How to rebuild your confidence
Lifestyle Personal Growth

8 important ways I’m slowly rebuilding my confidence this year

I decided to rebuild my confidence after years of feeling like I am not enough.

If you live with a chronic illness like me, you should have an idea of how tough it is to build your confidence.

You want to be confident and show up as society expects.

It is even tougher when you are a guy like me, you want to exhibit what society thinks a man should look and act like. Confident, staunch, and focused.

But unfortunately, each time you try to act confident, your chronic illness finds a way to flush it down the drain. 

My journey with sickle cell disorder made me realize that building confidence is a constant battle. This minute you are doing great and loving yourself, the next you are struggling to find yourself and rebuild your confidence.

With a chronic illness, there is a constant need to remind ourselves that we are more than our illness and we deserve every good thing.

My struggle with low confidence begins

I was born with sickle cell disorder (which is the only way to have it anyway) and growing up wasn’t like every other kid.

In people living with this disease, there is a high chance of also having anemia, which is due to the shortage of red blood cells.

The shortage of red blood cells also causes delayed growth and puberty.

As a child living with sickle cell anemia, I didn’t grow well like my peers. I was the smallest and skinniest just as expected.

I was teased because of my stature, even bullied, and that made me gradually begin to hate my body and lose confidence in myself.

When I started my development journey, it was because I wanted to be more confident in myself and my abilities.

Although, it worked until 2016 when I was diagnosed with avascular necrosis of the left femur (hip bone).

Avascular necrosis is the death of the bone tissue due to the lack of blood supply. The lack of blood supply was caused by sickled red blood cells.

With avascular necrosis comes pain and partial disability.

My physical appearance was altered as the hip degenerated further. I had to limp and use a walking stick to reduce pressure on my leg.

It was difficult staying confident with AVN.

Walking with a stick was a different struggle.

Moving forward, I had to rebuild my confidence. Here is how I am rebuilding my confidence.

How to rebuild your confidence

Ways I’m slowly rebuilding my confidence this year

1. Reading more personal development books

I think books are one of the biggest highlights of my growth journey. To think I use to assume that I do not like to read until I figured out something about myself.

I figured that I enjoyed reading when I am reading a book about a topic or character that interests me.

Books that talked about personal growth and becoming one’s best were what I wanted to read. I couldn’t wait to dive into books centered around these topics.

Books by Tony Robbins, Bob Proctor, and Brian Tracy were some of my favorites. And they taught me a lot.

2. Reading other people’s story

I believe people share their stories to make other people feel less alone.

When I was diagnosed with avascular necrosis, I asked questions like “why is it only me?”.

However, when I joined an online community of people living with sickle cell, I heard stories of people who have dealt with and are still dealing with avascular necrosis.

This made me realize that I was not alone. I was far from alone.

Also, reading the autobiography of some people was life-changing for me.

I remembered being grateful and full of hope when I read about Stephen Hawking.

In Nick Vujicic’s book life without limits, he shared what it means to be born without arms or legs. The book was not only motivational but also uplifting.

So, reading other people’s stories played a huge role in helping me rebuild my confidence.

3. Sharing my story

Stories are meant to create human connections. This, I did not realize until I started sharing my story.

I didn’t think it was important when I started sharing my story. I just needed a platform to share my thought and my experience.

Instagram was the platform I started with and guess what, I built a community there just by sharing my story. I got so many comments telling me how they are inspired by my story. Also, I met so many awesome people online.

When you share your story with others (could be with a very small group of people like friends and family or a large audience like social media), you find that you are not alone.

4. Learning to love me 

I knew confidence would not happen unless I love myself.

It started with learning to accept me and my physical appearance.

Self-love is a life-long journey because we keep evolving but I am willing to go on that journey.

Affirmations were really useful in rewiring my thoughts about myself. I constantly reminded myself that I am more than my physical appearance.

Exercising was also very helpful. I use to think all of the awesome statements about exercise were just to make people want to exercise but I was wrong.

I discovered that whenever I exercised, I felt so much confidence and love for myself. Honestly, I do feel like a Dwyane Johnson whenever I finish working out, no matter how short the workout is.

5. Journaling

For a very long time, I use to think there was a certain way to journal but I know better now.

Writing my thought (a.k.a journaling) has helped me tremendously. Whenever I grab my diary, I’m scribbling down every thought and emotion that I am feeling in it.

There are no rules, no guidelines for journaling. I just write as it comes.

This helped me analyze my feelings, my thoughts, and how I can even move forward.

Journaling is something I can recommend to anyone especially if you need clarity in your life.

6. Upgrading my skills and growing as a human

Another important thing I did to rebuild my confidence was to upgrade myself, especially my skills.

There is a different level of confidence that you unlock every time you learn how to do something that used to be difficult.

First, I decided what part of my life I wanted to upgrade. Then, I took steps toward getting better at it.

I remembered picking my finances and career, then taking courses on how to get the life I wanted in that area.

Although I am not there yet the little upgrade that happened boosted my confidence.

7. Fashion

This might sound weird but the way I dress affects how I feel. The moment I realized this, I started taking my fashion style more seriously.

For example, I noticed that wearing sneakers makes me feel more confident in my physical appearance than wearing slip-on shoes. That means more sneakers on my shoe rack.

Yes, fashion has also helped me rebuild my confidence.

So, be conscious of how you feel when you dress and make effort to wear clothes that make you feel confident and comfortable.

8. Taking care of myself

This is another form of self-love that helped me in rebuilding my confidence.

Investing in myself and my health made a lot of changes. Nothing feels better than taking good care of yourself. Exercise, your diet, and your mental health are all important in caring for yourself.

Oh, another thing is that I no longer postpone enjoyment. I spoil myself silly whenever I have the chance.

How to rebuild your confidence

Conclusion on ways I rebuild my confidence

I think this post also shows you how to rebuild your self-confidence. Although, because they worked for me doesn’t mean all of it will work for you.

Building confidence whether you live with a chronic illness or not is a journey. Keep taking actions that you know will grow your confidence.

Sometimes, put yourself in situations that would require you to be confident. I intentionally did this by meeting strangers anytime I get the chance.

Are you struggling with building your confidence? What steps are you taking? I’d love to know and learn as well, so, share with me in the comments section.

Also, please share this post with a friend. Don’t stop spreading the love.

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