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Some people are naturally self confident, for others it can feel like a day to day struggle. The good news is that self confidence can be improved with some practice.

Do you ever feel apprehensive when you need to meet new people? Do new experiences and environments conjure up feelings of fear and dread more than excitement and joy? If this is the case then taking some time to work on your self confidence can add great benefits to your life. The following are some practical tips that you can apply today to help bolster your self confidence.

1. Dress well

When you look good you feel good. When you take the time to put yourself together not only are you practicing some awesome self love but you are giving your self confidence a natural boost. Dressing well can give you a bit of an edge and can help you walk with a purpose and hold your head up high. Think about this, you don't often see someone dressed well walking around with a poor me look on their face, they often look self confident and poised. The extra bonus is, people will receive you more positively just for looking your best. Don't believe me? Here is a test you can do. The next time you need to return something at a store dress well. You will often notice the people that dress well get helped that much faster than those that are dressed average. When you walk out the door dressed well take a look in the mirror, smile at yourself and feel your self confidence shift.

2. Smile

This part can take a bit of practice and doesn't always feel comfortable to everyone but with practice smiling can become way more natural to you. Her is the key, sincerity counts, so when you smile, take a moment to look at someone and do it with purpose. Don't just walk into a room and smile at everyone like you are throwing confetti, it may freak people out a bit. All kidding aside, when you smile with ease and intention it carries with it a perception of self confidence. Even if you haven't gotten where you want to be with your self confidence just remember, "fake it til you make it."  Here is a practical tip to help you practice. Each day when you walk down the street smile at people. Yes, you will have people look at you like, man, is this person weird. However, those people will actually be rare. Most people will smile back at you. Many people will look surprised at first wondering if you are indeed smiling at them but when the initial shock of a stranger smiling at them passes you will be greeted with a warm smile. We all want to feel accepted and happy, smiling is a bridge we can create with another person without saying a word. The give and receive practice of smiling will help you boost your self confidence and feel great. The more I practice this the more I am amazed just how effective it is.

"Low self-confidence isn't a life sentence. Self-confidence can be learned, practiced, and mastered--just like any other skill. Once you master it, everything in your life will change for the better." Barrie Davenport


3.  Have a support group

Having a few select family and friends that you can count on can do wonders for your self confidence. Choose people that you can count on to provide you with support and insight when you are feeling challenged. Trust people that know your strengths and believe in you. When you have found these people, offer support and encouragement in return. You can enhance your self confidence by having a support group and being a part of another person's support group. It is in our human nature to help.


4. Challenge yourself

Go have a new experience that is out of your comfort zone. This exercise is not about what you do, it is simply about the doing. When we move outside of our comfort zone to a place of the unknown we often come back feeling proud of ourselves for just being brave enough to do it. Don't know where to begin? Check out Yahoo Meetups for activities in your area. Many are free and I am sure you can find at least 20 things you have never done before. Most of them are free and activities with a variety of schedules so you have no excuse. Get out there, challenge yourself and feel your self confidence grow.


5. Share what you know

We all have things we are good at; special places where we really shine. I bet there is someone you know that can benefit from your unique skill set, assistance or point of view. Don't be afraid to extend yourself because someone will be really grateful when you do. We don't need to seek out a charity, (though that is a great idea too) because there are opportunities to share out gifts all around us. We only need to open our eyes and listen. When we share our talents it boosts our self confidence and gives light back to the world.

Please leave a comment below and share any tips you may have too.

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