A promising relationship can be a hard thing to find. People spend years searching for the right person to fully open up to and welcome into their lives. Confidence, however, can be an even harder thing to come by.

What’s more, confidence is 100 percent up to the individual building it. You have complete control of your confidence, where with relationships you really have only half of the control.

So how are these two seemingly different things connected? Well, they actually go hand in hand. People who lack confidence tend to experience unsuccessful relationships and vice versa. Confidence is an extremely important element in a growing relationship.

As a woman, confidence is an even more important item to have in your gym bag when beginning the hard work of dating. It is probably the most difficult thing to develop for a woman, especially a young woman. They have little working knowledge of what confident women truly look like because media portrays women how they “should” be rather than how they are.

Despite the fact that growing confidence can be difficult, there are some things that women can do to help grow their confidence and move them closer in the direction of a healthy and successful relationship.

  1. Education = Self-Esteem

An education is one of the most important things that a woman can obtain if they hope to both move higher up the socioeconomic ladder and the ladder of confidence. With the wide range of degree options women can choose from today, they can gain the necessary skills and education to become a powerful force in whatever workplace they choose, as well as in the world in general.

Advocates like Malala Yousafzai are working closely with world legislation to shift the view of women’s education from an option to a necessity. Women around the world are growing more confident, and with this confidence comes a new wave of self-esteem and self-respect.

With this newfound power, women have been making smarter decisions in all aspects of their life from their romantic relationships to their career goals. Women are no longer choosing to be married by 15 and have several children and no education. Instead women are choosing to seek education to escape from the confines of the consequences an unhealthy relationship can bring.

2. Self-Care Is Critical

Confidence cannot be bought, sold or bargained for. Confidence has to be built and practiced just like muscle groups or fine motor skills. Taking care of yourself, specifically your health, is critical in the development of confidence.

There is a common phrase that says, “Look good, feel good,” and this doesn’t refer to just supermodels and beauty stars. Looking good doesn’t mean you have to weigh 102 pounds and dress in couture. Looking good means you have eaten a balanced breakfast, dressed in something comfortable and chic, and woke up really, truly loving yourself.

Self-care means you maintain your hygiene, prioritize your mental health, you wear clean clothes, you stand with good posture, you take your vitamins. These are all necessary elements to looking good and feeling better. Sometimes all you need to boost your confidence is a cute hat, a slight curl in your hair and a pep in your step.

Men often follow the “look good, feel good” expectation as well by keeping themselves thoroughly groomed and rocking their newest swag. You don’t have to be a woman to gain confidence from your physical appearance.

3. Know Who You Are and Get Excited About It

In my experience, relationships are lost to one main thing: unreal, ingenuous fakeness. When someone doesn’t know who they are or what values they uphold, they tend to behave in whatever fashion pop culture has devised for them. Therefore, some women begin to act overly sexualized and men become players of the game that everyone knows and hates.

When you start a relationship, it is essential that you enter into the relationship as your most genuine self. It is far too easy to get caught up in the heat of a fiery new relationship and find yourself becoming a chameleon to your significant other. No one wants to be in a relationship with themselves, and if they do, they have bigger problems than confidence.

Who you are is beautiful, unique and awe-inspiring. Be who you are, but above that, love who you are. Tell yourself everyday that you are a smart, capable, worthwhile person, and you will never allow anyone to treat you like anything else. If you have a valid confidence in who you are, finding someone who believes all the things you know to be true about yourself will feel like a home run.

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