Journal of Psychology. How to maintain self-confidence

in psychology •  last year

How to maintain self-confidence and self-esteem?

Very often one of the first requests of a client for therapy is the experience of self-doubt in situations of significant contact. I want to talk with you about this today ...

How to become self-confident, a lot of literature is written. But, despite the fact that they are trying to teach us to believe in ourselves, basically they tell us what are the signs of "reading" the Other. Of course, the ability to see and hear those from whom you need something at the moment is a good thing ... But such "generalized" conclusions - "if he looks to the left - up, clenching his fists, then he remembers that and that and that "- I would believe with caution ... And my ideas - so, just in case - I would try to check ... For example, asking the question:" What does it mean for you, when you raise your eyes to the left - up and clench your fists? "

Even in such literature we are offered "tools" for "manipulating" the environment. Well, that she always gave you what she needs ... For some reason, often, "behind the scenes" is the fact that in any interaction of the body with the environment there is only one "ALWAYS" - namely, that in any contact always there is an exchange. And if you want to get - be ready to give ... Therefore, it is "to manipulate" - to force others - to do what you want - to do others - that's why I always have big doubts ... To learn to negotiate, taking into account the interests of both parties - yes, here energy and trust a lot.

Criticizing the opinions of Others - it's always easier than trying to offer your options ... So, I criticized, but now I'm risking.

First - about the uncertainty in society. Suddenly, or often, we doubt whether we will succeed in convincing the boss that we are good for the work entrusted to us, whether we will cope with a public speech, whether we will achieve good results in the negotiations. Just want to make a reservation that to worry "before" and "in" important life situations is an absolutely normal reaction of the psyche. Healthy excitement helps us to "get together," mobilize our current resources, and become more attentive to "here and now." But if instead of living an acute excitement we "sting" in anxiety, get into a stupor, and our resources are blocked - there is something to think about ...

In my senses, we are overwhelmed with anxiety when the message focuses our expectations, anxieties and attention on the Other. And unconsciously we assign to him (her) the status of such ... "strict" appraiser. Yes, for example, when you are hiring, they really appreciate us. How much our knowledge and skills are suitable for work for which the employer expects to pay us money. But I think everyone will agree that my qualities as an employee are a small, mostly functional, part of my Personality. We come for an interview and say: "I'm an accountant. I'm a waiter. I'm a manager. "And at such a moment, on the wave of anxiety, will we find it sufficiently" qualitative "for this function, we can simply forget that while" here and now "we remain with all of our bodily, personal and human resources. On which we can rely ALWAYS, in any life situation.

So, a bodily resource. The body is what is always with us while we are alive. All mental processes begin with sensations in the body. Sensitivity to your body is different for everyone. The better I identify and feel my body - its needs, needs, appetites and desires - the easier it is for me to navigate in the environment. Search for exactly what I need at the moment.

Every moment of my life my body tries to support me and protect me. This is an axiom. There is such a "winged phrase" - the soil leaves from under the feet. Moments of fear, excitement, anxiety sometimes "translate" us into this ... "suspended" state. In this situation, a very simple thing helps - to remember that you have legs. Who are holding you, leaning on the ground. If in an alarming situation - at least 15-20 seconds - to "go to the feet" and feel their reliability, to feel how steadily and firmly you stand on the ground - the excitement will become a little less. If you sit - sit firmly on the chair, lean your hips on the seat, and back - on the back, and the stability to the situation will be a little more. The body will receive real support and this bodily sensation will stabilize your emotional background.

If the situation is very stressful - try to make a half-step "out" - and watch your breathing. Often on alarm, we just stop breathing, or breathe superficially, barely audible ... Yes, this for some time "dulls" strong emotions, but also depletes our energy resource. With a lack of air, we are unequivocally worse in thinking ... Our attention is so ... dissipated ... 3-5 normal, attentive breaths - exhalations can remind us that our body is still "with us". And that the outcome of the alarming situation is unlikely to be critical for our life activity ... And that under any "scenario" we remain with our current resources ... And now we - by and large - live one of the million possible options of life - universal - processes ...

And then I turn to another valuable resource - namely, to the memory that I am always part of humanity. I am "one of" ... And all of us - by and large - brothers and sisters ... And our worries, problems and worries are very similar ... And now, in my acute and difficult experience, I am hardly alone - at the same moment on Earth they try to do the same thing, and in the same way experience, at least a thousand more people ... Or two thousand ... Or ten thousand ... There are many of us ... We are a force ... 

From this "generalization" I propose to return to myself in search of another resource in the situation of acute anxiety and insecurity. I already wrote above that, as a rule, in each, separately taken life situation, we are present with some part of ourselves. For example, the working function: "I'm an accountant". Or gender: "I am a woman". Or parental: "I am a father". But at the same time, do we often remember that our personal INTEGRITY is always with us? That at every moment of my life I am a PERSON? Which includes all my life experience, everything I've learned, everything I know and know how? Yes, in this situation I'm training - I'm trying to get something to implement one of my sides. But I can rely on everything for myself! How? Yes, just remembering that I just know how to do well. In what I am stable. What do I get. You can even write out your sustainable qualities on a piece of paper. Well, reread from time to time ... In moments of despondency or discontent with yourself ...

Insecurity in ourselves often "drives" us into shame ... In experiencing ourselves as "different" from others. By the way, in the category of "excellent" loneliness too, too much ...  But there it is "the top of the winner." And we get pleasure from how and how much different from others ... And in shame we are in the "universal loneliness" of our imperfection. There are such "perfect" THEY - and opposite me - such ... "bad man". Less quality ...

How to support yourself in this? Maybe just remember that a person is a part of nature? And nature has "no bad weather." And can you say that flowering is good, and wilt is bad? That the autumn slush should be canceled? Nature - like man - is cyclical. Day is night, heat is cold ... And this is natural. Similarly, it is natural for us to be strong - weak and lucky - and not ... At different moments of our life ... In different situations ... I, for example, personal failures - among other things - are taught to be more tolerant and compassionate towards others. And to yourself too ... When suddenly it became desperately lonely - look out the window. Look at the chilly branch, the thick crow, try to catch the sunbeam. And - through the body - feel that you are part of this whole big world. By the way, in the situation of the exam - interviews - speeches - it can also ... soar ...

Now, literally a few words about our vulnerability and self-doubt in contact with loved ones. And how can you support yourself here.

In personal relationships, we often fear negative emotions and rejections. Because most often we immediately think that if they scold me or reject me, then I am bad.

And can each such a negative "assessment" make sense to "tie" to a specific contact situation? What did I do now? Who repels you, guilty and shames you? Why would he do it? From what context is "here and now" YOUR ACT (your words, behavior) so appreciated? Why should you translate a negative utterance into your address precisely in rejection? And why do you have to suffer so deeply and sincerely about this? Feel yourself so ... unfit and unworthy? Why do you deny yourself the right to make a mistake "here and now"? Which one can you try to fix?

And another time, instead of habitually "falling off" from contact into the experience of your inferiority, "abandonment", "universal loneliness", you may venture to ask yourself - and to the Other - these questions? I think the answers will surprise you ...

In conclusion, I want to say that in order to support myself in the belief that I, as a person, is so ... good and fully-fledged, you can simply recall the two good deeds that I did in my life (did). It can be anything you like-she transferred an old woman across the street, treated him to a neighbor's candy, saved someone's life, comforted a crying child ... I'm sure that there are a lot of good things in the life of each of us that we did just ... Just because we - people, and therefore by definition valuable for themselves, and for others, and for the universe ...

Author - Irina Lopatuhina

Psychologist, Gestalt therapist


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