Hi! I want to take a moment with you today and present you with a challenge. This challenge is easy to fit into your life and can be repeated every day. Since I have taken up this challenge I have noticed that:
I am more confident
I am happier
I can connect with people more easily
I am more rational under pressure
Listen I know you’ve seen things like this on the internet before, you’ve read all about “living in the moment” but come on, that’s way easier said than done, right? This challenge isn’t like that. Instead of ambiguous advice, my tried and true challenge is filled with 6 very specific ways that you can boost your confidence daily. Ready to give it a shot?
This first step is so fun and customizable. Introvert, extrovert, it doesn’t matter who you are, this is an easy step that anyone can complete. Think of a time when a fun idea has popped into your head, but before you have the chance to act on it a little voice inside stops you. Maybe the fear of “looking stupid” holds you back or perhaps you hear self-doubt telling you “it wouldn’t work anyway.” Whatever your hang up may be, today I challenge you to push past it. Unlocking your inner creativity means taking that extra step and initiating the follow through on your idea.
Not sure what I mean? Here’s an example for you. When I’m out shopping, searching for something that I just have to have, I will often dismiss a store from the outside. Looking across the mall or shopping center, I will convince myself that store is a waste of time and not even worth walking towards. It may not seem like much, but left unchecked this apathetic attitude carries over into other aspects of life as well. Lately, I have been taking that forward step into the unknown and in turn, I have been rewarded with some really unexpected treasures.
Another great example is committing to something you think sounds fun or interesting but would normally shrug off…something like completing this challenge!
Make sure to share the love too with a quick pin!
Do a good deed
I don’t need to explain this one to you. This old adage is as tried as it is true, and for good reason too. Doing something nice for someone else releases the happy chemicals oxytocin and serotonin in you brain — think: the ones that makes you feel all warm and fuzzy on the inside. The internet loves telling people about the stranger that paid for their morning coffee; choose today to pay it forward and be that generous stranger. If that sounds like a nice thought but you can’t *imagine* yourself doing that just yet, no worries, just start small. Pick up something a stranger dropped or compliment a coworker. This doesn’t have to be a monumental shift, brightening someone’s day is a task everyone can accomplish.
Connect with someone
Picking up the phone and calling an old friend sounds so archaic doesn’t it? In today’s world, it’s all about social media. Are you the shy extrovert type who sees people having fun on Facebook? Do you waver over the “Like” button, unsure if you want to put yourself out there like that? It isn’t scary! Start there and move into commenting and eventually messaging. The days of high school are over and by now the cliquey groups of the past are scattered all over the world. Don’t be afraid to reach out to someone you’re thinking of. Maybe they’re thinking of you too and are standing still in the exact same position you are. Don’t let their online persona intimidate you, and remember that everyone puts their best face forward on social media.
Smile at a stranger
This is my favorite challenge! Throughout your day I want you to go on a mission to find the sourest, grouchiest looking person out there and once you do, I want you to flash them the biggest, most genuine smile you’ve got.
You’ll be surprised; it’s really fun trying to make someone smile back at you. The grumpier they are, the harder you have to try!
You’ll know you’ve made it once you have bested the grouch, but I don’t want you to stop there. Smile at a second person, and another, and then another — before you know it, you will be smiling at everybody you see!
Pause, and breathe
Just breathe — this is one you hear this one all the time. If you’re anything like me, whenever you hear it you’re probably like, “ya, that’s what I do all day everyday…” Or maybe you get what the yogic breathing is all about but still you just take a really forced big inhale in and a forceful exhale out while you let your monkey-mind chatter away inside your brain.
What I challenge you to do instead is pause. Give your busy mind something to focus on as you consciously fill your lungs with air. Take note — how does your chest feel as it expands? Once you are full of air, pause for a count and feel full of life. Then, exhale slowly and deliberately. Focus on the sensation of air leaving your mouth or nose. Practices like these are actually the basics of meditation and even just a few purposeful breaths can quickly calm the mind and allow it to catch up.
What is something you did well today? Maybe you finished these challenges? Or perhaps you learned something new? Take a moment and give yourself an ‘atta boy. Negativity is everywhere in the world and the last place you need to let it in is your own head!