If you want to be more confident, give up on these 10 toxic habits

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Want to be more confident?

You’re in the right place.

Confidence isn’t about being the loudest or having the most followers.

It’s about liking yourself and not being scared to show it.

But if you often feel like you’re blending into the background, it might be because of some bad habits.

The good news is that we’re here to help you find and drop those habits!

In this article, we’ll look at 10 bad habits that might be stopping you from feeling your best. So let’s get started on this journey to a more confident you!

1. Overthinking

Do you find yourself replaying conversations in your head or worrying about what might happen in the future?

This is called overthinking, and it’s a habit that can really damage your confidence.

When you overthink, you’re often imagining negative stuff that hasn’t even happened.

This can make you feel insecure and unsure of yourself. Instead of overthinking, try to focus on the present moment.

If you made a mistake, it’s okay. Learn from it and move on.

If you’re worried about something in the future, remember that it hasn’t happened yet.

You have the power to handle whatever comes your way.

2. Constantly Comparing Yourself to Others

This is a trap that’s very easy to fall into, especially in today’s social media-driven world.

You see people’s highlight reels on Instagram or Facebook and you think, “Why can’t I be like that?”

But here’s the thing – everyone’s life is different, and everyone is fighting their own battles.

What you see online is often just a filtered version of reality.

Comparing your life to someone else’s can lead to feelings of inadequacy and lower your self-esteem.

Instead, try to focus on your own progress and achievements.

Celebrate your small victories and acknowledge your growth.

3. Putting Myself Down

I have been guilty of this more than I’d like to admit. I used to have a habit of constantly criticizing myself, often for the silliest reasons.

Missed a workout?

I’d call myself lazy.

Made a minor mistake at work?

I’d convince myself that I was incompetent.

Talking negatively to myself became such a routine that I didn’t even realize I was doing it.

But then, I noticed how it was affecting my confidence.

I was always second-guessing myself and I rarely felt good about my achievements.

Once I recognized this, I made a conscious effort to change the way I talked to myself.

Now, if I miss a workout, I remind myself that it’s okay to take a break sometimes.

If I make a mistake at work, I see it as an opportunity to learn and grow rather than as proof of my incompetence.

Changing the way I talk to myself has made a huge difference in my confidence levels.

By being kinder to myself, I’ve started to believe in my abilities and feel more secure in who I am.

4. Not Setting Boundaries

Many of us struggle with saying ‘no’.

We worry about letting people down or coming off as rude.

But not setting boundaries can lead to resentment, stress, and a decrease in confidence as you constantly put other’s needs before your own.

Do you know people with the ability to say ‘no’ are more likely to experience feelings of self-confidence and self-worth?

It’s because setting boundaries helps you take control of your life and gives you a sense of empowerment.

5. Seeking Approval from Others

Many of us have spent a significant part of our lives seeking approval from others.

We want to be liked, accepted, and validated.

But here’s the thing – constantly seeking approval from others can severely dent your confidence.

When you rely on others to feel good about yourself, you’re giving them control over your self-esteem.

This can make you feel insecure and constantly worried about what others think of you.

But remember this – you are unique, and that’s your superpower.

Your worth is not determined by how many likes you get on a post or how many people approve of your decisions.

You are enough just the way you are.

READ THIS: People who apologize too much often had these same 10 childhood experiences

6. Avoiding New Experiences

I used to be someone who stuck to what I knew.

New experiences?

No, thank you.

It felt safer and more comfortable sticking to my routine. But then, I realized I was stuck in a rut and my confidence was not improving.

One day, I decided to step out of my comfort zone. I signed up for a dance class, something I always wanted to do but never had the courage to because I thought I had two left feet. It was scary at first and honestly, I was quite terrible. But as weeks passed, I started improving.

This experience taught me an invaluable lesson – it’s okay to be a beginner and it’s okay to make mistakes. Trying something new not only helped me gain a new skill but also boosted my confidence significantly.

7. Ignoring Self-Care

Neglecting your self-care will hit your confidence like a ton of bricks.

We often get so caught up in our busy lives that we forget to take care of ourselves.

We push through, thinking we’re being productive, but at what cost?

When you’re not taking care of your physical and mental health, your energy levels dip, and your self-esteem takes a hit.

You start feeling drained, irritable, and just plain down.

You can’t pour from an empty cup, and you can’t expect to feel confident when you’re running on fumes.

So, here’s a wake-up call – start prioritizing self-care.

This doesn’t mean you have to spend hours in the spa or meditating (though if that’s your thing, go for it!).

It simply means taking some time each day to do something that makes you feel good.

This could be as simple as taking a walk, reading a book, or even just getting a good night’s sleep.

Caring for yourself boosts your mood, recharges your energy, and yes – builds your confidence.

When you feel good physically and mentally, it shows in the way you carry yourself and interact with others. 

8. Dwelling on Past Failures

We all have a past filled with some mistakes and failures.

While it’s natural to reflect on these moments, constantly dwelling on them can seriously knock your confidence.

Those who view their past failures as learning experiences rather than negative events have higher self-esteem and a more positive outlook on life.

So instead of beating yourself up over past mistakes, try to see them as lessons.

They are not a reflection of your worth but simply stepping stones on your journey to growth and development.

Once you start viewing your failures as opportunities for growth, you’ll find your confidence starting to soar.

9. Staying in Unhealthy Relationships

I’ve learned this the hard way – staying in unhealthy relationships, whether they’re romantic, familial, or friendships, can take a serious toll on your confidence.

I was once in a friendship where I was constantly belittled and made to feel like I was never good enough.

I spent a lot of energy trying to please this friend and ended up losing sight of my own worth. My confidence plummeted and it took me a while to realize that this relationship was the root cause.

When I finally had the courage to distance myself from this toxic friendship, it felt like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. It wasn’t easy, but it was necessary for my mental health and self-confidence.

If you find yourself in a similar situation, remember that it’s okay to walk away from relationships that don’t serve you or make you feel good about yourself.

Surround yourself with people who lift you up, appreciate you and remind you of your worth.

This can make a world of difference to your confidence and overall happiness.

10. Not Believing in Yourself

This might be the last point on our list, but it’s definitely not the least. If you don’t believe in yourself, your confidence doesn’t stand a chance.

You might have people around you cheering you on, but if you’re constantly doubting your abilities and selling yourself short, their words can only do so much. You need to be your own cheerleader first.

Stop telling yourself that you can’t do something or that you’re not good enough. You are capable of incredible things and it’s high time you recognized that. Start acknowledging your strengths, start celebrating your achievements – no matter how small they may seem.

Believing in yourself is the first step towards building your confidence. It won’t happen overnight, but with time and practice, you will start seeing a difference.

Lost Your Sense of Purpose?

In this age of information overload and pressure to meet others’ expectations, many struggle to connect with their core purpose and values. It’s easy to lose your inner compass.

Jeanette Brown created this free values discovery PDF to help clarify your deepest motivations and beliefs. As an experienced life coach and self-improvement teacher, Jeanette guides people through major transitions by realigning them with their principles.

Her uniquely insightful values exercises will illuminate what inspires you, what you stand for, and how you aim to operate. This serves as a refreshing filter to tune out societal noise so you can make choices rooted in what matters most to you.

With your values clearly anchored, you’ll gain direction, motivation and the compass to navigate decisions from your best self – rather than fleeting emotion or outside influences.

Stop drifting without purpose. Rediscover what makes you come alive with Jeanette Brown’s values clarity guide.

 

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Justin Brown

As co-founder of Ideapod, a digital publishing platform reaching millions, and creator of The Vessel, a new platform for self-knowledge, I bring a unique perspective to the world of culture, politics and psychology. With a M.Sc. from the London School of Economics and M.A. (First Class Honours) from the Australian National University, I've dedicated my career to understanding and sharing new ideas and perspectives for a new generation.

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