How to build Self Confidence

I saw a video on confidence lately, and it has inspired me to make a post of my own, mainly because through my experiences, I can share some tips that work for me.


Confidence for me has always been a struggle. I’m a shy person by nature and get embarrassed very quickly, so to be confident is not something easy for me. Because it has been such a tricky thing, gaining even a little ounce of it has made me feel that I’ve achieved something big. I know many say not to care what others think, but it’s challenging, sometimes, easier said or thought than done. I think of all my negative emotion as something my body does to keep me safe.

Reasons and Solutions

I think the first thing we need to do is find out why you are not confident. I think a big part of low confidence is due to negative experiences with other people, so let’s break it down.

Nasty & Negative People

You may encounter this in real life or online, and they may be all degrees of nasty. For example, you are just the beautiful person you are, and someone says something insulting to you, telling you to die or quit whatever you are doing. These are the ones that hit the hardest and would make you wonder why you’re even bothering to try.


People online can say some pretty nasty things compared to real life, especially if you are a creator who put yourself out there. You’d probably get more insults online from strangers who think it’s fun to say random, hateful things just because they can, and that their identities are very anonymous.

Everyone is different in their tolerance levels, and I admire those who use hate to motivate them to do even better, such as the hate they received made them so very strong, and if you are one of them, go ahead and let the comments wash over you like fire and let it motivate you to do greatness. But if you don’t tolerate well to these comments and feel very depressed for a long time, then it’s best not to read them at all, or not allow them to come through. It may seem cowardly, but I believe we all can choose what we understand and not read. I mean, if you were living in your own home and someone came to insult you, you’d probably shut the door on them, so why can’t we do it online? I know how hard it is to forget these nasty comments, and if it affects you severely, don’t let it happen. Don’t even put yourself through this!

The best thing to do is to install some word filter and remove all words that are insulting to you. For example, the word “retard” and “ugly” are two words in my no-no list, as in nobody should ever be told that. These words would be filtered out of anything that accepts comments. You don’t need certain words in your life, and insults like this do absolutely nothing productive, it doesn’t even help offer pointers for improvement, so they are a complete waste of time.

One thing you can do if you read a bad comment is to go to their profile and see what else they get up to. Chances are, this person is going around random places saying the same crap to others, so if you see that, you may realize they’re not targeting you, but they are looking for an outlet to release their built up rage. You can probably guess that this person is unhappy in some ways, or that you said something that hit their nerve and pissed them off. Remember, they are probably not judging you as a person, because they don’t even know you.

{real life}

If you are dealing with people in real life, such as at school, you can try not to hang around them. If they are actively saying things to you, then you need to do something about it. Firstly, act like their words do not affect you. The colder you are, the more they are likely to give up trying. If you look hurt, they are only going to try more.

Secondly, try and find out why they are doing it. Sometimes it could be as silly as because you are different from everyone else. I always believe a school should teach students that difference is okay and that nobody should be made fun of because they stand out from the crowd. Other reasons may be due to jealousy (friend’s friend can often be jealous of you if they don’t know you well), so if you can determine the reason, it will be much easier to tackle the problem.

Tell someone about it, someone you know will care. Be sure to get them to take you seriously. Work out a solution with someone who can help. If nobody does, call a helpline, make it public (start a Facebook page, write a letter and give it to everyone), do anything to provide it with attention and get more people to know about it!

Negative Experiences

Perhaps you asked your crush out for a date, and they rejected you, or that you built what you thought was the most amazing site, and your boss totally threw it at your face, saying it needed to be redone. These experiences can truly break a person’s confidence, and I think when you experience negative emotions due to these experiences, you really just want to avoid


If you are rejected in any way, please remember that it’s more likely to do with what specific requirements the others have, than you not being good enough. Think about your ideal partner, and how many amazing friends who are awesome inside and out, but would not be people you’d have a relationship with. I am attracted personally to people who can express emotions, but those who don’t are worse in any way, it’s just that certain features may attract someone. If you are rejected, it may possibly be that they’re simply not interested. They may not even know you well enough to determine what kind of person you really are.

{critised work}

If you have worked hard on something only to have someone higher say it’s crap, then you are totally not alone. I think the best way to deal with that is first to see if you can handle these things before deciding on the field. If you get too affected, perhaps it’s better to do things for yourself than for a boss. I personally like making my own websites than to make it for others, because I know what I like, and it’s easier to deal with negative comments from people than a boss who won’t like your work and wants you to redo it.

Sometimes, it’s worthwhile to break down what they are saying, ask them why if possible, so you can more of an explanation. You may actually realize that there’s room for improvement. The key to not feeling too angry about it is as detached from your work as possible, so that means not caring about it that much, not thinking it’s your baby, that it’s the greatest drawing you’ve done. Always initially look at it as a piece of work that can improve more, because the more you love it, the more comments can affect you.

Shyness and Being in Public Situations

I find that one of the hardest things to do is speaking in public, especially if it’s about something I’m not interested in, or good at. If you ask me to give a speech about my own website, then I can probably blow your socks off, but if you ask me to talk about the development of psychotherapy and how it has affected the human race, then I would probably stand there and stutter. The point is, it’s always easier to be confident if you are an expert in your own area, in which you are speaking to others about.

Look for your strengths and interests, and talk about these. Don’t try to talk about something you don’t know about. If you are stuck in a situation like that, I would suggest politely telling them that you need to leave. If you have friends who love to put you in an awkward situation with their friend who has different interests, I would suggest you only meet up when it’s the two of you, because three people can often result in one person feeling left out and awkward, if the other two know each other extremely well and have their sets of topics to talk about.

One really good idea is you may want to try and get to know that other person alone, the best method I think is to email or chat first, then perhaps have some one on one conversation with them. I believe in some ways, many of us are afraid to know new people and want to stick with the one we know. But once you know them, you may realize that you have things in common too. Often, you may think the other person is judging you, but in reality, they may be worried about you judging them.

{be an expert}

Practice makes perfect and if you are not feeling the confidence for something you have to present to people, or that you have to discuss in a group, do as much research for it as possible, so you know your stuff. If you are an awkward speaker, try and practice in front of the mirror. Do it until you see the word for word what you want to say. When you know something in your area really well, you are likely to be so much more confident.

Negative Self Image

{physical appearance}

One big reason to why we may have a negative self-image is our perception of ourselves, the way we look. You may simply just feel ugly. I think the best thing to do is first, see if there’s anything you can do physically to help build a better appearance. Believe me, a lot of times, we may feel ugly because of simple things we can fix, such as greasy, unwashed hair, certain hairstyles, acne, crooked teeth, being overweight. These are things luckily you can work on, and if you think about it, ugliness has a lot to do with health because most of the above indicate something unhygienic or unhealthiness.

If you hate the way you look when you have greasy hair, be sure you wash it more often. You may even want to get a nice, cool haircut to make it short so that it’s easier to wash. If you wear glasses and hate how you look, go to the store now and find one of those kickass, stylish glasses that makes you look like a star. If your hair is out of shape, get it styled or cut professionally. If you have acne, look into all kinds of ways to get rid of it. If you have crooked teeth, look into braces and if you are overweight, look into cooking healthy and an exercise regime, there are fun ways to exercise that doesn’t make it into the most horrible chore, such as walking the treadmill while watching shows on the iPad.

About the weight, try and treat it lightly if you could. For example, during pregnancy, I love to tell people how fat I am openly, and yes I have gained a lot of weight, like almost 20kg, and I totally do admit I am like, FAT, and you know what? I find the word fat funny, and I don’t really see it as an insult.

Whatever it is, do everything you can to improve your self-image, usually by really taking care of your health. If you achieved that, look in the mirror again, and you may just find that you look so much better.

Makeup is another thing totally worthwhile to get into, there are heaps of amazing makeup tutorial online which you can follow.

{other factors}

If you hate the way you look for more serious reasons, such as your appearance may remind you of someone you hate that’s abusive to you in the past, you may even want to look at plastic surgery, because things like that don’t ever go away, your mind, for self-protection, is likely to never like the way that person looked, no matter how much you try to forget it or even if you forgave them. It will keep that image to warn you of dangers, so rather than fight against such a determined mind, it may just be easier to change your appearance slightly if it truly bothers you that much.

{building self-image}

Taking photos is one of my favorite ways of building self-image, given that when you show photos to family and friends, they don’t tell you how bad you look in the photo. My suggestion is to dress up and take lots of photos with a good camera that will show the way you look in natural light. Do not use flash, ever! I think a lot of times, we’re not used to how we look because we never really see ourselves, but if we look at our photo often enough, especially one which we like of ourselves, we may start feeling better.

Take videos of yourself as well, as you may be surprised that you really don’t know how you sound or look. The image of yourself is often just a perception. In reality, you have no idea how you really look when you are talking or smiling. Take videos, watch them often to get used to it. Then, you will know how you look and sound in general!

{negative self-image}

If for some you were always told by someone, especially a family member or peers, that you were horrible, you may have severe self-esteem problems. I find the best solution for that is first, think about who you are now, your goals and dreams, what your intentions are. No matter what others say, as long as your intentions are great, you are a good person. You don’t need to be the most selfless person to be great, it’s totally okay to mess up, get into a silly argument or get angry over something that may seem crazy later on, or even seem petty or jealous. They are all normal human emotions and we are not super humans, nor do we have the ability to switch them off. It’s okay to feel these things, what matters is what you do with these emotions.

If you are told that you’re crap because of what someone else thinks, they’re just basing it on what they think they understood. Nobody truly knows you besides yourself, which means nobody has the power to tell you what kind of person you are.

If you’ve had some horrific experiences in the past, perhaps due to abuse, you have to realize that what they did was absolutely wrong. You must imagine yourself watching another person, perhaps someone you love dearly, be treated the way you would and imagine how you feel about them. Would you feel that they’re a shame and that they’re detestable, or would you want to protect and love them? Now visualize it on yourself, if you have suffered some kind of abuse, you need to shower yourself with love and protection just like you would for anyone else in the situation! Another thing to remember is that the experiences you had, though very horrible, has made you walk the path you are today. If something in the past changed, you may get a completely different future. Perhaps even the things you do love now won’t exist, or the people you’ve met may not exist either. I do believe that every past decision creates the future you are now.

{smile often and help others}

One thing that really helps me feel great is when I am able to offer advice to others. For example, I like to write about my experiences and offer help to those who may have gone through something similar, and every time I hear from someone that it helped them, or that I could talk to someone and help them with their problems, it really makes my day and makes me feel like I’m a very good, worthwhile person.

Remember that you may just be one person, but your precious words can change someone’s entire world for the better.

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