Being comfortable in your own skin can be one of the greatest challenges that you ever face. Whether you are generally happy with your physical image, working on positive changes, or not quite sure how to accomplish the changes you’d like to make, learning to accept yourself at each stage of your personal development is a powerful factor in whether you will experience more success, have meaningful relationships, and gain respect from others.
People who experience a lack of self-confidence tend to experiences levels of difficulty in a variety of different aspects of their lives. If you’re battling insecurity, it may be holding you back and preventing you from achieving your dreams and goals.
Here are some signs that may indicate insecurity:
- People with a lack of self-confidence can be sensitive to criticism, and they may often react with defensiveness. If you feel uncomfortable with yourself, it can be more challenging to accept your flaws.
Winning the battle against insecurity means developing ways of handling criticism. If you’re confident in your own value, you’ll be open to hearing ways that you may improve aspects of your life, and you’ll also be able to recognize when the criticism is without merit.
If you disagree with whatever criticism you receive, you probably won’t feel the need to argue about it because you’re happy with the way you are and the progress you are making toward your goals.
- Inability to enjoy silence. Some people who feel insecure are unable to deal with any sort of silence. This may challenge you if you find yourself filling every moment with chatter. Perhaps you’re doing this in order to avoid reflecting on yourself, your life, or changes you think you should be making.
Secure individuals can tolerate silence and often enjoy it. When you’re secure, you can allow others to talk without ever having to interject (or interrupt) with your own opinions.
- Joking excessively. If you’re insecure, you may use excessive joking or inappropriate humor as a coping mechanism. A sense of humor is good for your emotional health, but if you feel insecure, you may joke excessively or inappropriately without understanding that you’ve crossed the line.
The best joke tellers are confident individuals. You will be much funnier, and your jokes will be better received if you deliver them with confidence. You’ll also have a better sense of when joking is acceptable, and when it may be hurtful instead of funny.
- Self-promotion. Although this may seem contradictory, sometimes those who suffer from low self-esteem talk about themselves constantly, as if trying to prove themselves to others.
Confident people don’t need to promote themselves in this manner. When you’re confident, you know that how you live your life is the evidence of your positive traits and your value. Even if you’re confident, you’ll still need some validation from others, but you’ll find appropriate ways to ask for it, and won’t need it constantly.
- Because self-esteem challenged individuals often feel threatened by other people, a coping mechanism that sometimes develops is the drive to bully others. If you feel threatened by secure individuals, you may be feeling the power that they hold over themselves. Try developing that power for yourself instead of trying to tear down someone else’s sense of security and self-worth.
Overly competitive. Although some level of competitiveness is natural, when this trait is taken to extremes, it’s often indicative of a problem. If you can’t handle losing without making a huge emotional display – or conversely, by locking your emotions inside until they boil over uncontrollably at a future time, then you may have a challenge with insecurity.
Keep in mind that secure individuals win and lose with grace. Grace relates to respecting your competitors. If you’re comfortable with yourself, then you’ll lose and win with poise, not with bitterness or rancor.
Nothing dictates that an insecure individual must feel that way forever. If you recognize these characteristics in yourself, know that you can win the battle against insecurity and build a better self-image. Confidence and security in yourself and your abilities will improve every aspect of your life by changing how you view yourself and the world around you.