Something we may think of as being responsible for low self-esteem is the “dorsolateral prefrontal cortex” which serves as –among other things – our “inner critic.” When this goes into overdrive we question everything and it’s this questioning and doubting that can lead to low confidence and low self-esteem. In fact, confidence can pretty much be defined as “not questioning your decisions or statements.”
Being able to turn off the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex when in social settings can immediately mitigate the effects of low self- esteem then by allowing you to be more “in the moment.” In turn this will make you more fluent and more charming and you’ll come away having had positive social experiences that can help with combating anxiety.
How do you shut down your inner critic? One method is meditation which can teach you the mental discipline to stay in the here and now. Otherwise, just try to focus on whatever you’re doing and to react in the moment. Stop thinking about what you’re going to say and listen. The more you focus and engage with what you’re doing, the more the DLPC switches off.
This is one of the reasons that meditation is SUCH a powerful tool for helping to combat negative feelings and beliefs, and getting you to feel more positive and optimistic. Another tip? Do things you are truly passionate about, in order to smash apart those negative beliefs and feelings!
Working out is one of the most effective ways to boost your confidence. Of course being in great shape makes you look and feel good which is immediately positive for your sense of self-worth. More to the point though, it also triggers the release of many more hormones and neurotransmitters that can affect the brain. In the short term, exercising boosts the release of endorphins which in turn act as natural “antidepressants” and can drastically improve your mood. Likewise, simply having more muscle will increase your production of testosterone which in turn makes you more focused, more aggressive and more confident. If you’re the “shrinking wallflower” type, then adding some muscle can change that regardless of gender. The other reason this can transform the way you view yourself, is because it helps with the “law of attraction” which we touched on
earlier but will explore in more depth in a moment.
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