Positive thinking, overcoming insecurities, growth mindset

Personal growth enables us to become a better version of ourselves. It takes a lifetime to perfect it. However, personal development doesn’t need to be complicated!  

Let’s imagine that we are playing a tic-tac-toe game and give you two tools to build on and one factor that may block you and how you can overcome it. 

This article helps you to grasp the gist of how to make improvements to your life in a few simple steps. By implementing them into your daily routine, you can make instantaneous changes to your life, and little efforts soon will mount into something pretty amazing.  

To achieve quick positive changes putting these tiny efforts to good use, you need to know which lever to pull. Our article gives you a handle on the areas you need to focus on to make a real difference. 

 

Positive Thinking 

The number #1 element of personal development we mention in this article is positive thinking. Having a bright outlook on life is essential to moving forward in the right direction. When we apply positive thinking to a situation, our aim is to notice and focus on the good things. Now, I am not suggesting that you are looking at the world through rose-tinted glasses! However, the only person you can change is yourself and your attitude. Positive thinking can help you move on with what you can take away from a situation rather than be stuck on contemplating the negatives.  

This attitude to what’s happening around you will help you find solutions to the problems sooner or learn how to let them go faster. One thing you can do today to make a difference to your tomorrow is a quick Focus exercise.  

  

10-minute exercise to promote positive thinking in your everyday life 

  1. Choose a problem that you have been struggling to solve for a while 
  1. List three reasons why you need to solve this problem. What happens when you solve the problem? What will you achieve by solving the problem? Focus on the impact and positive outcomes. 
  1. Write down three skills/experiences that will make you successful in overcoming this problem. 
  1. List the top fear that is holding you back in solving the problem.  
    Find an example of a solution to the same or similar situation in your past, or learn from someone you trust and can learn from. 
  1. Envisage the best, a good and an acceptable outcome, and set a realistic way to measure your success, concentrating on what you can influence. 

 

Find a link to a simple template we give away for free.  

https://unleashr-mentoring.com/download/12234/ Use it as many times as you need it. 

 

Next time, when you come across a problem, go back to this exercise to focus on the positives and overcome the problem with the right attitude. 

Do not forget to be grateful for the opportunity to grow through solving the problem! 

Applying positive thinking to your days doesn’t mean devoiding your life of all reality. Of course, we need to be standing on the ground with two feet. The difference is that we are looking up rather than staring at the ground. Personal development has to have a good pinch of positivity. 

 

 

Do you want to know the difference between being overly enthusiastic and positive?  

Positive thinking is rooted in reality; you have a firm connection with it. Whereas if your thought has gone off the grid, then it’s not reality anymore but something that you have imagined or created in your mind. Naturally, not all imagination will take away your sense of reality. Creativity is an essential part of life and can result in amazing things such as pieces of art or technological invention. Staying grounded though helps you achieve results instead of longing for something unattainable.  

Let me illustrate the difference between positive thinking and being detached from reality with an example. 

 

A business entering the market with a new product may plan on achieving a $100K turnover in half a year, which can be a realistic expectation if he knows how to get started and increase sales fast. The better strategy and operational foundations the business has, the sooner they can put the product onto the market. With a robust strategy and business plan, they will be able to achieve results fast.  

 

However, if someone is planning on getting wealthy from hitting the jackpot on the lottery or partaking in “get-rich-easy”   schemes, they may find that the journey to the stars is a bit further than they hoped.  

 

How to do positive thinking correctly?  

Well, your thinking must be plugged into reality. Your mind has to be focused on the results and the outcomes. Additionally, you need to take into account what the chances are of these outcomes becoming a reality.  

Here is another example, 

 

We’ve all deliberated the pros and cons of a situation before making a decision. Going to a café versus going to a restaurant for lunch – well, the coffee is excellent at the café, and they have delicious cakes, but I am starving, and I can have a chilled sit-down meal at a restaurant!  

Tough call? Well, here is when the probability factor comes in: the café may not have enough sitting space for me to enjoy a short and quiet break… The chance of a favorable scenario coming true is slimmer, i.e., to be able to sit down to eat my meal. Therefore, all in all, the best call, in this case, must be to eat out at a restaurant. The fear of the café not having seating contributed to my choice falling on the restaurant.  

The issue with the fear factor is that we may fail to consider what could be done to promote the positive outcome to come to light. In our example, if we were really after cakes from a café, we could have gone to a place that has more of these eateries around to increase our chances of having a chilled coffee with a cake. 

In reality, you may not make an optimal decision because of the multiple factors that influence decision-making pairing up with the time pressure. In other words, not trusting an optimistic scenario, you compromise on a plan B. 

 

Overcoming insecurities 

The #2 component of personal development, which we cover in this article, is overcoming insecurities. These insecurities are, mostly subconsciously, holding us back from reaching our full potential. These self-doubting thoughts can come at us unexpectedly. It may be related to performance or being accepted, or it could be arising from questioning our own abilities.  

All these little worries are stemming from something that happened to us in our past. We may not have noticed them having an effect on us at the time, and we may not be able to pinpoint them onto one single event. A series of experiences can even cause insecurities 

One thing is for sure, it, consciously or more so subconsciously, caused us to change behaviors and the perceptions of events we partake in.  

We can see that to overcome insecurities as part of our personal development journey, we need to confront these skeletons in the closet. Behind every insecurity, there is a motive, a particular deep-rooted belief or desire that got bruised.  

Let me give you an example if you are feeling insecure because you don’t feel accepted, then at some point in your life, on a deeper level, your desire for being accepted by your parents, your partner, or your boss took a hit, and it left its mark on your mind. Many female professionals realize that their ambitions to move up the career ladder was deeply rooted in their early experiences of their mothers’ expectations related to perfection. 

Another example, you may have a deep-rooted motive connected to achievement, and you feel like falling short of hitting success repeatedly. This means that, at some point, you probably wanted something really badly, and you couldn’t quite get it. So, the next time your fear of not achieving it drove your actions.  

 

Here is my suggestion for getting past the doubts that may live in your mind – have a moment to yourself and think what may have happened to you that affected you? What is it that bruised you and left its mark?  
If you can identify it, or at least become conscious about this affecting your thinking, then you already took a step towards your personal development. Learning and reflection are such massive cornerstones of self-improvement and setting ourselves up on an upward journey.  

 

Just like that, we arrived at the #3 element of personal development. 

 

Growth mindset.  

Growth mindset is a state of mind based on the belief of being able to move forward and improve. It’s a belief in your own skillset and that you can develop further. Every tiny little thing that you learn propels you forward.  
You are always in motion. Just like sharks! Sharks need to keep moving to stay alive. We, humans, need to frequently change, improve, and adapt to new situations and circumstances. We need continuous improvement dynamic in our lives, just the same way sharks need to keep swimming 

 

Remember, incremental changes are all it takes to become a better version of yourself from one day to the other.  

 

To put this growth mindset into practice, list five things you learned over the past 2 days.  

Think of what you saw, where you’ve been in these past couple of days. You could have learned about a quirky trait of an animal in a documentary, saw a greener solution to an everyday item you use, learned 3 words in a foreign language… things like these are propelling you on from one day to the other, so keep them going! 

 

Apply some positive thinking in your everyday life, step over insecurities that may stop you from becoming the better version of yourself, and allowing your mind to absorb and grow with information that moves you closer to your goal. 

The Psychology Of Positive Thinking

positive thinking

If you have ever applied for a job, you couldn’t avoid spotting positive thinking or a positive mindset in the list of requirements. We all accept that having a positive outlook on life helps when it comes to facing everyday challenges, even though we might not know precisely how positive thinking works.

So, what is positive thinking all about, and how can you train your brain for it? Is a glass-half-full way of thinking hard-wired in us?

Beyond displaying a positive and upbeat attitude, positive thinking affects how we approach skills’ development and how we decide on allocating our resources to specific activities.

Researchers found that daily experiences of positive emotions, in fact, enable the build-up of useful resources and skills, while negative experiences may even paralyze the individual. It is not difficult to see that without motivation and inspiration, your personal energy level is not the same. And experiencing difficulties without encouragement or support on a long-term eats up own energy and may lead to depression.

With a positive mindset, you approach difficulties with a higher level of confidence; in other words, you trust your ability to face the challenges that come your way successfully.

Positive thinking also influences how you explain past events, and how you see the outcome of specific situations, what results you predict. Furthermore, a positive outlook on life often helps people see adverse events as atypical and temporary.

Does positive thinking equal ignoring risks or potential limitations?

Are you fooling yourself? Certainly not.

It means that despite risks and difficulties, you anticipate a positive outcome. You do that because you see those potential risks and challenges as opportunities or things you need to deal with in order to accomplish what you planned for yourself; instead of seeing them as roadblocks or showstoppers.

You may fool yourself, but the reason for that won’t be your positive mindset; instead, it would be that you are ignorant about crucial facts or potential dangers in a situation. Sometimes it may not be easy to distinguish between positive and wishful thinking.

If you follow wishful thinking, you form beliefs according to what might be pleasing to you instead of making decisions based on evidence and rational thought. Match your thinking to a perception that better reflects reality, and your positivity will be well-founded. 

You can use these 5 Ways to support your positive mindset.

Some say convincing yourself that you will ace that presentation or job interview is basically lying to yourself. It might be unless you are entirely clear about the key messages of your presentation and you, or you prepared for that interview. While positive thinking will give you a great kick start, it is not going to solve the problem.

When wishful thinking is misinterpreted as positive thinking, come the comments about positivity being overrated. People disappointed with the outcomes because they expected something better might blame positive thinking for their unpleasant experience.

What are the benefits of a positive mindset?

  • Better health leading to a longer life
  • The ability to handle stress factors driving a more balanced and happier life
  • Better decision making leading to a more prosperous life
  • Healthy relationships

It seems positive thinking has its benefits when it is understood well, and your self-awareness supports it.

Next, I assume you would like to know how you can train your brain to have more positive thoughts.

Here are a couple of tips for you.

  • When you are preparing to deal with a complicated matter, picture a positive outcome. In fact, picture several positive scenarios and think about what steps you should take to make one of the favorable situations happen.
  • When you expect that a challenge is coming your way, instead of thinking about the event itself, spend time thinking about the causes of that unpleasant event you predict and the means you have to reduce the negative impact or to eliminate it altogether.
  • Fill your day with words that make you feel that you have control over your life and strength. Focus on words that suggest competence rather than the ones that indicate failure or mistakes.
  • Redirect your thought. If you remember, we were talking about how your energy level is affected by negative thoughts. You have the opportunity to choose your thoughts. Uplift yourself by concentrating on things that make you happy. Use this to achieve the mindset that enables you to take action. Once you are in action mode, focus on finding solutions to your primary problem.
  • Use positive words during the day. You may not tackle the ‘positive talk’ game right at the beginning. With practice, you will use more and more encouraging words and feel how it affects your self-confidence.

Photo by Hudson Hintze on Unsplash

5 Tips to Help You Be More Successful

Success

Hunger for success is natural and is in everyone. There isn’t a more uplifting feeling than when you accomplish your goals through hard work and discover your true self. Everyone wants to be more successful, but what is a success?

Although success can be well–defined, based on the experience with our clients, it means something different to everyone. There are those who feel content in possession of lots of money. Those who own and run a business – which is what brings them joy. Some people are dedicated to personal and professional development and there are also those whose 1st priority is family – and others to whom it’s caritative work. 

All work for success, all in their own ways, some following their passion and others in need of a little uplifting now and then. 

But what ways are there to be more successful? Here are 5 tips for you to help you be on the path of joy and success.

Find out what success means to you.

I am sure you heard that people who follow their passion are happier and more successful. In some sense, it is true, even though passion is only one component to success. So, as a start,  find out what makes you feel happy. As soon as you have a goal, you can create the plans yourself – if you really want it. 

Then find what you like to spend time doing and what you are good at.

When you do something with all your heart and soul, you are moving huge energies and can achieve extraordinary things. This energy will automatically help you concentrate on creating experiences that move you forward and ease the progress to a great extent. Without a shadow of a doubt, you will be able to mobilize your energies and turn your ideas into actions.

We all know though, that passion paired with excellence is what makes a difference, and to make an impact you need to have and utilize the right skills.

When you are tuned into success and positive about the future, you rarely consider that success always comes at a price. Expect surprises and be open to making sacrifices.

Depending on what success means to you and what you want to achieve or what your goals are, – you must expect to make sacrifices. We often say the best things in life are free, but everything comes at a price.  If you want to spend more time with the family, you must make the time for it. If you want to progress in your career, you must invest in yourself. Do you want to start a business? You need funds, new skills, and time. Perhaps,  you need to save money for months or even years to start your business.

With all the learning, the extra efforts, and the work invested in, you might find that you have even less free time. The good news is that everything is temporary. I am sure you heard the phrase ‘This too shall pass’. Once you reap the fruits of your labor, you will see the sacrifice was worth it.

Surround yourself with people smarter than you.

There are only a few people in the world from who you couldn’t learn something good and new. On the way to success, you will come across and work with a lot of people. They all help you towards your goal in one way or another. Don’t be afraid to share, ask for help, or cooperate.

Never give up!

One of the keys to success is that we do not surrender when faced with obstacles. It is one thing, of course, to know the way how to overcome the obstacles ahead, and another to implement the solution. 

Many people become uncertain and hesitant when one small inconvenience arises and lose the strength to start over. 

Don’t be like them. Adopt a problem–solving attitude and concentrate on finding solutions, not excuses. If you do so, not only your work will be fruitful, but others will also recognize and appreciate the results. Not to mention the lessons that will enrich your life and increase your self-confidence. 

You also need to understand that you are in the driving seat and hold the key to your life. 

Even if you believe there are a magical influence, other people, fatal powers, or coincidences that prevent you from achieving your goals, you will always have a choice and a solution, you just need to find it. 

Many people don’t accomplish their goals because they are not willing to take the necessary steps, not because they are not capable enough. 

The accomplishment of your life goals may somewhat depend on luck and talent, or on your relationships, or other factors. But it definitely depends on how you handle the above-mentioned factors.

Let the challenges be the reason why you can progress and succeed, when others may hide behind those as they fail. This is how simple it is to stand out and achieve all you want.

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Self-Confidence is Fundamental to Everything, But What is the Source of Self-Confidence?

fundamentals of self-confidence

If you’re here, you have at least one question on your mind that you want the answer to. Is improving self-confidence possible, and if so, how? 

If you want to get anywhere in life, doing all the things you want to do and seeing all the things you want to see, you can’t do it while missing one of the key elements which is self-confidence. One’s experiences influence one’s perception of the self. A child that has been brought up from an early age believing they can achieve anything they will tend to grow up with a generous amount of trust in their own abilities.  

Not all of us are so fortunate. Facing failure at an early age without being able to bounce back from it can lead to poor self-esteem. Our inner critic constantly uses these little incidents to make us question our self-worth. The lack of confidence can lead a person to back out from situations, growing incredibly anxious in public events, or even making mistakes in things they already know.  

However, we have all seen numerous examples showing that one’s attitude as a child does not completely determine their path as an adult. It means, there is a way to quiet that inner critic and build up one’s self-confidence as an adult. The path may be more complex at a later age, but it is certainly possible to develop and maintain higher self-confidence.  

With the right guidance, support, tools and desire to live a happier and healthier life overallyou can build a new mindset, and with that, you can change your experiences. 

For some, it may take years of practice, but eventually, we can all reach a stage where we intrinsically believe in ourselves and where we need not consciously remind ourselves of our worth.  

Basically, that is the state where you can confidently say you have a good sense of self-worth and self-esteem. Naturally, we all have our ups and downs, and we don’t feel confident all the time. Such moments, when you start questioning your abilities are also helpful, so listen to yourself. Listen to your mind. This is where it all starts. Those moments, when you waver, indicate which situations you may have trouble with, what your triggers are and which skills you need to work on.  

Building up your self-confidence might sound difficult, especially if you have very little belief in yourself right now. But after experiencing the first quick improvements, you will have something to build on. Do not underestimate small results.  

We prepared some easy to implement tips to help you start your journey and build your confidence.  

 1. Visualization

Visualize yourself as who you want to be and how your life will look like once you have more confidence You don’t have to imagine yourself all successful, be realistic and visualize the next stage of development. With time, you will and can be bolder.  

Often, we suffer from poor self-image. By imagining yourself as a confident, capable person, you can open your mind to new ways and new thinking. New ways which you are not choosing yet because you don’t believe you can do it. Experiment and keep your risks at bay.  

Are you not confident to ask for help from an experienced colleague or be a part of that project where you could prove your abilities just yet? Visualize various scenarios, practice what a confident person would say. Collect your thoughts, relevant experiences, and examples of similar situations. This is what confident people do. They rely on their past results and experiences. They rely on their skills. You have skills; we all have skills; you are no exception. The difference is that you haven’t recognized your skills yet, or you have no reference point. Find yourself the first reference point. A problem you can solve. 

Click the link to learn 5 Ways you can use relaxation and visualisation to help advance your career

2. Affirmations

We tend to beat ourselves up for the smallest of mistakes far too often, but rarely do we remember to compliment ourselves for the things we do well. When you know you are good at something, make it a point to remind yourself of that. Say it out loud, do not be shy. It is true for you; it has already been proven. You have proved it.  

It may sound strange first to hear your own voice saying, I tackled that interview and got the job I have been dreaming about. But it will give you a sense of pride and closure too. Knowing that you have accomplished something as a result of your talent and effort.  

I recall the first time I did that. I didn’t even state my achievement. Also, I said it as if it was a question.  

This method can apply to your physical insecurities as well. The next time you look into the mirror, compliment yourself. Compliment yourself out loud, for features of your appearance you are proud of. It can be anything, and you may be proud of your shapely eyebrows, nice smile, you can even compliment yourself for your hairstyle that day. 

Similarly, do not forget to compliment yourself for your mind, resilience, and perseverance. Compliment yourself for your dreams and plans. Without them, you wouldn’t make any progress. Dreams and plans are fuel to your growth.  Appreciate your own qualities with conviction, and your self-confidence will have no choice but to follow. 

3. Challenge Yourself

Do something that makes you uncomfortable. Start small, and this is not a competition. Your development and happiness are at stake. Others have no say in it. Listen to advice and opinions but know that you live your own life, and no one else lives it on your behalf. 

I know some would question this advice. Why would I start small? Why not be bold I can tell you if you ask these questions, you probably have enough self-confidence in that field, so find another challenge for yourself. 

By facing a difficult situation head-on, your heart will finally start believing that you can do anything you set your mind to.  Also remember, facing it head-on does not mean you have to rush into it. You can still craft your plan and progress at your own pace.  

4. I mentioned this already. Start Small

Often, we set ourselves on a course for a nearly unachievable aim, and when we are unable to meet it, our confidence takes a hit. Instead, break down your larger long-term aims into goals and those into smaller, short-term objectives 

After achieving your objectives, make a list of those achievements, no matter how small you believe them to be. This will help reaffirm your faith in yourself, and eventually, you will have achieved your goal as well. 

5. Personal Boundaries

It is okay to say no to other people. By setting personal boundaries and doing things that make you happy, you will be more in control of your life. Naturally, this will improve your perception of yourself.  

Follow these five techniques, and soon, you will be the person you always wished to be.  

Related articles
What does it take to be confident?
Benefits of Believing In Yourself.

 

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10 Signs of Low Self-Confidence

image for low self-confidence post

When you experience the signs of low self-confidence, you are not fulfilling your true potential. Read on to become familiar with these signs. That is the first step to improving your self-confidence and enabling your personal growth.

We all have manifested signs of low self-confidence at various points in our lives. Have you ever wondered what self-confidence truly means? I am sure you have already heard various definitions because it can be explained in multiple ways.  

Self-confidence means trusting in your abilities and talent. You have the belief that no matter what happens, you will be able to achieve your goal or solve a problem regardless of how difficult it may seem. You know you can succeed in any situation as you have the knowledge, resources, and abilities. 

Self-confidence also means that we feel safe when we are doing our day to day tasks as we know how to execute them. However, if a new situation or problem arises, we panic or might get scared. Being able to fight this feeling and get on top of it is also defined as self-confidence.

Everyone has self-confidence. Some more, some less. Some in a particular area, while others in different fields. Self-confidence is linked to various areas of life.

What does higher self-confidence contribute to?

  • Developing the ability to establish and maintain happier relationships.
  • Earning more money.
  • Building more satisfying careers.
  • Generally, to a more successful life.

To start your journey to a more satisfying and successful life, you have to be honest with yourself and realize whether there is work to be done with your confidence level.

 

10 Signs of Low Self-Confidence

Think about the past two weeks. Do you recognize any of these in your behaviors?

  1. You are hesitant or unable to accept compliments. Instead of saying a simple ‘Thank you’ – as you very likely worked hard for that compliment and are deserving of it – you will say something like ‘Oh, it is nothing, anybody could have done it’ and downplay it.
  2. You worry about what other people think. Besides, you cannot be yourself as you always walk on eggshells and try to please everybody around you. Confident people do acknowledge what others might think about them. But they care about it on a healthy level, as they have accepted, and love themselves, as they are. They consider others’ opinions when they need it, and they constructively engage their inputs.
  3. You do not trust yourself and your judgment.
    Another sign of low self-confidence is that you continuously ask for others’ opinion and judgment as a support to ensure your decision is the right one. Also, you might struggle to make sound decisions as you think others know better than you. Although, let’s not forget that at times, we all lose trust in our judgment. Self-confidence is about reaching back to past success and capabilities.
  4. You make excuses or blame others. Instead of owning up to your mistakes, you blame others or make excuses. Accepting the fact that you have made a mistake might feel like a weakness to you.
  5. Take constructive feedback as criticism. Due to not having a clear picture of their strengths, individuals with low self-confidence will take any negative feedback personally. This behavior makes them feel demotivated and even more unsure about their abilities.
  6. You do not like being in charge.
    People with a lack of self-confidence are afraid of being in a leading position as they cannot make choices without the approval of others.
  7. Accepting or giving in to blame. You often feel that you need to accept the responsibility for whatever went wrong and that it happened because of you. If you have low self-confidence, it is just easier to give in and take the blame than to stand up for yourself. 
  8. Comparing yourself with others. Instead of concentrating on yourself and how you can succeed, you are always checking what and how other people do and achieve. Comparing ourselves to others is not a problem as long as we can see it as an opportunity, and we find a better way forward without feeling like a loser in the competition. On some level, we all compare ourselves to others.
  9. You back down in an argument just to please others. You would rather keep your opinion to yourself, even if you know you are right, just to avoid conflict and keep up the peace.
  10. Giving up too soon. You might try something new but give it up before giving it your best shot as you think ‘it will never work for me’.

If, after reading these behaviors, you may have just realized that you might be lacking self-confidence. You need to know that many different factors contribute to low self-confidence: bad experiences, cultural background, etc. You also need to know that it is not your fault, and you can build your self-confidence back up. Although your past cannot be changed, there is help out there to guide you through the process.

It is so important to understand that if you are ready to put some time and work into it, with the right help and tools, you will be able to shine and enjoy a happier, more successful life and career.

You might like the What does it take to be confident? article that we published on this topic.

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