enjoyed this article, also learn how to gain confidence and find out how to overcome shyness from two top articles on his People Skills Decoded blog.

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  • Ahmed

    Thanks very much….it was a useful article…

  • http://potatoehead64.blogspot.com/ Marty

    Very useful and makes sense. I’ve used this concept with a client in the past. Encouraging the client to remember a time when life was better produced a visual change in body language. I fed that back to him. That really got his attention!

    I think it is also useful to take a moment to live the moment when things are going and and resolve to remember it. I used to spend too much time worrying about the coming fall, thereby calling it into being. As a result of the change in my attitude, the dip has not come into being.

  • http://www.savalliworks.com Louis Savalli

    Very good article – straight, to the point, and I can relate with my own experiences on confidence.

    I will espouse awareness here – usually through meditation – on what incorrect perspective or attitude affects your confidence. My experience is that some false world-view(s) (almost always unconscious) cause us to feel less confident and less sure of ourselves.

    As we let awareness in, and learn what these attitudes are, we’re literally pulling out the problems by the root. Each time you heal one of these attitudes, you’ll feel the difference right away and then some as time goes on.

  • http://mazzastick.com Mazzastick

    Confidence is an essential ingredient to experiencing an abundant life. Most people that are experiencing lack in their life have problems with feeling confident. Learning some mental discipline could help greatly with confidence issues.

  • http://www.amazon.com/Pop-Psychology-psychology-everyday-ebook/dp/B003HKRGPC/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2&s=books&qid=1296569397&sr=8-3 Pop_Psychology_By_Bakari_Akil_II_PhD

    A lot of good points. One of the principles I stress to people is that we all have successes that we can draw from. I urge my students to create lists that they can carry around with them and read it whenever they need encouragement.

  • http://letgoandflow.com David

    I think “Act as if” embodies what confidence is. No matter how many times you do something, every situation is unique in some way. “Act as if” is what I do to transcend the newness of any situation.

  • http://www.balancedworklife.com/blog Bryce Christiansen

    Really good distinction you make. I think another tip that has helped me regain my confidence when it has gone away in the past has been to set myself up for a win.

    If you can start building momentum again by making a small series of wins, you will find your self becoming more and more confident in the bigger problems you need to overcome.

  • http://www.selfoptimizing.com Debbie B.

    When you can convince yourself that you have confidence, you will convince others as well. The mind is a powerful thing!

  • http://livingthebalancedlife.com Living the Balanced Life

    This post was very helpful. I used to be a very confident woman, very infuential in my peer group. After a nervous breakdown, I am having a difficult time regaining even a portion of that confidence back. All three of these tips will be helpful, epscially *Acting as if*.
    Thanks!
    Bernice
    Be authentic, be engaging, and be ready for change

  • http://www.discover-the-meaning-of-tarot.com Discover Tarot Cards

    I think that everyone has times where their self-confidence is shaken, if not shattered.

    The point about remembering the feeling is very evocative. After all, what is more powerful than allowing ourselves to reconnect to former periods of success.

    Miss L

    Tarot card meanings, tarot spreads and much more at Discover Tarot Cards!

  • http://www.thereflectiveself.com Dandy

    Hi Eduard,
    Wonderful post! A long time ago a therepist of mine told me about the “act as if” technique. It really does work! When we straighten our posture, make eye contact, and project our voices (and speak with an air of authority) it sends a message to our brains. It affects our thoughts. Your tips are smart! Thanks so much!

  • http://www.onemillionandbeyond.com Matt

    In many ways it can be just as hard to get confidence back as it is to get it in the first place; knowing what you can achieve but having mental blocks in place that hinder you can be incredibly frustrating. The Fake it till you make it approach is surprisingly effective… though I’m sure the other two are equally good and I’ll test them out when I get a chance.

  • Arden Casabay

    nice post!i love it..

  • http://www.123selfconfidence.com Syeelah S.

    Wow, I was looking around for a good blog with great content about this topic, and I found you through Technorati…

    Thanks. Fantastic content!

  • http://i-will-overcome-shyness.com Allison at Overcome Shyness

    Great advice! I love using past visualization.. it’s easier to tap into past feelings of confidence sometimes rather than trying to pull it out of thin air. :) I just wrote about confidence for my site on how to overcome shyness and found your article by chance!

  • howcanibeconfident

    I love your blog and think it’s going to help a great many people in terms of confidence. If you guys want super help in the confidence department, you should check out this ebook that’s selling like hotcakes. It’s made a big difference in a lot of people’s lives.

    You can find it here: http://howcanibeconfident.com/

  • Swaraj1933

    thanks….

  • http://flawlessconfidence.com Martin

    As as if is the best technique. It works like a self-fulfilling prophecy. Instead of telling yourself that you’re shy and acting like a shy person, tell yourself that you’re confident and start acting as a confident person even if you don’t feel like one. It’ll change your mind. And once you start feeling more confident, you can start working on other aspects of your self-confidence.

  • Turnercarolyn24

    suck

  • Ghjjbg

    thanx this will help

  • Andrew

    thank you…i used to be confident in high school…now its time for me to be confident again and share my best self with the world 

    • Carson

      amen brother

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/U73RM2E6RBN4IAJ7AANFNC3V3Q Hataya

    i love the illustration.very meaningful!

  • Sharanayya

    Thanks very much………. it is good in our life.

  • theking 4

    Even the lion cover his face, that’s how I feel some time

  • pinky

    I used to be so happy n confient didnt care wat ppl think now im working on getting back to myself n gain my confident back this page is helping me alot thanks

  • floridbrez

    I have totally lost my confidence I am definitely going to use these idas because I can remember when I felt that and want it back

  • mohammad

    thank you for all your book and….

  • Bob

    Thank you so much! You really spot on my emotions. I am so grateful to you. You made me learnt a valuable lesson in life. I love your article!

  • Sarah

    This is great and all. But it’s very difficult getting it back. It’s like trying to loose weight when you are allergic to healthy food.
    It’s also very difficult when you have learning difficulties or / and Aspergers and everyone treats you like you don’t deserve to exist.

    Maybe if people weren’t so Fcucking cruel and clueless about the world they live in. People would not only have the motivation but the actual freedom (that they don’t have) to live a happy fullfilling life.