Self-confidence is something that most people struggle with. There are many situations in college that can cause you to feel a little nervous or to worry about your ability to succeed. There are academic hurdles to jump such as major projects or exams and social situations that may cause you some anxiety.
Traditional-aged college students are particularly susceptible to the emotional stressors that can be caused by self-esteem issues. Increased self-confidence won’t happen overnight, but here are some tips that might help you to feel more self-assured in new or stressful situations.
Being a college student can be scary. It’s likely you’ve left the comfortable surroundings of your high school, your home town, and your family. Students these days may be more attached to their parents due to the modern conveniences like cell phones that allow them to stay connected.
If you find yourself picking up the phone often to consult mom or dad about a decision that’s facing you, resist the urge to ask their advice. Instead, make a list of pros and cons or think the situation through on your own, then act on your decision. Tackling even small problems on your own can lead to increased confidence in your ability to do so in the future.
Related to independence from family and other authority figures is the ability to do things on your own. By this, I don’t necessarily mean literally by yourself. What I do mean is that it’s important to make decisions independent of your friends and influence group. Adolescents so often rely on the input of their peers when making decisions in their everyday lives. That’s normal, and it’s okay.
What’s problematic is losing yourself and your own identity to those around you. If you think you may fall into this category, consider branching out. Try to join new groups or try different things, like an activity you’ve always wanted to try or even a new way of dress. College is a time to explore and to find yourself.
Be Your Own Cheerleader
Nothing kills self-confidence faster than negative thinking or self-talk. Do you often find yourself thinking, “I’ll never be able to do that.” or “I’m not smart enough to become one of those.”? If so, try changing your thinking just a little by saying, “That’s a big goal, but I can try. I’ve accomplished pretty big stuff before.” How you think directly affects how you feel.
Another problem many of us encounter is absolute thinking. We think we “have to” do something or we “should” be a certain way. That kind of thinking can be very damamging to self-confidence. Try to eliminate absolutes.
I could go on for days on this subject. To learn more, check out this article on building self-confidence.