Building Your Confidence Can Help Your Anxiety
If you build confidence, you can reduce your anxiety. This is because anxiety is often characterized by feelings of fear and worry. When you experience chronic anxiety, these feelings of fear and worry may persist, and it can be challenging to overcome. Chronic anxiety can continuously affect the person experiencing it, and the individual may find that they periodically experience panic attacks and other physical symptoms of anxiety.
Although confidence is not necessarily directly the opposite of fear, it can be hard to feel fearful and confident at the same time. This is something I have struggled with, and so I've gone through ups and downs with my confidence. But I have also found that the more confident I feel, the less I experience anxiety symptoms.
The Relationship Between Confidence and Anxiety
Everybody, at some point in their lives, has felt as though they don't measure up to others. We have all experienced feelings of inadequacy, incompetence, and discomfort. But when you experience chronic anxiety, perhaps these feelings are more common to you than not. And unfortunately, these feelings may impede your actions.
For example, if you deal with social anxiety - something I can relate to - perhaps these feelings keep you from interacting with others on a daily basis. When you are continuously anxious, you might find that you don't feel confident about dealing with certain situations, and the more fear you feel that constantly creeps into your thoughts. The more fear you have about something, you might find that you have more of a tendency to withdraw and avoid the very thing you are afraid of. So it becomes a cycle.
How to Build Your Confidence to Help Your Anxiety
I've become aware of this tendency of mine to avoid situations because of fears that I have and feelings of worry and inadequacy. In becoming aware of how my anxiety impacts different areas of my life, I have found that it is important that I work to build my confidence. When I feel confident, I find that I don't experience the same symptoms of worry and fear that I often do. Here are strategies to help build confidence to overcome anxiety:
- Take action. I used to have a strong fear of public speaking. But when it became necessary to speak in front of others on a daily basis in my professional life, I knew I had to do something to address the constant anxiety I felt. I started to just throw myself into the situation without overthinking it. What I started to find was that the anxiety actually existed in anticipation of the event, rather than during it. So I found that simply doing was important to help overcome the fear. But the key aspect of this is in making sure to take action. Be mindful of this, and know that sometimes, you just have to jump feet first into the water, and not think too much about it first.
- Praise yourself. Positive self-talk is always an important strategy for overcoming anxiety, depression, and difficult situations overall. But praising yourself goes further than positive self-talk. First of all, it's important to practice self-compassion. Be kind and give yourself grace. Know that you are not alone in how you feel. Once you have given yourself mercy for feeling the way that you do, build yourself up. Think about what you would say to someone else who constantly feels a lack of confidence. Sing your praises and know that it is absolutely okay to do so.
- Practice self-care. Because anxiety involves arousal of physical symptoms such as a rapid heart rate and shortness of breath, it is important to practice calming techniques. These calming techniques might be things like meditation, exercise, or walking your dog. What I've found is that the more I practice self-care, the more I can build my confidence because my body is not in a constant physical state of worry and anxiety. For example, exercise does double-duty for me -- it helps to calm me, and it helps me to feel more self-assured. Take steps to stay in a peaceful, happier state of mind to help increase your confidence.
Try these strategies to help you feel more confident and help decrease the anxiety that you feel. Share in the comments below strategies to increase your confidence that you use that are helpful for you.
Bermio-Gonzalez, R. (2021, May 11). Building Your Confidence Can Help Your Anxiety, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2022, August 12 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/treatinganxiety/anxiety-management-treating-anxiety/2021/5/building-your-confidence-can-help-your-anxiety