imconfident

I sincerely believe that it is far more beneficial and far less costly to help a child build confidence than it is to fix an adult who has little or none.

How to have a good day

Almost every day can be a good day if you put your mind to it.  You can get up every morning and walk through the day without really thinking about anything OR you can get up every morning and live purposefully by actually thinking about what is going on and taking positive action.

What is on your mind when you first wake up in the morning?  Worries, doubts, fears?  Why not replace this with anticipation, purpose?  Pursue happy thoughts before you even get up in the morning.  Say positive statements or affirmations that will help put you in a positive mindset.  Don’t let all those negative thoughts put you in a bad frame of mind or you will most certainly have a bad day.

  • “This is going to be a good day!”
  • “I am going to sing all the way to work today!”
  • “I am full of energy!”
  • “I can make a difference in someone’s life today!”
  • “I have an awesome family and friends!”

Never put yourself or anyone else down with negative thoughts or words.  They will come naturally as we are wired to be negative-minded.  But don’t let those negative thoughts float around in your head.  Be aware and catch them quickly before they become negative words and actions.

You CAN have a good day.  Make sure you put your mind to it first thing in the morning!

 

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Attitude is everything

What kind of attitude do you have?

  • Do you face the day thinking about what is wrong in your life, the people you don’t like and the things you don’t want to do?
  • Are you stressed out about work or school?
  • Are you carrying a heavy load of anger, fear, bitterness or resentment?
  • Do you live with self-pity and feelings of insecurity?

OR…….

  • Do you face the day with anticipation and hope?
  • Do you look forward to meeting people at work and school?
  • Are you driven by love and the desire to help other people?
  • Are you confident and feel secure about yourself?

We all have a choice as to whether we have a good or bad attitude.  We all face difficulties in our lives but we have the power to make our own choice.  People and situations will hurt us in some way but we don’t have to allow these things to control our lives.  We can face every day with a negative perspective, hating the world and ourselves but we can also face every day with a positive perspective, loving ourselves and showing love to the world.   It’s not what happens in our lives that makes us the person we are, it is how we respond to these things.

Many people believe that they can’t change who they are and they will stay stuck in their bad attitudes, blaming others and the world for their problems and never attempting to make any positive changes.  This negative perspective is often the result of growing up in a negative environment surrounded by people with bad attitudes and it can last a lifetime unless changes are made.

Having a positive attitude is everything.  If you can’t see life with a positive perspective, you will struggle every day and never feel good about yourself or have any hope for the good future.  Here are some ways to help change your attitude:

  1. Say positive affirmations – Start your morning with positive affirmations.  As soon as you wake up, say some positive statements out loud if possible.  Don’t allow time for any negative thoughts to creep into your head.  Tell yourself you are going to have a great day and say it with meaning, even if you don’t really believe it.  The more you repeat these statements, the more you will believe them and they will become habit.  Repeat them several times during the day so you will reprogram your brain to think positive thoughts instead of negative thoughts.
  2. Use positive self-talk – We tend to think negative thoughts which often come out as negative words and actions so we have to try to be consciously aware of what we are thinking.  When we have negative thoughts, we need to stop ourselves and replace them with positive thoughts.  Always talk to yourself in a positive way.
  3. Surround yourself with positive people, places and things –  The things you surround yourself with will greatly determine your attitude.  If you are surrounded by positivity, it will lift you up and make you feel good.  If you are surrounded by negativity, it will tear you down and make you feel bad.   Make friends with people who are kind, encouraging and caring.  Go to places that give you a feeling of peace and contentment.  Look at things that make you happy.  Join an organization, a church group or start an activity.  This doesn’t mean you should never be around anyone that is negative because the world is full of negativity and you can’t avoid it.  Just try to minimize the negative and maximize the positive.
  4. Read motivational books and watch programs that will inspire you – The things you watch and see have a huge impact on your attitude.  Make sure you are looking at things that will reinforce positivity.
  5. Keep active – Doing active things are great builders of a positive attitude.  When you stay fit and healthy, you feel better and enjoy life more.
  6. Volunteer – This is a great way to become more positive.  Helping others has many benefits.  It not only makes the person you are helping feel good, it helps you feel good and it can also have a positive impact on anyone else who may notice your kind act.
  7. Smile – Just a simple action like smiling or greeting other people can have a positive effect on your attitude.  Be enthusiastic and show others that you enjoy life!

Don’t live with a negative attitude.  Being positive is the only way to live.  It isn’t easy and you have to constantly work hard to maintain a positive attitude but you CAN change your attitude.  I know because I’ve done a complete flip and it is well worth the time and effort.  Live and love life!

 

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How do you start your day?

Are you a morning person or do you have to drag yourself out of bed in the morning?  Mornings are tough for many of us because we just don’t want to face the responsibilities of the day ahead.   Negative thoughts are already floating around in our heads and it makes us feel tired, sick and often stressed-out before we even start our day.

What do you think about when you wake up in the morning?  Are you worrying about something, stressing about all the things you don’t want to do, thinking about how awful the day is going to be?

Before your feet even hit the floor, your negative thinking has already ruined your day and left you feeling tired and miserable.

Try saying some positive affirmations first things in the morning.  When you wake up, greet the day with a rousing, “Hello world.  What an awesome day this is going to be!”  Even if you don’t feel well or it is raining outside, try to bring some sunshine into your life with positive words.

Morning is the best time to set your mood for the rest of the day and if you start by saying something positive, it will give you a much better chance of having a good day.  As the day goes on, keep focusing on positive thoughts and it will start to make an impact on your mood.  Fill up your brain with positive power and you will feel more energetic.  A positive attitude will soon develop and this will become a good habit.

Think of some positive statements that you can practice.  Here are some suggestions:

  • This is going to be a great day
  • I enjoy my job
  • I have good friends
  • I am a generous person
  • I am a great mother/daughter/parent
  • I am not perfect but I am trying to be the best imperfect person I can be

It takes 3 -4 weeks to develop a new habit, so practice your affirmations daily over and over again until you begin to feel positive.

If we try to see something positive in everything we do, life won’t necessarily become easier but it becomes more valuable. ~Author Unknown

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Do you lie to yourself?

confident man in suit3Let’s face it.  We are all liars.  Some people are worse than others, but during our lifetime, everyone has told at least a few lies or twisted the truth.   If we develop strong moral values, lying will become difficult and we will always try hard to be open and honest.

Did you know that many people lie to themselves every day?  We tell ourselves lies about who we are, the way we look, what we can do and how good we are.  Have you ever told yourself these lies:

  • I’m not good enough
  • I’m worthless
  • I don’t measure up
  • I can’t do anything right
  • Nobody likes me

Where did you hear these lies?  Many of us grew up in environments where we were continuously put down, criticized and belittled by other family members,  friends or teachers.  Some of us were bullied.  Some got into abusive relationships.  Others got too involved in the media, watching TV and reading materials that pointed out our flaws and imperfections.

No matter how it happened, we heard these lies, believed them and kept repeating them to ourselves over and over again.  Our minds developed a habit of negative thinking and we got stuck in a pattern of living those lies and hurting ourselves repeatedly.

It’s time to stop lying to ourselves.   We have to start taking control of our negative thinking and start telling ourselves the truth.   What people told us years ago may not even be true and it certainly does not define who we are today.  Any past mistakes are gone and done with and we need to focus on who we are today.

Take some time and write down the lies that you believe about yourself.   Are they really true?  Probably not at all.   Now replace these lies with a truth about yourself and develop a habit of positive thinking.  This may be difficult at first, but keep trying it until you totally forget about those horrible lies.

Here are some suggestions:

  • LIE – I am worthless.  REPLACE WITH THE TRUTH – I am valuable.
  • LIE – I am stupid.  REPLACE WITH THE TRUTH – I am creative.
  • LIE – Nobody likes me.  REPLACE WITH THE TRUTH  – I have good friends.
  • LIE – I can’t do anything right.  REPLACE WITH THE TRUTH – I always try my best

If you want to learn more about positive thinking and building esteem, visit my website at http://www.imconfident.com.

 

 

 

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Feeling depressed?

people-ThinkingDepression is a terrible illness that affects literally millions of people every day, causing major problems with their health, their relationships and their work productivity.   People with depression struggle with many different symptoms including: feelings of worthlessness, low esteem, negative emotions, lack of energy and loneliness.

If you suffer from depression, it is important that you seek help.  Why?  Because you CAN learn how to control your depression and live a purposeful life.   All it takes is a deep desire to make some positive changes in your life and make a commitment to taking action.

When you feel depressed, the natural thing to do is isolate yourself and focus on your problems, but this is the worst thing you can do.    Here are some things you can do to help yourself:

  1. ASK FOR HELP  You have to try very hard to reach out to someone you can trust and talk to them.  If your family isn’t very supportive or understanding, make an appointment with your family doctor who can discuss different options (medications and/or therapy).
  2. LEARN ABOUT YOUR ILLNESS  Another thing that is very important is to do research and learn as much as you can about depression.   Not understanding what is wrong with you can result in unnecessary stress and fear of the unknown.  Knowledge helps you deal with your situation more effectively.
  3. BE ACTIVE  Depression tries to keep you in bed and feeling bad about yourself.  Fight the desire to do nothing and be active.  Get out of bed and do something.  Go for a walk.  Do some exercise.  Dance to some music.
  4. EAT HEALTHY  Eating healthy foods will make you feel better.   Don’t miss meals or eat junk food.  Try cooking something different.
  5. FOCUS ON THE POSITIVES   Depression has a negative perspective.  Do whatever you can to think positively.  Start your day by saying some positive affirmations and keep doing this through the day.  Read motivational books, listen to happy music, watch funny movies.  Stop your negative thinking.   Don’t allow negative thoughts to ruin your day.
  6. SURROUND YOURSELF WITH POSITIVITY   Try not to be around negative people who complain, criticize and make you feel bad.  Join an interest group in an organization or church and make some friends who encourage and support you.

Depression can be controlled if you work hard every day to make positive changes.   The key is taking action.  Your life will never change if you don’t do something about it.  Other people can try to help and support you, but you have to do most of the work yourself.   Stop making excuses, stop blaming others, start taking responsibility for your own life and TAKE ACTION NOW!

Do you have a family member or friend who is depressed?   They need your love and support.  Try to learn as much as you can about depression and how you can help.  Depression is a very misunderstood illness and if you don’t know how to help, you can make the situation worse.   People who are depressed can become stuck in the habit of being depressed and feel like they will never get better.   The truth is, with the proper support, they can gain control over their illness.  It is extremely important that a depressed person knows that someone cares about them and that their life does have value.

Building confidence and increasing esteem is critical to controlling depression.  When you don’t feel good about yourself and have low esteem, you are likely to feel depressed.  In my personal recovery, I did lots of research and read some very good books on building esteem.  From the information gathered, I created a self-esteem workbook that I use in my workshops and confidence coaching.  It has 84 pages of information to help you build esteem and lots of activities to reinforce what you have learned.  Click on the following links for ordering:book thumbnail

Download a PDF file http://blur.by/185uHdh

Download an Ebook for the Ipad at http://store.blurb.ca/ebooks/380698-caterpillar-to-butterfly

Order your hard copy http://www.lulu.com/content/paperback-book/caterpillar-to-butterfly-self-esteem-workbook/13722743

 

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Our emotional addictions

4 hurt arguingWhen we hear the word ‘addiction’, most people instantly think about alcohol, drugs or tobacco.  However we can also be addicted to many other things including our emotions.

An emotion is a chemical response to something, a strong feeling that usually causes a physical effect such as excitement, fear or anger.  Every day we feel numerous emotions that may result in something positive happening or something negative happening.  Emotions are a natural and necessary part of life.   They are neither right or wrong, they just happen.  We can’t stop or control our emotions but we can control how we react to our emotions.

Positive emotions evoke feelings of happiness, excitement or peace.  Negative emotions evoke feelings of resentment, fear or anger.   However when we do not deal with our emotions properly, they can become out of control.  Emotions can become addictions that will start to control us.

So many people today are addicted to anger, fear, resentment, depression and other negative emotions.  This causes problems in our relationships, at work, at school and everywhere we go.

Ask yourself:

  • What emotions do I feel most strongly?
  • How do other people feel when I react badly from any negative emotions?
  • How do I feel when I react badly from any negative emotions?
  • Am I addicted to anger, fear, etc?
  • Are my emotions under control?
  • Do my emotions control me?

It is important that we try to overcome any negative emotional addictions so they don’t destroy us.  If you want to overcome a negative emotional addiction, you need to make a commitment to change.

  • take an honest evaluation of your emotions – which ones are hurting you and which ones are helping you
  • get others to support you – find people who are encouraging and understanding
  • find information from various sources on how to break bad habits – research, read books, talk to professionals
  • focus on the positives – say daily positive affirmations, use positive self-talk
  • when you have a negative emotion – stop and think before you react
  • write your thoughts and emotions in a daily journal – take a few minutes at the end of each day to reflect on them
  • create some positive emotional addictions (love, generosity, compassion)

Let’s not forget that the little emotions are the great captains of our lives and we obey them without realizing it.  ~Vincent Van Gogh, 1889

 

 

 

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Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day

dog and pancakesHow do you celebrate Valentine’s Day?  Is it a special day for you or is it just another day?

Every year on February 14th, many people give cards, candy, flowers or some special gift to show a loved one how much they care.   Spouses or friends may arrange to have a special meal or a night out to celebrate this event.  Images of hearts and red flowers are seen in stores, restaurants and other public places.  Some people even choose to get married on Valentine’s Day.

It is great to see people engaging in loving activities but it seems such a shame that it only lasts for a day or so.  Many people have to be reminded to show love to the people around them and once Valentine’s Day is over, the love gets put on the back burner until next year.  Love should be a habit that we live every day.  We should make our loved ones feel special every day, not just one day a year.

Everyone has a love language – something that makes them feel special and important.  We often give love to others using our own love language and this doesn’t work very well.   We may feel loved when someone gives us a gift, but they may feel loved when we do something nice for them.  So if we give them a gift, they may not feel the love we want to share with them.  We need to find out what their love language is and try to show love to them every day.  By showing continuous love, it will make your relationships stronger,  it will make your marriage better and you will be happier!  Here are the 5 different love languages (as found in the book by Gary Chapman, The 5 Love Languages):

  • words of affirmation – encouragement, supporting and caring words
  • acts of service – doing something nice, a helping hand
  • receiving gifts – choosing something they like
  • quality time – spending time
  • physical touch – hug, kiss, gentle touch, high-five, handshake

You can visit the following website to discover what your love language is….www.5lovelanguages.com

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Are you good enough?

teen leaning on handIt is hard to be confident and keep our esteem strong in a world that constantly tells us we aren’t good enough and tries to convince us that we need more money, more power and more possessions to be happy and successful.  We are driven to become the ‘perfect’ person but this only causes us to fail again and again.  The result is often stress, anxiety and/or depression.

Pursuing perfection is a lose-lose situation in a world that is far from perfect.  No matter how hard we try or how much money we spend, we will never achieve perfection.

So how can you become confident and build esteem when you feel like you have failed?  What do you do when you feel unworthy?  What if you feel like giving up?

When you come to the end of your rope or the bottom of your pit, you need to stop what you are doing and make some positive changes to your life.  It doesn’t matter how people have treated you or how many mistakes you have made up to this point.  Your past does not define who you are.  You have to focus on the present and work hard at building confidence and increasing your self-esteem.young sad man

We often have distorted ideas about who we are, so we have to rid ourselves of any negative thinking.  Becoming aware of who we are is the first step to making positive changes in our lives.

  • do an honest self-evaluation
  • make a list of your positive qualities
  • say positive statements or affirmations daily
  • find your hidden strengths and skills then build on them
  • accept your weaknesses
  • learn from your failures
  • discover the truth about real beauty and stop believing what the media says
  • work on creating a new self-image

Change is not easy but success is possible if you have an open mind and heart, commit to actively working on change and you don’t give up.

YOU ARE GOOD ENOUGH!  Don’t let anyone convince you that you aren’t.   Listen to your own positive words and keep encouraging yourself.  Remember, your past does not define you.  Start creating a new you today!

 

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Really positive affirmations

POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONSPositive statements or affirmations have been proven to work effectively for many people.  Numerous articles and books have been written about the power of positive thinking and positive affirmations.

However some people think that positive affirmations are a bunch of nonsense and they don’t really work.  I can agree with that train of thought because when I first starting saying them, I didn’t really think they would work either.  I soon discovered that if I just kept repeating my positive statements and didn’t really think about what I was saying, they meant nothing.  ‘Rote learning’ or memorizing positive statements will not do anything to help you unless you are totally aware of what you are thinking and saying.

I know it is very possible to change your way of thinking because I have done this.  Even if you have spent most of your life thinking negatively as I did, your thoughts can become positive with time and patience.  Doctors tell us that we can rewire the patterns in our brains by controlling our thoughts and this is clearly shown in research where many people have been successful in changing their thought patterns.

In order to make positive changes to your thinking, it is necessary to be:

  • actively be aware of your thoughts
  • actively focus on positive thinking
  • actively stop any negative thoughts and replace them with positive thoughts
  • actively reinforce positive thinking with positive affirmations
  • actively avoid using words like can’t, won’t, don’t, replace them with can, will and do
  • actively practice your affirmations daily, several times a day

Did I mention the word ‘actively’?  Change only comes when you are actively working hard at it.  Saying positive affirmations without believing what you are saying, will not produce positive results.  Saying positive affirmations without feeling the power behind the words, will not produce positive results.  Living your words is the key to success.  You have to feel what you are saying.  Words without substance are empty.  Fill your thoughts and words with power!   Start saying some REALLY positive affirmations.

 

 

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Are you an 8 cow wife?

How do you rate yourself as a wife on a scale of 1 (terrible) to 10 (terrific)?  If we have good esteem and feel confident in our abilities, we would probably rate ourselves around a 9 or 10.  If we have low esteem and don’t have much confidence in ourselves, we would probably rate ourselves around a 1 or 2.

Many people tend to rate themselves according to what others think of them instead of looking at their natural abilities, talents and skills.  We see ourselves through the eyes of the world, judging ourselves from a wrong perspective and not really seeing our own unique identity.  If others place a high value on us, we will feel worthy.  If others place a low value on us, we will feel unworthy.8 cows

Cow Wife by Patricia McGerr.  It appeared in the Reader’s Digest in February 1988 and has been circulating since them.   The narrator tells a story about a man called Johnny Lingo who went looking for a wife and ended up paying an exorbitant price for her.   In the island where Johnny found his wife, a marriage arrangement was settled in the payment of cows.  Two or three cows would buy a good wife with average abilities, four or five cows would buy a great wife with amazing qualities and just one cow would buy a wife that was plain and not very good at anything.  However, Johnny paid EIGHT cows for his wife and then took her away to his island.  Was she a real beauty or had special qualities?  No, she was shy, full of fears and insecurities and looked sickly.  So why did Johnny pay so much for his wife?  Johnny knew that the size of the dowry put a value on the women.   The wives who were bought with 4, 5 or even 6 cows would boast about themselves and make the ones who were bought for less to feel bad.  He loved his future wife and wanted her to feel good about herself so he placed a high value on her.   The narrator was curious about Johnny and went to the island where he lived with his new wife.   When he got there, he was surprised to see a beautiful woman.   He asked Johnny why the islanders laughed about him and said his wife was homely.  Johnny replied that she was exactly as they described because she was living down to their expectations, however now that Johnny paid such a high price for her, she was living up to his expectations.  He wanted an 8 cow wife and that is exactly what he got.

When people place a high value on us, we will try to live up to that value.  But when people place a low value on us, we will accept it and live down to that value.  It is really important that we place a high value on our loved ones and keep re-affirming that value, so they will have good confidence and strong self-esteem.

  • Are you an 8 cow wife?
  • Do others place high value on you?
  • Do you place high value on yourself?
  • Do you place high value on others?

Here is the complete story of the 8 cow wife:  http://www.ultimatehusband.com/8cow_wife.html

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