“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

I have been speaking about self-confidence for multiple weeks on this workshop because it is essential any time, and especially so in difficult times. No one knows the future. But if we shrink into fear in the face of it and struggle with doubt and hesitation as a result, everyone loses, especially ourselves. Self-confidence not only gives us the courage to move forward and naturally support others to do the same, but it helps us tap into our truest nature, beyond any limiting beliefs. So what is it, and how do we cultivate it?

Perhaps the first step in cultivating self-confidence is understanding what it is not. Self-confidence is not an armor to put on, nor is it a bolstering of ego to “psych yourself up”. Instead, true self-confidence is more of a surrendered allowing. This is because your true nature is just waiting to arise through you and guide your life. It is in harmony with the natural world and the cosmos. Real self-confidence is actually humble. It is the willingness to get to know your soul voice, trust your inner wisdom, and honour your connection with the universe. This is a moment-to-moment practice, one you enrich every day by giving it your conscious attention and sincere effort.

This week, I would like to share a guided visualization you can do any time. It cultivates courage and confidence. It strengthens your emotional resourcefulness as you face doing something new. It helps you take stock of where you are stuck. And it offers you support to step past your comfort zone while building your self-trust.

• Find a quiet place where you feel safe and relaxed. Sit comfortably, close your eyes, and bring your awareness to your breath. Notice yourself breathing, gently in and out.
• Then allow your imagination to deepen as you visualize or sense that every cell in your body, and throughout your whole being, is full of shimmering, white light. Breathe in and out that light. Feel it resonating all through you. Take a few moments to fill yourself up with light, feeling good about who you are.
• Continue to breathe deeply, being in this light. Allow yourself to enjoy this light, just by being here. You don’t need to go anywhere to find the light, or this expansive feeling.
• As you breathe with awareness and luminosity, allow yourself to feel rooted through your tailbone, legs and feet. Feel connected with the Earth. Let your energy anchor into the ground.
• Then from this steadiness, continuing to breathe mindfully, see if you can feel life-force energy arise through your every cell, into vital expansion, a fuller expression of who you are. Feel enlivened, your heart open, your mind calm.
• Breathe and be with this feeling of strength and courage for some time.
• Now, think for a moment about any urge you may feel periodically to play small, like replaying bad habits, staying in toxic relationships, or hanging onto undermining thinking patterns. Choose a particular situation. Become aware of everything you can about it. Notice what the urge to stay in that pattern feels like. Does it feel open-hearted anchored and bright all at the same time? Or does it feel constricted, ungrounded and dull?
• When you notice which choice keeps you feeling luminous, rooted, vital, and expansive, that is the way to go. If a choice you regularly make goes against that, you likely need to change it.
• After you have finished checking one pattern, take a moment returning to your place of light and courage.
• Then try visualizing or sensing another situation. How does it make you feel? Do you still feel luminous and strong? What thoughts, emotions and actions are not in harmony with your truest self? When you are true to who you are, you feel surrendered, relaxed, and capable at the same time. Enjoy the experience of self-confidence, feeling safe to soften and being naturally you.
• Now take a few long deep breaths and feel good about the gift you just gave yourself and the world by doing this exercise. Remind yourself that feeling luminous, strong and relaxed is always available to you in each moment, anywhere, if you so choose.
• Then, slowly, whenever you feel ready, open your eyes, and smile at yourself and the now with self-confidence. Welcome the fullness of the moment before you, as it is rich in possibilities.

Please share this with everyone you know to pass on the light and help our world shine.

From my heart to yours,
Parvati