The first step in feeling confident at work is knowing that you’re doing everything possible to succeed. Here are five ways you can feel more confident today and improve your performance.
Take Care Of Yourself.
We often forget how important this step is. When we’re stressed out at work, our self-care routines are usually the first thing to go. Instead of pushing through and sacrificing your health and wellbeing, try the following steps and reassess how you feel.
1. Get enough sleep. This may seem obvious, but studies have shown that sleep loss impacts attention and working memory as well as decision making. If you’re not getting enough sleep, you’re “more likely to make errors and omissions, partially due to increased reaction times.” Bottom line, if you’re not getting enough sleep, you won’t perform well at work. Make sure you’re getting the National Sleep Foundation’s recommended 7-9 hours per night.
2. Eat healthy food. A balanced diet will help keep you energized throughout the day. It’s also important to eat regularly so you stay focused and alert. When we’re stressed, we often crave highly processed comfort foods or snacks which are high in calories, but low in nutrients. Since stress puts a strain on our body, make sure you eat unprocessed, nutritious, balanced meals.
3. Exercise. Regular exercise helps you maintain a healthy weight and reduces stress. It also improves your mood and energy levels by increasing your endorphins and improving your mood.
4. Manage your emotions. Negative emotions like anger and anxiety can cause you to act impulsively and negatively affect your ability to focus. Try meditation or take a mindful walk when you notice yourself getting activated.
5. Take breaks. Taking regular breaks will help you recharge and refocus. Try to put breaks on your calendar or set an alarm on your phone to go off every hour as a reminder to get up and move your body.
Learn Something New Every Day.
Make sure you learn something new every day. No matter where you’re at in your career, it can be a big confidence boost to master a new skill. This will help you develop skills and knowledge that will benefit you in the future. It doesn’t need to be something big, you can start small by reading one article in your field per day. You can create a Feedly board to track specific topics or news outlets that will make this habit easy to try.
Be Kind To Yourself.
It’s easy to become overwhelmed by work and life. If you’re feeling stressed out, take some time to practice self-compassion. Dr. Kristin Neff is an associate professor of educational psychology at the University of Texas at Austin and has devoted her career to researching the impacts of self-compassion. According to Neff in an interview for Forbes:
“The number one block to self-compassion is when business leaders think self-compassion will undermine employee motivation,” Neff says. “They don’t realize that the fierce side of self-compassion is a more effective motivator than self-criticism. The more we can accept ourselves, the more able we are to change and take risks and the less anxious we are about failure.”
Want to try a quick self-compassion break? Try one of the following:
1. Get outside. Spending time outdoors helps us relax and de-stress.
2. Practice gratitude. Gratitude is one of the keys to happiness.
3. Find meaning. Finding purpose in what you do makes everything else easier.
4. Don’t compare yourself to others. There’s no need to compete with other people.
5. Remember that everyone has challenges. Everyone struggles at times.
Want to learn more about self-compassion? Neff has some fantastic exercises on her website here.
Start A Conversation with Someone You Haven’t Seen In Years.
Sometimes it’s hard for us to gain perspective on our careers or how far we’ve come. Try reaching out to someone you haven’t seen in a long time to catch up and share your recent challenges. Chances are, if this is someone you’ve worked with in the past, they’ll be able to mirror back to you how far you’ve come and how much progress you’ve made since you last saw one another.
Ask For Help When You Need It.
Sometimes, despite all of our best efforts, we continue to feel unconfident over a longer period of time. This might be because we’ve recently changed jobs or have gone through a major life change. If that’s the case for you, it might be a good time to ask for help from a professional coach or mentor. Working with a coach can help you to pinpoint exactly why you’re feeling a lack of confidence and what steps you can take to restore it.
Interested to take the first step? Click the link below to sign up for a free, 30-minute consultation:
Summer is a coach, writer, speaker and the founder of Created with Confidence. When she’s not working with clients or spending time outdoors, her favorite thing is helping ambitious humans succeed in following their dreams.
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