How to build confidence in 10 steps

It doesn’t matter if you’re trying to get girls or negotiating a higher salary at work, your level of confidence can make or break your success.

By Ed Latimore Last modified

Self-confidence is paramount to achieving any goal. If you think of yourself as a failure, you’re always going to fail.

Fortunately, there are many ways to get more confident.

In this post, I list a few of them. By the way, if this is something you’re interested in, I’ve literally written the book on self-confidence. Check out my book on self-confidence here.


1. Change your wording to build confidence

There is no such thing as failure if you actually went for something but the outcome wasn’t what you desired. Yes, you didn’t get what you wanted but you did learn something.

If you don’t use what you learn to improve yourself, then you’re a failure. As long as you are improving and learning, you’re never truly failing. You may learn slowly but if the trend is accumulation rather than degradation, you’re doing just fine.

Small improvements, over time, result in big time change. Focus on improving the process. The outcome will take care of itself.


2. Believe that nothing is impossible

The universe says only two things are impossible: perpetual motion and violation of causality. In other words, everything runs out of energy and you can’t reverse the flow of time.

If it’s been done before, it can be done again. It may be difficult. It may require more than you’re willing or able to give. But whatever you want can be accomplished.

You’re missing out on the best things in life because you believe greatness is impossible for you. Nothing is impossible. Believe this, even when the circumstances say otherwise.


3. You are insignificant

Scientist estimate that the universe is about 13.82 billion years old. I’ll write it again differently so that the point is made. The universe is 13,000,000,000,000 years.

That’s 15 digits long. You’re only going to live 2 digits long. Maybe 3 if you’re really lucky. This means that your life is effectively worthless. The blink of an eye last 300 to 400 milliseconds. That’s roughly a 1/3 of a second. If the universe were an eye, you don’t even live for 1/10 of its blink.

Don’t worry about what others think of you, because they aren’t going to be alive or matter much to you in the long run. And neither are you. So you better make the most of this eye blink of an existence.


4. To build confidence, do what makes you happy

Happiness is a subjective idea. I’m not a fan of subjective life advice, so I’ll make this more concrete.

Do the thing which overlaps with your minimum income requirements for a stress-free life and brings you the greatest enjoyment.

Most people mess this one up. As a result, they lack confidence for one of two reasons: they spend their life doing something they hate or they’re broke as hell. It’s hard to be confident when you hate most of your life. It’s also hard to be confident if you’re broke with no prospects for making money.

5. Money neither provides nor deprives you of happiness

People who say that money can’t buy happiness have it wrong. People who say that it CAN also have it wrong. Money buys freedom. Financial freedom is nice, but if your mind is still enslaved then it doesn’t matter how much money you have.

Though their financial limitations are eradicated, lottery winners often fall back into debt. Their minds are still enslaved to poverty.

Prisons are full of people who chased financial freedom, but their minds were still enslaved to low-level thought.

The more freedom you have, the more confident you can be. You have shackles on your mind which keep you from taking chances. Taking chances is the only way to be happy and confident. Free your mind to be confident.


6. Vanity, superiority or arrogance can be powerful tools

If you need to channel vanity or the need to feel superior to act, then so be it. When I feared talking to girls during the day, I made myself to act by not caring what people thought.

When I realized that a lot of my friends were just as scared, I made myself act. I did this because I thought I was better than them. Whether this is true or not is irrelevant. All that matters is that I took action. The action got me results. 

The more action you take, the easier it is to fool yourself into being confident. This is because nothing makes you feel better than success. Over-thinking is the greatest barrier to success. This is the infamous analysis paralysis. The cure is simple: act first, worry later.


7. “Fake it till you make it” works to build confidence

I once read that “it’s easier to act your way into a new way of thinking than it is to think yourself into a new way of acting”. Confidence is a state of mind and nothing else.

At the end of the day, it’s a thought process which makes you act with the conviction that your desires will come to pass. If you take physical action that leads you closer to your desire–even if you don’t believe you can do it when you start–your confidence will gradually increase.

Doing it the opposite way doesn’t work. Psyching yourself up makes you nervous. This makes success less likely. Then we’re back at step 1.

Physical action is the easiest way to fake it until you make it. When you move towards your goal, you believe that it’s possible. This is “faking it till you make it”.


8. Very few things in this world are objectively true

The only thing that matters is what you believe. This is a powerful trick you can use to build confidence.

Learn to lie to yourself. A convincing lie that gets you to act is more useful than a thousand truths explaining why you’ll fail. When objective reality and your subjective perspective clash, you’ll feel resistance from the universe. The more outrageous your perspective, the harder reality will try to beat you into submission.

Believe anything you want about yourself that isn’t impossible. If it makes you feel confident that you’ll achieve your goal, it doesn’t really matter. Reality wants things to be one way, but your confidence gives you the power to make things another way.


9. Almost nothing works the right way the first time

Or the second time. And most times not on the tenth try either. Who knows how long it’ll take but as long as you’re learning from each time, you’ll get there eventually.

It takes patience to build confidence and realize that not all change is instantaneous Most people are going to give up on their dreams. They won’t sweat, suffer, and endure disappointment.

The world will destroy your confidence if you believe everything you do should have an instant effect  You will behave as a petulant child if you approach the world and your dreams in this manner.


10. Always give back to the world in whatever capacity you can

No matter where you are in life, there is something that you can do to make another person’s life better. There is some lesson that only you can impart.

Even a murderer on death row can serve as a reminder to people about the pitfalls of life to avoid. You can either be a great example or a horrible warning.

Watching people improve their lives or avoid tragedy from your advice will help you build confidence. Helping the world has a weird way of coming back to you.

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