3 tips to boost your confidence – TED-Ed
Translator: Jennifer CodyReviewer: Jessica RubyWhen faced with a big challengewhere potential failure seemsto lurk at every corner,maybe you’ve heard this advice before:”Be more confident. “And most likely, this is what you thinkwhen you hear it:”If only it were that simple. “But what is confidence?Take the belief that you are valuable,worthwhile, and capable,also known as self-esteem,add in the optimism that comeswhen you are certain of your abilities,and then empowered by these,act courageously to face a challenge head-on. This is confidence. It turns thoughts into action. So where does confidence even come from?There are several factors that impact confidence. One: what you’re born with,such as your genes,which will impact things like the balanceof neurochemicals in your brain. Two: how you’re treated. This includes the social pressuresof your environment. And three: the part you have control over,the choices you make,the risks you take,and how you think about and respond to challenges and setbacks. It isn’t possible to completely untanglethese three factors,but the personal choices we makecertainly play a major rolein confidence development. So, by keeping in mind a few practical tips,we do actually have the power to cultivateour own confidence. Tip 1: a quick fix. There are a few tricks that can give youan immediate confidence boostin the short term. Picture your success when you’re beginning a difficult task,something as simple as listening to musicwith deep bass;it can promote feelings of power. You can even strike a powerful poseor give yourself a pep talk. Tip two: believe in your ability to improve. If you’re looking for a long-term change,consider the way you think about your abilities and talents. Do you think they are fixed at birth,or that they can be developed,like a muscle?These beliefs matter becausethey can influence how you actwhen you’re faced with setbacks. If you have a fixed mindset,meaning that you think your talentsare locked in place,you might give up,assuming you’ve discovered something you’re not very good at. But if you have a growth mindsetand think your abilities can improve,a challenge is an opportunityto learn and grow. Neuroscience supports the growth mindset. The connections in your brain do getstronger and grow with study and practice. It also turns out, on average,people who have a growth mindsetare more successful,getting better grades,and doing better in the face of challenges. Tip three: practice failure. Face it, you’re going to fail sometimes. Everyone does. J. K. Rowling was rejected bytwelve different publishersbefore one picked up “Harry Potter. “The Wright Brothers built on history’sfailed attempts at flight,including some of their own,before designing a successful airplane. Studies show that those who fail regularlyand keep trying anywayare better equipped to respond to challenges and setbacksin a constructive way. They learn how to try different strategies,ask others for advice,and perservere. So, think of a challenge you want to take on,realize it’s not going to be easy,accept that you’ll make mistakes,and be kind to yourself when you do. Give yourself a pep talk, stand up, and go for it. The excitement you’ll feel knowing thatwhatever the result,you’ll have gained greater knowledgeand understanding. This is confidence.