10 Ways Self Discipline Breeds Self Confidence

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In the business world, self-discipline is one of the most important traits an entrepreneur

self (confidence) (Photo credit: flyzipper)

can have. Travis Bradberry, a contributor to Forbes.com, understood this fact when he created an article featuring six ways to boost self-control. What many fail to realize, though, is that self-discipline actually breeds self-confidence, another important element of a successful businessperson. Here are ten ways that self-discipline creates a strong sense of self-confidence.

1. The Achievement of Small, Measurable Goals

Self confidence is something that is earned and developed over time. You cannot simply go to sleep and wake one morning with a renewed and strong sense of self confidence. Self confidence must be nurtured and fed, like a growing child. One way to provide continual sustenance to one's sense of self confidence is to set small, achievable goals and then use self discipline to achieve those goals. The process of regularly achieving the goals you set for yourself will help to create a strong sense of self confidence. Start by setting a few goals that can be achieved in a single day. When your self-discipline has grown enough to meet those goals, try setting goals that take a week or a month to achieve.

2. Avoid Disappointing Your Biggest Critic

Your biggest critic is, of course, yourself. People are hardest on themselves because they place unnecessary expectations on their own lives. They may set unreachable goals or compare their own lives to the lives of others. When you develop a sense of self-discipline, you will be able to stop disappointing yourself. The key, of course, is to set goals that you can realistically achieve. Shooting for the stars is great in theory, but practically it will only lead to disappointment and devastation. If you have low self-confidence, try exercising your self-discipline. Improving one helps to improve the other.

3. More Accurate Image of Your True Self

Self-discipline can help a person create a more accurate image of their own self. Often, the real problem behind low self-esteem or self-confidence is an inaccurate or unfair self-image. When we practice self discipline, we are able to identify our strengths, talents, and skills alongside our weaknesses, trouble spots, and areas where skill is lacking. Having a realistic understanding of both characteristics will help to establish a strong and stable sense of self-confidence.

4. Understanding Your Goals and Hopes

Self-discipline requires an individual to clearly determine his or her goals, hopes, and dreams. In order to create milestones for achievement, a person must understand in what direction he or she is heading. Knowing this about yourself can also improve your self-confidence. Having clear visions and dreams can create confidence, especially when you start making progress toward those dreams. This is just another example of how self-discipline and self-confidence are inseparably linked.

5. Understanding Your Struggles and Weaknesses

Self-discipline, of course, is not always a rosy and dream-filled experience. Sometimes, self-discipline makes us painfully aware of our own shortcomings. You may discover devastating triggers that derail your efforts and cause you to fall short of your goals. Understanding these weaknesses, however, won't damage your self-confidence. On the contrary, knowing your weaknesses will help you develop a more realistic assessment of yourself. You'll be confident in spite of your weaknesses.

6. Earn the Admiration and Respect of Others

Self-discipline is a difficult trait to master. When you do master this trait, you'll have the recognition and approval of your peers and your superiors. People respect hard work and determination, and this admiration and respect can improve your own sense of self-confidence.

7. Learn to Like Yourself

Part of developing a strong sense of self-confidence involves learning to like yourself. This is a huge struggle for many people because they simply don't care for their personality traits, their assortment of skills and talents, or their tendencies as a person. When you practice self-discipline, though, and stop disappointing yourself on a regular basis, you will gradually start to approve of your actions. This approval will eventually develop into a strong sense of approval and even affection for your own person. Liking yourself will dramatically boost your self-confidence.

8. Goals Become Easier to Achieve

When you continually practice self-discipline, you'll find that the goals you set for yourself become easier and easier to achieve. A person who is in the habit of making goals and achieving goals begins to develop a "Yes, I can" attitude. This attitude can make all the difference in a business setting. A person who regularly sets goals and falls short of those goals begins to assume that he or she will always fall short of the mark. This negative attitude is detrimental to one's chances of success and to one's sense of self-confidence. Every time you reach a goal, you make a deposit in the "self-confidence bank." The more deposits you make, the more the principal balance will grow.

9. Failures Become Easier to Move Past

On the flip side, regular self-discipline also teaches a person how to move past failures. For an individual without self-discipline, failures often spell disaster. A single failure can spread out and affect a variety of other tasks and goals. Many people let failures start a domino effect in their lives; one domino knocks over the next, which knocks over the next, and so on. With self-discipline, however, mistakes are perceived as temporary setbacks and nothing more. Your self-confidence will improve when you don't let mistakes shake your resolve.

10. Self-Discipline Creates Your Ideal You

Above all, self-discipline helps to create your ideal concept of your own person. Everyone has a realistic self-image and an ideal self-image. The more you practice self-discipline, the more your realistic self moves closer to achieving the status of your ideal self. This, of course, will dramatically boost your self confidence because you'll have achieved your own defined version of success.

Failing to implement self-discipline strategies may negatively affect a person's self-confidence, which in turn can derail even the most promising business endeavors.

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