- Increased flexibility.
- Increased muscle strength and tone.
- Improved respiration, energy and vitality.
- Maintaining a balanced metabolism.
- Weight reduction.
- Cardio and circulatory health.
- Improved athletic performance.
- Protection from injury.
Once upon a time there was a small child known as you.
This child was born into the world pure and perfect, aware only of its own needs. If those needs were met, if someone held you, fed you, kept you safe and warm, your world was perfect.
Even as you got a bit older, if your parents were loving and kind, you still had a strong sense of yourself as you explored the world and discovered the wonders of living.
But around the time of kindergarten, things started to change. You encountered other children whose words stung, who were faster, stronger, smarter, prettier. You had to perform in school, to win the teacher’s approval, to follow the rules. You saw where you didn’t measure up, where you weren’t quite good enough.
You learned quickly that approval and love can be tied to ability, performance, appearance, personality, and conformance. Even your parents, as much as they loved you, subtly reinforced these new rules with their hopes and expectations for you.
As you entered adolescence, all of your own insecurities were reflected in the cruel words and hurtful behaviors of your peers and the images portrayed in the media.
But hopefully, along the way, you had enough successes, enough love, enough encouragement for your self-confidence to have a foothold. However, if your home life was dysfunctional, critical, or abusive in some way, the self-confidence that was budding as a toddler was never able to fully bloom, especially not during the difficult teenage years.
Once you reached adulthood, left home, and began your own life, you had a choice, whether you were conscious of it or not. You had the choice to stay tethered to the dysfunction, pain, disappointments, and fears of your youth, or to take control of your life and create it anew.
- Maybe you weren’t aware you had this choice.
- Maybe you didn’t have the skills to know how to take control.
- Maybe your pain was too deep to have the energy to find a way.
- Maybe you were too committed to the “stories” about you being lazy, unmotivated, the pleaser, shy, unattractive, incapable, not good enough.
- Maybe you became too dependent on others to tell you who you are and what you are supposed to be.
Well, now you are a full-fledged adult, and whether your are 25 or 55, I’d like to assure you that you do have a choice.
You can learn the skills.
You can overcome the pain.
You don’t have to accept the “stories.”
You can define your life on your own terms.
You can have self-confidence.
It all starts with the belief that with practice, change and growth are not only possible, they are inevitable.
It starts with a willingness to view yourself and the world differently.
Your identity is not locked to the past, to your parent’s expectations or demands, to your past failures, to your current view of yourself. Your identity is something thatyou can create every single day. Once you realize that, your self-confidence will begin to ignite.
I know that everyone has different levels of self-confidence problems. Some of you might have really debilitating wounds that need to heal. Some may have personality types that are more introverted or shy. Some may lack self-confidence in just one area of life where others have no self-confidence at all.
But regardless of where you are related to self-confidence, there are some actions you can take today, right now, that will put you in the driver’s seat of your life and begin to improve your self-confidence.
Here are 20 that you can try:
1. Challenge your thoughts. Identify the negative beliefs you have about yourself and challenge them. Find evidence to the contrary.
2. Retrain your brain. Negative thinking becomes a habit ingrained in your brain. Rewire your brain by intentionally thinking new and positive thoughts, even if it feels awkward at first. You will create new wiring and new habits.
3. Smile. Arranging your facial muscles in a smile actually makes you feel happier and more confident. It triggers those feelings in your brain.
4. Stand up straight. Pay attention to your posture. It makes you appear more self-confident and therefore you feel more self-confident.
5. Practice. If you lack self-confidence in a skill, practice it. With improvement comes confidence.
6. Make a list. Write down your skills, abilities, successes, and gifts. In moments of low self-confidence, you forget all of the great things about you. Write them down so you can remember.
7. Interact. Isolating yourself allows you to get lost in negative thinking. Spend time withe other people. Make yourself, even if you don’t feel like it.
8. Create boundaries. Low self-confidence often goes hand-in-hand with people-pleasing. How are you allowing someone to control your decisions or behavior? What is one thing you could do to create a boundary here and reclaim yourself?
9. Write a vision. Write down exactly how you would like your life to look if you were creating it from scratch. When you put it in writing, you have begun the process of creating it.
10. Look your best. Take care of your appearance. Dress nicely. Get your hair styled. Put on make-up. When you look your best, you feel more self-confident.
11. Challenge a fear. Where are you holding yourself back? Where are you afraid of failure? Take one teeny tiny action in that area. Then another.
12. Hug your failures. Take a good look at past failures. Write down what you learned from them and how they served you. See how failure has been kind to you.
13. Define your values. Write down your most important life values. How are you living contrary to those values? What is one action you could take to correct that?
14. Find a mentor. Who is someone inspiring and motivating to you? Learn more about them, how they conduct their lives, and how they got where they are.
15. Focus on now. Most self-confidence problems stem from worry about the future or regret about the past. Focus on the task at hand. Immerse yourself in it so your mind is happily engaged.
16. Do something for others. When you are kind and giving by choice, you will find immense satisfaction and confidence in sharing and serving others.
17. Plan a pity party. If you need to dwell on your problems or failures, just allow yourself a 10 minute pity party a day.
18. Try something new. Anything. A hobby, a sport, a recipe. Just do something that you haven’t done before.
19. Read something inspirational. Keep a motivational book with you to give yourself a booster shot of self-confidence. One of my favorites is Fearless: Creating the Courage to Change the Things You Can by success coach Steve Chandler.
20. Call in reinforcements. Take a course to improve your self-confidence. And if you have issues from the past that you can’t resolve, seek the support of a counselor so that you can move forward.
Self-confidence can be learned with practice. Take small actions every day to improve your confidence and retrain your brain to learn positive new ways of thinking and believing. Challenge yourself to stretch beyond your comfort zone of confidence to prove to yourself what you are truly capable of achieving. With every incremental step forward, your confidence will grow exponentially.
8 Tips on how to be beautiful without makeup
Many of us can’t even imagine our life without makeup. Today’s topic might sound strange and even scary for many girls, thanks to media popularization of unrealistic beauty standards. To be beautiful without makeup?! Is it even possible?!
It became our daily ritual to wake up early and put on our “beautiful” makeup mask.
For many of us it would be a big nonsense even to go to a supermarket with no makeup on.
Media often forces us to believe that a woman with no makeup on can’t actually look somewhat attractive or beautiful.
In this article, we don’t suggest that you completely let go and forget about taking care of yourself; on the contrary, if you want to live a makeup-free life, or at least to be able to have makeup-free days, then it makes sense to put a little bit more effort into caring about the natural beauty of your face, hair and body.
1) Feel beautiful (even without makeup)
Yes, first step to natural, makeup-free beauty is connected with your inner perception of yourself – your self image. How do you feel about yourself inside? It all depends on you. Try to feel beautiful. Yes. Right now, in this very moment…Know that you are pretty!
If a girl considers herself beautiful and is able to accept herself totally and unconditionally, then the the whole world will feel the same about her. Yes, it’s that simple!
But if you don’t feel comfortable and confident about yourself with no makeup on, try to adapt the new ‘natural’ image gradually. For example, while on vacation, give your face a “vacation” as well, by using a minimal amount of cosmetics; use only mascara and a touch of lipgloss.
2) Your skin is your everything!
If you decide to lead a makeup-free life, it doesn’t mean that you need to completely let go of all skin care products.
Nobody abolished daily cleansing and moisturizing; these are necessary ingredients to the beauty and health of our skin.
If you used to deal with pimples by covering them up with tones of makeup – now, your main concern is the health and beauty of your skin.
Many skin problems are actually related to the excessive use of makeup; skin tone becomes uneven because of the reaction of your body on a foundation, concealer or blush. If you stop using foundation (at least for a while), after some time, you’ll notice that your skin tone will improve and there will be no need of that thick makeup mask any more. If skin problems persist, get a professional advice of a dermatologist; it’s better to treat the problem straight away, than to put it on hold into a waiting box.
Some other tips for the beauty of your skin include: use facial masks 2 or 3 times a week (choose masks according to your skin type), and exfoliate your skin regularly (we are not only talking about exfoliating your facial skin, exfoliate your whole body.)
Here is one of our favorite skin care tips: splash your face with cold water in the morning and in the evening for about 10 seconds. This helps to tone your skin naturally and will also help close pores.
3) Your beautiful natural eyebrows
Usually, when we apply makeup, we often try to change the proportions of our face and adapt it to world’s beauty standards, so that sometimes, we even forget how pretty and unique we look naturally.
If you want to minimize your daily makeup routine, then try to emphasize your natural features. Let’s start with your beautiful eyebrows. Look in the mirror and notice natural shape of your eyebrows, if you over-plucked them, then try to grow them back (apply natural oils on your eyebrows every evening; use castor oil, olive oil, coconut oil or burdock root oil) and then, shape your brows once and for all with the help of a professional, or with the help of youtube. 🙂
If your eyebrows are too light and you usually draw them with a pencil, try a semi-permanent brow coloration in a salon instead. This will look more natural, so that your makeup-free face with well defined and beautiful eyebrows will instantly look more attractive.
Here is another tip on how to make your natural eyebrows grow: apply a mixture of castor oil and sweet almond oil on our brows every evening before going to sleep; do it for one or two months and see wonderful results!
4) Be transparent
When we are talking about beauty without makeup, it doesn’t mean that we should completely ignore all the beauty industry and forget about all cosmetic products. There are some great products on the market that can help you emphasize your natural beauty, such as eyebrow gels and transparent mascaras for your eyelashes, chap sticks, lip balms and lip glosses with no or a little bit of color; these nourish your lips and make you look fresh, natural and beautiful.
5) Healthy eating and water
Good food is important not only for the beauty of our skin, but also for the overall health of our body.
We are what we eat, therefore healthy and balanced diet should be our faithful, lifelong friend.
Make sure you eat fresh fruits and vegetables every day, as well as healthy fats and proteins; these are so important for our beauty.
And, of course, our best friend is water! Try to drink about 8 glasses of water a day and also treat yourself with a green or white tea from time to time, because these are rich in antioxidants and will help your skin look fresh and young for a very long time, even without makeup.
6) Kissable Lips
Here is a very simple tip on how to make your lips kissable and soft: gently massage your lips every evening (or every other evening) with your toothbrush for a couple of minutes (or use a ‘sugar+honey’ scab instead); then rinse and apply Shea butter (your natural moisturizer) on your lips. Now, feel how tender, soft and kissable your lips feel; your prince charming won’t be able to stop kissing you! 🙂
7) Smile and love yourself
Smile will instantly help you to feel and look pretty, even if you don’t have any makeup on!
As Audrey Hepburn once said: “The prettiest girl is the happiest one!” Smile every time you look in the mirror, smile to people you see on the street and, in general, let smile be your favorite accessory – you will see how the whole world will start smiling back at you!
Love yourself. Accept yourself fully and completely. Love the way you look with or without makeup, because you are truly unique and beautiful! Remember it!
8) What about your hair?
If you want to look pretty with no makeup on – it’s important to take a good care of your hair and keep your hair color close to natural.
If you use certain “extreme” hair colors, such as blue, pink or green, it can emphasise all little imperfections on your face and draw attention to them.
Try to keep your hair in great condition by using right hair care products that are suitable for your hair type, and do hair masks and oil treatments regularly. Nothing can be more beautiful than silky and shiny locks!
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