Has a lack of confidence ever stopped you from achieving something you truly wanted to? Prevented you from speaking your mind? Or resulted in a downward spiral of anxiety and depression? I know it has for me – and I’m sure I’m not alone.
In fact, I’ve been feeling this way recently, so when I was invited to attend Quiet Connections first confidence workshop this week, I thought “Great! This really couldn’t have come at a better time!”.
Now, you may be wondering “Well why have you lost your confidence?”
When I found out that I was receiving these grants and been accepted onto these programmes to help get New Day started up – SHIT. BECAME. VERY. REAL. And whilst it’s completely natural to feel a little anxious when doing something that:
- Is so important to you
- Anything could happen!
I accepted that is was okay to feel this way, and I was still super, super excited!
But then (as it does) life took over and for the last like 10 weeks, I have been non-stop (and don’t get me wrong, I’ve done some awesome things!) but in and amongst all the hustle and bustle I had forgotten my golden rule – look after yourself.
As a result my anxiety shot right up, I lost my confidence, I’ve been stressed out, not sleeping properly and feeling exhausted. I just felt flat! And whilst I normally know how to manage this, it seemed to have started to feel a little out of my control.
So, as you can imagine, I was really looking forward to popping down to the vibrant Cafe Chaos in Truro to meet with Quiet Connections and see if I could get myself feeling back on track again.
Who are Quiet Connections?
Quiet Connections was set up by Hayley and Michele who specialise in coaching and counselling for introverted young adults who would benefit from learning management techniques for dealing with anxiety and boosting their confidence! Sounds great right?
If you’d like to find out more (and you really should), you can always pop on over to their website.
I had actually met Hayley and Michele from QC last month after we found out we were both accepted onto the Lloyds School for Social Entrepreneurs programme (starting next month! Eeek how exciting!) – we got together for a little chat about how we could work together, so you’ll be hearing a lot about these guys in the future!
The Confidence Workshop
They really couldn’t have chosen a more perfect setting than Cafe Chaos for holding it – it was bright, colourful, welcoming and the big super comfy sofas we were all sat on really helped to create that relaxing environment that is essential to these types of things.
To begin with, we discussed what confidence and anxiety is and how our minds and bodies react to our natural fight, flight or freeze instinct. I love getting down to the science of things so naturally I found this really interesting!
One of my favourite parts of the evening was being plugged up to a computer and having the opportunity to see how my heart-rate staggers when I’m anxious and then smooths out into waves when I become relaxed. As a visual person it made such a difference to me to be able to make that connection between what it feels like, what it looks like and what is actually happening physically.
I’m trying to be careful here not to give too much away because they’re sure to be holding another confidence workshops in the future – and I would highly recommend attending! But the workshop continued with Hayley and Michele sharing 3 very simple and effective techniques that you can use everyday to help control your anxiety and in turn raise your confidence.
How Did It Help Me?
Now, the funny thing is, is that these techniques are tools I have used in the past and that I know work. The stupid thing is – I had forgotten to use them. (Remember? Life getting in the way and not looking after myself?)
The biggest thing that I took away with me that evening was that I needed to refocus (what was left of) my energy onto myself again. It wasn’t something that was directly discussed, but as the workshop became a reminder to practice techniques that I hadn’t allowed myself the time to do, it then also became a reminder that I had been neglecting my well-being. I needed a break. I needed to actually relax – and not just try to convince myself that I was, like I had been doing.
I gave myself permission the following day to stop working at a normal time – and most importantly, to not feel guilty about it (this is something that has become increasingly hard for me to do – and it’s also a discussion for another time). And using 2 out of the three exercises we went over at the workshop, I finally allowed my mind to rest.
Surprise, surprise, I woke up the next day and for the first time in weeks, I felt rested! Energised! Recharged! (It was so welcome!) And naturally, because stress, anxiety andconfidence are all very closely linked and tied together, by addressing one of the problems, which in this case was relieving some stress, I was able to maintain and manage a lower level of anxiety and feel more confident in myself. I got some of my fight and motivation back! Woohoo!
Will The Workshop Work For You?
Yes, if anxiety affects your self-esteem and confidence.
Yes, if you want to learn about how anxiety affects your confidence, mind and body.
Yes, if you’re looking for simple but effective methods to help that can be worked into your daily life with ease.
Yes, if you need a welcoming and safe space where you can openly speak without judgement.
Yes, if meeting like-minded people will help you not feel as if you’re struggling alone!
How Will I Find Out When The Next Workshop Will Be?