The definition of self-confidence is born out of the feeling of trust of self.
That trust is in one’s abilities, judgment, and personal qualities. There are elements of self-assurance, self-reliance, and confidence involved.
It seems obvious right away in looking at that definition that people in active addiction or in early recovery are going to have some issues with self-confidence.
In living a life of active addiction people lose trust in themselves. Their word comes to mean nothing. Dishonesty, manipulation, and deceit become necessary tools in order to get high and stay high.
Ironically, and in a twisted way, people in active addiction have developed extremely strong pieces of self-confidence – just directed in the wrong way. They have extremely strong self-reliance and survival abilities – but this is driven by the need to obtain and use drugs every day. They will go to any lengths to get it. This life generates feelings of anger, shame and guilt.
We can help improve self-confidence – read on…
The Importance Of Self Confidence
Life is more enjoyable when you feel confident. If we look at self-confidence as a component of motivation and commitment to stay sober it is critical. A person should feel self-confident of their ability to get clean and live sober life.
It’s also easier to be successful. A lack of confidence can get in the way of your career, relationships, and social life. Low self-confidence can trip you up when you least expect it.
Luckily, your sense of self-confidence is under your control. If you avoid managing it, it will be lower than you deserve. Your level of self-confidence might seem random, but you can choose to direct it as you see fit.
A person who is simply trying has open themselves up and escape hatch for failure. They can always say well at least I tried. A person who is truly convicted will state that they WILL get sober and turbocharge that conviction ‘I will do this NO MATTER WHAT’. That’s the winning ticket.
Here Are Some Tips On How To Gain More Self Confidence
The answer to the question of ‘how do I get self-confidence’? is to learn and practice a certain set of social and life skills. It sounds simple but it’s not particularly easy. Try taking a look at self-confidence as an ability that everybody has. Some people are simply more developed. You can increase the development of your self-confidence by practicing new skills similar to those used in learning to control your emotions. To get better at anything constant sustained practice is needed.
We have put together the following self-confidence tips:
- Today’s the first day of the rest of your life. You’ve had a few things go wrong in the past, or maybe your whole life is gone wrong but that has nothing to do with today. Your future is created today, let go of the past.. There’s no reason to weigh yourself down with anything that’s happened in the past.
- Do something positive physically. Go for a run or swim, use that gym membership that you keep paying for. Even a vigorous walk can boost your self-confidence. Break a sweat and you’ll boost your confidence.
- Interact with people socially. A lack of social skills is a common cause of low self-confidence. Interacting with others is an important activity. The best way for people in recovery to interact is to go to 12 step meetings. There are many books and websites created to give you tips to overcome social anxiety should you have.
- Surround yourself with positive people.The people around you affect your mood and outlook on life. Your confidence is affected, too. Create a social group that supports you and maintains a positive attitude.
- Breakthrough a fear. Stop letting fear rule your life. Make a promise to yourself that you willovercome a fear. (I suggest you start small.) There is a personal mantra I use from a book called Dune by Frank Herbert. I may not get the code exactly right but here it is I haven’t committed to memory in use all the time. “I will turn in the face my fear. I will allow it to pass over me and through me. When it is gone I shall remain. But stronger”
- Keep a record of your past successes. This is somewhat similar to creating a gratitude list, but in this case you give yourself a little pat on the back. You’ve had at least a few. You’ve probably forgotten more than you remember! Take just a minute or two to remember these great successes. You’ll feel more powerful after just 60 seconds. Better yet, make a list and carry it with you. Start with your childhood and move forward in time to the present day. When you’re feeling down, pull out your list and bask in your successes.
- Do something you know you do well. After a hard day, nothing can boost your confidence like spending some time at an activity you excel at. Make a list of the things you do well and spend some time each day doing one of them. Build this time into your schedule.
- Focus outward, not inward. Get out of your head. A lack of confidence is a sign that you’re spending too much time thinking about yourself. Put the focus on others and the current activity. It’s hard to lack confidence if you’re not even thinking about yourself. If you’re alone, spend time doing something that engrosses your attention. You’ll quickly feel better.
A word of caution: self confidence can be a two edge sword and cut 2 ways. In the context of overcoming shyness, social anxiety and as a motivation for action it is great. But, on the other hand, if a person gets cocky and thinks ‘I’ve got this’ They could be on the slippery road to drug or alcohol relapse.
Developing The Skill of Self Confidence | Dr. Ivan Joseph
We hope you enjoyed this post on tips how to gain more self-confidence. Utilizing and practicing these tips for the development of self-confidence will certainly enhance the quality of your sober life.
Take some time each day to enhance your self-confidence. Just a few minutes of effort can change the way you feel about yourself. Why not added to your morning or evening meditation?
Everything, including living sober. is easier and more enjoyable when you’re confident in your abilities. Avoid allowing the world to dictate your level of self-confidence. Take control of this important trait.
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Some Really Good Free Resources
- Drugs, Brains and Behavior: The Science of Addiction (Drugabuse.gov) – In my opinion this is the best short read on addiction. I have used the content for many therapy groups and lectures…check it out.
- Understanding Drug Use and Addiction Many people don’t understand why or how other people become addicted to drugs. This explains it nicely.