Do you welcome and rise to challenges? Or do you avoid them at all costs? How you approach challenges is an indicator of your degree of self-efficacy.
Self-efficacy is a person’s belief in their ability to succeed in a particular situation or their belief in their ability to achieve certain goals for themselves, such as losing weight. In order to be successful at weight loss, you have to have confidence and a belief in your ability to reach your goal.
Too little or too much confidence gets in the way of success. Research shows that self-efficacy is one of the primary indicators of whether people achieve their weight loss goals. If we don’t have enough confidence and self-efficacy, we will quit as soon as we encounter an obstacle, or we won’t exert the necessary effort because we don’t believe we will be successful anyway.
Overconfidence leads to failure with weight loss, and other life goals. As soon as we think we’ve got something handled, we tend to become less vigilant and diligent, and this leads to a slip up or even failure.
Therefore, it’s important to have the right amount of confidence and humility so that we can continue to learn throughout the weight loss process and make the necessary adjustments that will lead to our eventual success.
Psychologist Albert Bandura states that self-efficacy impacts our moods, behavior, and our level of motivation.
People who have high levels of self-efficacy are:
- Confident in their abilities
- Feel they can reach their goals
- Easily recover from setback and disappointments
- Have high levels of focus and commitment towards their goals
People with low levels of self-efficacy:
- Get frustrated easily
- Lose motivation and focus quickly
- Focus on their failings and perceived flaws
- Quickly lose confidence in their ability to reach their goals
How to Develop More Self-Efficacy and Confidence
- Make small changes. Pick one behavior like walking or eating more vegetables and do it until it’s second nature. Then add another change. Success builds on success.
- Every morning, take 5 minutes to visualize yourself practicing the new behavior. This helps to imprint your subconscious and helps to break through any resistance you have.
- Get support. It helps to be around people who have the same goals as you. Join a support group or enlist a friend and mutually support each other.
- Stop listening to your doubts and negative self-talk. When it kicks in, repeat affirmations or repeat a mantra. Ask your Higher Power for the strength and confidence you need to keep moving forward.
- Fake it until you make it. Sometimes you have to “act as if” in order to move forward. By doing so, you gain confidence as you do the thing you’re afraid of doing.
- Feed yourself a steady diet of motivation. Every morning, spend a few moments reading inspirational quotes, my Facebook Page or twitter, daily meditations, or listen to motivational CDs in the car on the way to and from work.
- Find a mentor or a coach that you can learn from, who will encourage you, and help you shift your mindset.
Change happens from the inside out. If you want something different, you have to do something different. The best thing you can do for yourself in all areas of your life, is to learn how to manage the anxiety and resistance of change, how to set effective goals, and how to encourage and motivate yourself. With these skills you can achieve any goal you set your sights on. Isn’t that something worth striving for?
How confident are you that you can achieve your weight loss goals? Let me know in the blog comments!
Would you like to increase your self-efficacy and confidence? I offer a free consultation. Contact me.