In my last post I discussed how our confidence often takes a hit when our limbic system is impaired. It’s easy to fall into doubting ourselves and operate from a place of “I can’t” when our brain is ringing alarm bells all the time. Beyond doubt and “I can’t” not being a super fun place to be, they also don’t send a message of safety to the brain. Confidence does.
So how do we start to embody confidence to teach our brain this new pattern? There are many things we can incorporate into our practice to help achieve this. A good place to start is noticing when “I can’t” is creeping into your thoughts and speech and challenge that. Maybe you replace it with “Of course I can” or “Just watch me, brain”. That doesn’t mean that you have to act on it just yet, but start interrupting the messages that are telling you that you can’t. We often need to change our thinking patterns before we can change the behavior tied to those patterns.
From there, think about what has made you feel confident in the past or what would make you feel confident in the future. We’re all different and there’s not one set answer to this. Maybe feeling smart makes you feel confident, or feeling strong and powerful, or accomplishing something. Or maybe feeling beautiful does it for you. There’s no right or wrong answer. Start incorporating these states into your visualizations to let the brain practice this new state of confidence. It’s ok if it doesn’t resonate at first, it often doesn’t when we’re changing patterns.
We can also start to change our body language to send a message of confidence to the
brain. When we are stuck in doubt, our bodies are often slouched over, with our eyes down and maybe even a shuffle to our walk. Think about the phrase “an air of confidence”, what does that look like to you? Can you step into moving and behaving that way throughout the day? Maybe you strut like a supermodel or maybe you have a swagger like your favorite movie star. Or maybe a quiet confidence resonates more with you.
The suggestions above a just a start and certainly not an all-inclusive list of ways to rebuild your trust in yourself and your confidence. Start looking for other ways to build yourself up and reclaim your confidence because this sends a message of safety to the brain. And please share what you’re doing to build your confidence in the comment section, that way we can all benefit from each other’s wisdom and experience.