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Help Yourself to a Better Future

There are very many methods for achieving improvement to our personal confidence and self esteem, far too many to investigate in depth in a short information file. So on this page, we will have a look at the most popular and, for most people, the most effective.

Self Acceptance
Motivation & Goal Setting
Self hypnosis
Coaching/therapy

Self Acceptance

Self acceptance is one of the most important aspects of personal confidence and also for self esteem. The trick is to work out what you can change and set about doing so - and this page has a good few hints how you can go about that - and accept that which you cannot change.

We all have aspects of our personality and 'way of being' that we feel uncomfortable about; maybe we see ourselves as selfish, dim on occasions, over-emotional, under-responsive, or any one of a whole variety of pretty standard human behaviour patterns. The trouble is that when anybody mentions any of those things, our personal confidence is dented and self esteem sags. Yet accept those things as just part of what goes to make the whole of you and that overall, you are no worse and no better than the next human being and you can start to enjoy being you and all that being you means.

For example...

A child's school reports consistently commented on his talkativeness:"Billy is very intelligent," the teacher would say, "But he's a chatterbox - he never stops talking.". His parents laughed and showed others who also laughed. The child didn't understand why talking was such a bad thing though nonetheless tried to do less of it... but all that happened was that his fascination and enthusiasm for some new discovery would suddenly burst out of him in a torrent of excited chatter. One day, when he was a young adult, somebody said: "My God, do you never stop talking?" That hit hard at the sore spot that had been created over the years and he suddenly started to stutter.

Then people laughed even more. Social gatherings, parties, dinners, holidays, even family get-togethers all quickly became no-go areas. He became introverted and timid and eventually found himself with a therapist, recounting those early experiences of people laughing because he was a 'chatterbox'.

"Tell me again about that teacher," the therapist said.

"She said I never stopped talking," Billy replied.

"That's funny," the therapist said. "I though you told me she said you were intelligent."

"I don't think I noticed that bit..." Billy said wonderingly.

The Ugly Duckling

From that moment on, it was like the Ugly Duckling story all over again. There was an almost instant acceptance that he was a natural talker, a communicator of ideas and concepts. Time passed. Billy talked A LOT and if anybody said anything at all about it, he would simply smile and agree with them. "I've always been talkative," he would say, "Thank goodness. I love to share all my ideas." No comments could hit any target now and there was no longer a sore spot; he knew that his talkativeness was a measure of his intelligence and his entire joy of living.

Acceptance is a wonderful thing. Accept the way you are and embrace it - warts and all - and you will become instantly more comfortable with yourself and others. When you accept those facets of self which you thought were negative, no matter what they are, nobody can push your buttons any more because you won't be trying to hide them. More importantly, perhaps, you will discover that many others actually like those facets of self that you tried so hard to conceal!

Motivation

One of the prime necessities to achieve good motivation in life or career is to have a clear goal - if you don't have, then it's extremely unlikely that you will achieve much. Yet set a goal and set it well, know exactly why you want it and how your life will improve when you get it and you're almost home and dry!

When setting your goals, it is important that you recognise the four rules that apply to any goal, if you are to have any chance of getting what you want:

- The goal must be plausible, possible and realistic
- It must be suitable for your personality type
- You must have a clear idea of what you are seeking
- Positive orientation

Plausible and Realistic

Anything that can be done, you can do. Anything that could never be done, you will not achieve, either. We are not conducting magic but simply using natural resources to achieve natural goals. If you are 65 years old, for instance, you will not become an Olympic standard athlete. It simply is not realistic. If you have only one leg, you cannot attempt to climb Mount Everest for exactly the same reason.

Suitable for Your Personality

For a goal to have a chance of success it should reflect your natural personality; always select a goal that you feel would not surprise others - although they may well be surprised at how easily you achieve it!

A Clear Idea

You have to know EXACTLY what it is that you want. It sounds obvious but an awful lot of people simply have never worked it out! Somebody might say: "I want to make something of myself." Well, good? but make what exactly? The subconscious - and that is the part of you which will achieve success or otherwise - only works with uncomplicated and positive statements with no ambiguity or implication. After all, if you made a failure of yourself, that would comply with the above goal, wouldn't it? 'Make a success' is not much better, either. One person's success simply doesn't 'work' for another. "I want to have my own business selling music CDs on the internet," is a clear goal. So is: "I want to make xxxxxxxx money a year from my music website," as long as you state a figure that you know can be achieved. Make your goal specific and you have a far higher chance of success.

Self hypnosis

There are very many methods of improving self worth and confidence. The most important thing to recognise, probably, is that precisely nothing will happen if you don't put some input into the plan. You can read the best self help books in the world and nothing will happen unless you have an action plan. You can listen to self help and personal development CDs until you know them off by heart, but the result will be a big fat nothing if that is all you do.

If you want to get anywhere, you have to accept that it is YOU who must make the change - nobody, absolutely nobody, can do it for you. Nothing changes if nothing changes...

Self hypnosis can be remarkably effective for the reduction of stress and improvement in life generally. It is a specific skill and one which can easily be learned via one of the many books on the subject or via one of the many free self hypnosis courses available on the internet.

Though some people are wary of hypnosis and self hypnosis until they discover more about it, it's used on a daily basis by sportsmen and musicians, business people and artists, housewives, policemen, engineers, shop assistants... in fact it's used by millions of people from all walks of life all over the globe!

Let's dispel a few of the anxieties that some visitors might have... the following 'rules' are applicable to all types of hypnosis:

- You cannot 'get stuck' - this is quite impossible
- You do not become unconscious or go to sleep
- You know what's happening at all times
- You can exit the state whenever you wish to
- You cannot 'lose your mind'
- It is not connected in any shape or form with the occult
- There is no such thing as a 'hypnotised feeling'
- It is actually a totally natural state which we all go into several times a day
- It is very similar to meditation or relaxation techniques
- IT IS COMPLETELY SAFE!

Getting into a state of self-hypnosis is a specific skill and as with all skills, some people are better at it than others. It is fair to say, though, that almost everybody can benefit from learning how to use it. Among other things, you can help yourself to:

- Combat Stress - use it with the routines above for a real power session!
- Lose weight
- Quit smoking
- Improve sporting and other performance
- Increase concentration and recall
- Improve confidence and self-confidence
- Work effectively with motivation issues

As mentioned earlier, there are very many books on the subject of self hypnosis as well as free courses - but do be sure to get one that is written by a professional in the field.

Motivational therapy, and personal confidence

Finally, an excellent way of developing your life in the way you want it is to visit a motivational coach, hypnotherapist or NLP practitioner. Huge numbers of sporting personalities, stars of stage and screen, wildly successful business leaders and 'executive climbers', amongst others, have achieved their success via this route. Hypnotherapy and/or NLP can provide somewhat faster and more long-lasting results than coaching and often with fewer sessions.

If you decide to investigate this route, your local Yellow Pages is a good starting point; initial consultations are often at no charge, though you should make clear exactly why you are consulting.

Terence Watts is a successful therapist, lecturer and author of hypnotherapy and self-help books. He runs his own school in the UK and has conducted more than 24,000 sessions of hypnosis and hypnotherapy since 1989. http://www.eccellenti.com has a complete range of self help books and CDs, as well as several free information files. There is also a free self hypnosis course written by Terence.

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