Here are two quick ways to boost your confidence despite the
uncertainty and fear around us. You can lift your spirits and build your
morale by taking these simple do-it-yourself actions. Repeat as needed!
Wrap Yourself in Love. If there were a master tool for confidence,
it would be oxytocin. (Not oxycontin – a dangerous drug.) It is the “love
hormone” or “bonding hormone.”
Oxytocin is a sure fire way to manage the body’s stress response and
return to a sense of calm. This hormone provides a neurochemical prompt
for the sense of peace, well-being, and tolerance. Although there are
commercially available “oxytocin” sprays, they can be expensive, and their
formulation is not regulated.
Twenty seconds of a full-body hug from someone you feel close to and
trust will also trigger the release of oxytocin. If no one meets that
description, you can generate oxytocin with your own gentle touch. Putting
your hand over your heart for a few minutes is a simple and direct way to
get an oxytocin hit.
You can also stimulate oxytocin by massaging your scalp, forehead,
jaws, ears, or nose. Within a few minutes, your anxiety will diminish and
you’ll feel more content.
Use Positive Self-Talk. This tool is a favorite of the SEALs. The U.S.
Navy found that when soldiers participating in SEALs training were taught to
use positive self-talk, their success rate rose dramatically.
Each of us says between three hundred and a thousand words to
ourselves in our head every minute. Those words can be negative: “I’ll never
get used to this mask. I can’t breathe. It fogs my glasses and messes up my
make-up.” Or those words can be positive: “Just keep at it. In time you
won’t notice it. You’ll feel good for protecting those around you.”
Getting sick with Covid might also be the topic of conversations you
have with yourself. Are you saying, “I’m so scared I’ll get Covid and die”?
Try turning that around to “I’m following the advice of the CDC and expect
to see the happy days when the pandemic is over.”
When you use these tools to manage your concern, your shoulders will
lift and you may even start wearing a smile.