This post was written by Mareike from Outoftheglassbox.com.
Mareike helps simultaneously stressed and bored corporate millennials to find a more fulfilling career. I was lucky enough to stumble across Mareike’s work several months ago and have been hooked ever since. She does great work helping millennials find their purpose and live their dreams. I’m delighted to introduce her guest post below, and you can also check out her blog for more great advice and inspiration!
How to find the confidence
to make a major change in your life in your twenties
Are you in your twenties and thinking about making a major change in your life but keep putting it off?
I know what it’s like to go back and forth between the wish for change and a whole range of reasons that are holding you back. Often times, the biggest thing that is holding us back from change, especially when we are young, is a lack of confidence. Too many twenty-somethings go through that wonderful time of their lives, with the most potential for change and development, constantly talking themselves out of things they would love to go for. On the one hand, you would love to make that change in your life, while on the other hand, you keep telling yourself limiting beliefs like “I’m too inexperienced”, “I’m too young”, “I’m not good enough”, and the list goes on.
In the beginning of my twenties, I used to be one of those people with little self-confidence who didn’t think I was capable of anything much. I was also quite aware of how my low self-confidence kept me stuck in certain ways. Over the years I’ve adapted a few principles that over time helped me to change in ways that I didn’t think were possible. Quitting my corporate job, becoming a coach and starting my own blog being the very recent developments I would never have thought achievable for myself. You can read more about this here.
I feel that confidence is like a muscle and if you are not born with a whole lot of it, you need to constantly practice it. Here are some suggestions to help you do just that.
Know and celebrate your past successes, even if they seem small
I think that this really is the starting point to find the confidence for a major change in your life. If you have a track record of successes in your head, as tiny as your wins may be, it’ll be SO much easier to know that you’re capable of greater things!!
I, therefore, suggest putting together a list with things you’ve accomplished in the past. Start small. It can be anything as small as talking fluently on the phone or solving a basic math task (speaking of my past insecurities…). Maybe you’ve even landed the internship or job you didn’t think you would? Or you’ve held a tiny speech, rocked a meeting or helped someone through a tough time?
If your instant response is “see, I haven’t even achieved something as small as this!”, you have to keep on brain searching. Ask yourself, and even say it out loud: “What teeny tiny thing have I accomplished lately that I didn’t think I was capable of?” By constantly asking yourself this question, achievements will pop into your head, for sure!
So, whatever came up, appreciate it as your win and write it down to get going with step two.
Get some positive self-talk going to create the change in your life that you desire
Based on the list you prepared previously, you can now start to remind yourself that you are indeed capable of accomplishment!
For doing this, I’m a big fan of affirmations – little sentences you tell yourself while looking in the mirror. Sounds weird? I thought so at first but they made a whole lot of difference in my life.
Here is a little “affirmations how to”:
- Realize the negative things you tell yourself day in and day out that keep you stuck. Again, things like, I’m too young, too stupid… write them down!
- For each negative thought, find evidence that it is not true and a reason why. E.g.: I’m smart because I figured out a certain issue (refer to the list created above or look for even more wins)… write these down!
- Phrase your wins into sentences that really speak to you and address your insecurities. Write them down!
- Put the sentences on a piece of paper and put them on a mirror in your home
- Read these sentences out loud every morning! It will change your life.
Challenge your comfort zone and realize that it doesn’t hurt.
Once you have some confidence accumulated, you’ll want to expand even further. I’ll suggest doing very small things that you previously thought were super scary or even impossible.
Make that scary phone call, go to an event all by yourself, take a short trip by yourself, speak up in the meeting, whatever it is that you’d like to do but feel a little uncomfortable doing. As I said, confidence is like a muscle and if you want to go for a major change in your life, you want to train it.
By doing these things, you’ll grow so much that anything will become easier and less scary over time.
Look for like minded people and know that you are not alone
Whatever major change in your life you are looking to make, it’s so much easier to follow through with it if you are surrounded by like-minded people! May that be in your real life or virtually, like minded people can propel you forward, even just by wanting and believing in the same things. Therefore I urge you to seek out people with similar goals at local events or online. These days there are a ton of meetups and groups online for the most diverse topics, where you can find support and new ideas for your goals and interests.
Another favorite and honestly one of the most supportive things I have done in the past years is to join a Mastermind Group. Masterminds are a Group of usually 4-6 people that are trying to accomplish a similar goal. You’ll meet anywhere from once a week to once a month to discuss where you are at and what you currently need help with. As all of you are working toward the same goal, this can be incredibly helpful.
Know this, your twenties are an awesome time to make a major change in your life and start building your confidence muscle. You have plenty of different paths you can choose from and don’t have many obligations to hold you back yet.
You’ll go through a lot of changes during your life and it’s very powerful to have the confidence to consciously drive these changes and lead yourself in the direction you desire. Starting early with building confidence and going for your goals can really pay off and help you create a life on your own terms. So go for it!
Thank you so much Mareike! I would love to hear from all of the South Of Thirty Readers what their list of accomplishments include, and what they plan to do to get out of their comfort zones.
For more information Mareike, her amazing story and the work she does visit Outoftheglassbox.com