by Phyllis Reagin
Even with a successful business, credentials, or experience, some women can still feel unworthy. Somehow, there is a disconnect between reality and what they deem truth. They have rewritten or lost their value. When these doubts penetrate their lives, it leaves a damaging trail. It shows up as procrastination, being unfocused, and losing momentum. The cracks in their self-worth begin widening.
1. Make a list and think twice
Too often, women are vague about their accomplishments. Either due to being uncomfortable with drawing attention to themselves or they have spent so little time reviewing them that they have forgotten their successes. It’s important to list out all your accomplishments, big and small, that have occurred throughout your life. Every one of them. Strive to list 100 successes. This exercise can be daunting, but the process is revealing. The fact that this it may be challenging, is a good sign that you don’t spend enough time reviewing your accomplishments. How can you possibly feel confident when all your achievements are no longer on your radar?
Once you have your list, reread them and add, “I” in front of them. Instead of just stating “graduated with top honors.” Say out loud, “I graduated with top honors.” You need to connect yourself again to your accomplishments. It is important for you to realize that the one consistent occurrence with your successes is ‘You.’
2. Repeat and rinse
Look at your list and now create a storyline. When you were successful, what was your mindset? What were you doing to support yourself emotionally? What kind of self-care were you practicing regularly? Self-confidence often ebbs and flows depending on how well we are taking care of ourselves. Commit to bolstering yourself with the proper amount of sleep, excellent nutrition, supportive friends, positive boosting activities, and elevating spiritual practices.
Insecurities have a hard time rooting when you feel balanced, energized, and well.
Start to become aware of what time of day you feel your best and your worst. Which friends or colleagues make you feel encouraged or negative? What food makes you more focused and positive? What environment lifts your spirit? What books or television programs leave you feeling joyous? Elevating your mood is an excellent way to counteract any negative feeling, even insecurity.
3. Rewire your brain
After years of feeling insecure, you may have wired your brain to see yourself in a negative way. You have now established a neurological pattern that requires focused work to change. An example is when someone tells you that your idea is “great and with a few changes it will be fantastic.” What you hear instead is “you are not good enough.” You then feel overwhelmed with self-doubt. It can lead to a downward spiral of sadness and a loss of energy and focus. To prevent this, spend time creating a few sentences to say to yourself before these situations occur. You can create, “I made this happen!”, or “I deserve this.”, or “It’s not perfect but I still matter.”
Now, when someone compliments you or a negative situation occurs, say one of these statements to yourself. At first, they may feel foreign and unbelievable, but the increased frequency and focus will rewire your brain. Over time, your brain will be on automatic and start thinking these positive thoughts without too much effort from you.
Insecure feelings happen to everyone but if you find that you are experiencing them often, then it’s time to reconnect to yourself, practice better ways of taking care of yourself, and perform some thought rewiring. You deserve to live your life full of confidence and self-worth.
Phyllis Reagin the Founder and Confidence Coach of At the Coach’s Table. A former leader for a Fortune 500 company, she teaches emerging and millennial female leaders how to uproot their insecurities, to assertively deal with others and situations, and to find their empowered voice. You can sign up for Phyllis’ free weekly Confidence Spark emails and receive confidence building tips.