We all know a remarkable woman who simply exudes confidence and we would be forgiven for wondering what’s her secret?! The great news is that we all have the ability to be confident – and courage is the key to helping us get there
When it comes to confidence, it’s easy to make the assumption that it’s something we are born with, or without; we either have it, or we don’t. We might look at a truly confident woman and feel as though her level of self-assurance and certainty is unobtainable. But in actual fact, confidence isn’t always innate – more often than not it’s a quality that is grown and nurtured over a long time – and that means it's achievable to anyone who decides to put their mind to it!
What we might not realise is that each of these amazingly confident women we know are not just confident, they are courageous too. It is their courage that distinguishes them and enables them to be confident. They will have self-doubts, off days and things they’d like to change about themselves, just like we all do. The difference is that these women don’t let negative thoughts hold them back – and this is where their courage comes in.
Wondering where to start? To help you tap into your inner brave and start living confidently, we’ve identified eight habits of women who use their courage to cultivate their confidence.
The 8 habits of women who cultivate confidence through courage:
1. Keep calm and carry on – confidently!
From time to time, we all experience days when nothing goes to plan and we seem to hit nothing but setbacks – even those super confident women who appear to breeze through everything! The difference is how they would choose to deal with these not-so-nice parts of life. Rather than beating themselves up or throwing in the towel, they make conscious efforts to practice self-love and kindness, which in turn fosters the courage needed to dust themselves off and try again, heads held high!
2. Break free from self-limiting mindsets
Nothing boosts confidence like discovering a new talent we didn't know we had, or realising we are capable of far more than we thought. Push your own personal boundaries and break free from self-limiting thoughts, which do nothing but hold you back and reinforce a negative mindset. Confident women know that a great way to promote confidence is by having the courage to step outside their comfort zones on a regular basis. Be brave and say yes – join that club, try that class, go to that event - you might just surprise yourself.
3. Know when to say ‘no’
Confident women understand that sometimes it’s okay to say ‘no’ – in fact sometimes it’s essential. This can be hard to do, especially when we know it’s not going to be well received. However, saying ‘yes’ when it’s not in our best interests lowers our self-worth and our confidence plummets with it. Have courage to say ‘no’ when necessary and watch your confidence soar!
4. Confidence is more than skin deep, but a power outfit can be a game changer – if we have the courage to wear it!
We all have that one item of clothing, or a particular outfit that makes us feel unstoppable. While confident women know that confidence comes from within, they also understand that wearing something you feel fantastic in can be a real courage booster. Dare to give yourself an edge with your power outfit and feel your confidence grow! In our second workshop in March, 'Dress for Success' we will be looking at building confidence through what we wear.
5. Make a plan and have the courage to take action
Taking time to consider what you want to achieve and setting some goals is a great way to get clear about your direction in life. However, confident women know that this is only half the battle. The next step is to actually begin putting these plans into action and taking practical steps towards reaching your goals – and this is where a little courage is required. Be brave and make a start, even small steps are better than none. Once you start to see results, your confidence won’t be far behind.
6. Confidence is a work in progress
Confident women are always looking at ways they can use their courage to step into new experiences and continually grow their confidence. By attending workshops or courses they further their own personal development and gain advice and tools to allow themselves to feel the fear, but do it anyway. Join us for our first workshop this month, 'How to Cultivate Confidence' where we will be discussing confidence with SheThrives - a business helping mothers return to work.
7. Nurture confidence and courage through mindfulness
Confident women appreciate the value in giving themselves a pat on the back and understand the importance of keeping track of their achievements and aims.
By acknowledging even the little successes, you will nurture your confidence and by having a clear understanding of your next move, you can build the courage to tackle it. Mindfulness practices such as meditation or journaling are great ways to do this.
8. Keep your social circle healthy
If you look at the people around a confident woman, you will notice a common theme. You won’t see negative or discouraging influences, only positive ones. By surrounding yourself only with people who have a positive impact upon you and by distancing yourself from those who bring you down, your confidence will be significantly boosted. Finding your true supporters – those who will help push you in the right direction by encouraging you to be courageous – is a sure-fire way to elevate your confidence levels.
Confidence is a choice made every day and is within the reach of each of us; we just need to harness our courage to help see it flourish!
By Gemma Coldwell - Contributing editor
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