Is a lack of confidence holding you back? Hypnotherapist Chloe Brotheridge reveals five simple ways to let go of limiting beliefs and regain your self esteem
If you’ve ever felt that what’s holding you back is your own mind, you’re not alone - confidence issues can plague women at any age and it’s why hypnotherapist, coach and author Chloe Brotheridge has penned her second book, Brave New Girl: 7 Steps to Confidence. Taking the stance that anyone can have confidence - it just needs to be built up - Chloe walks those of us with self esteem issues through the inner workings of the mind and unpicks all those learned beliefs that are preventing us from not only reaching our full potential but living a happier life day to day.
With a combination of her own experience and scientific studies to back it up, the book covers everything from people-pleasing to imposter syndrome, with practical tasks to help you retrain your mind and gradually put self-doubt to bed. Looking for somewhere to start? Here’s Chloe’s guide to boosting your confidence in five simple steps…
1. Look at how you're speaking to yourself
I always ask my clients to notice how they are speaking to themselves during the course of a day and write it down. It can be shocking to read back; we would never say the horrible things we say to ourselves to someone else. The next step is to put everything you say to yourself through the friend filter; ask yourself 'would I say that to a friend?' If the answer is no, focus on speaking to yourself more kindly.
2. Examine your beliefs
Limiting beliefs are often at the root of our confidence issues. What do you believe about yourself that is holding you back? It might be 'I'm not smart enough' or 'I'm an imposter and don't deserve to have my job'. Once you've recognised the beliefs, start to find evidence to contradict them. Notice the evidence that you are indeed smart enough and all the reasons that you do deserve the job you have. Doing this helps you to transform your thinking and create new, positive beliefs.
3. See yourself through the eyes of someone else
Think of someone that loves, appreciates and accepts you, just as you are. What do they see in you? What do they love about you? How do they feel about you? Imagine you can step into their shoes and see yourself from their perspective. Doing this helps you to remember all the good things about you that it's so easy to forget.
4. Imagine what could go right
Athletes and public speakers utilise this visualisation technique to ensure they feel calm and confident before their events. Instead of imagining what could go wrong, start to picture future events going as you want them to go. For example, say you have a presentation coming up at work; play a movie in your mind of yourself feeling grounded and relaxed, speaking calmly and clearly, making eye contact with your audience and getting good feedback afterwards. Doing this creates a positive expectation and leads you to feel more confident about your abilities.
5. Challenge yourself
Anxiety and fear make us want to run away and avoid things we're afraid of. But to truly overcome our fears and grow our confidence, we have to challenge ourselves and do something that scares you a bit. I'm inviting people to get involved in the #BraveNew Girl challenge by taking one tiny step outside of your comfort zone. It could be putting your hand up to ask a question in a meeting, asking your online friend on Instagram if they want to meet IRL, or hitting 'publish' on your first blog post. Fear shrinks when you walk towards it and when you survive a challenge you learn to trust yourself and this grows your confidence.