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These Turtles Are Here To Help You Come Out Of Your Shell

Kid on the internet: "I like turtles." These turtles: "We like ourselves too."

1. Byron wants to you make a list of your strengths and a list of your achievements.

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If you're feeling low on confidence, get a friend to help you write these. They'll be more objective about all the awesome stuff you've done. Write the lists in your journal, like Byron did. No matter what you write them in or on, keep them each in a safe place where you can read them every morning.

2. Littlefin suggests getting the sleep you need to feel more confident.

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You don't have to sleep in a dude's hands on beach day like Littlefin does, but not getting enough sleep can lead to symptoms of depression. So if you're trying to boost your confidence, you're gonna want those eight hours of z's.

3. Bobbi Jo wants you to talk back to your inner critic.

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All that negative self-talk adds up, and when you judge yourself harshly, you're more likely to assume other people are judging you harshly too. They're probably not. They've got their own things to do. They have their own palms to sit in.

When you hear negative self-talk cropping up from your inner critic, send in an inner advocate to talk back. Your list of strengths and achievements are a great place to start for quieting down the inner critic.

4. Fran recommends remembering a time you felt confident, and retracing the steps it took to get to that moment.

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As you can see, Fran is very outgoing, but she's got to work for it, man. Whenever she's feeling a little shy, she revisits a time in her life when she was feeling especially confident.

It could be her graduation day, or the day she got a promotion, or the day she found that huge patch of seagrass to eat. She then thinks about all the things it took to make that moment possible, getting herself ready for the next challenge.

5. Humbert P. Tinyshell uses relabeling to reframe anxious moments.

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It may look adorable to see Humbert all chill and balancing on a finger, but he wasn't always this down for it. Whenever Humbert is facing a moment that could make him anxious, whether it's balancing on a finger or going to a party full of strangers, he relabels that anxiety as excitement.

Psychologist Barbara Markway notes that "symptoms of anxiety and excitement are almost identical. If you feel revved up and think, 'I'm getting anxious,' it creates a destructive spiral. But if you think of it as 'getting excited,' you'll feel more prepared and capable."

6. Dolores starts small, and so should you.

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Coming out of her shell can be hard, so Dolores takes tiny steps to build up to it, such as poking her head out of the water just a little bit.

If your feeling social anxiety, you don't have to jump into huge social situations. Small steps, like dinner at a restaurant with a friend, or practicing saying "hello" to people at the grocery store can help you build up to bigger social events.

7. Hannah Hardshell goes into every party genuinely curious about other people.

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Hanna's not just doing it to be nice, either (although that's a bonus). As psychologist Jennice Vilhauer notes, being curious about others takes the focus off you and generates questions — hence generating conversation — with other people in social situations.

8. Hank makes it his job to make others feel the way he wants to feel.

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That smile on Hank's face? He gets it by making others smile. In almost every situation, the people you encounter want to feel liked and accepted. If you're feeling anxious about a social gathering, set the intention to try and make whomever you meet there feel welcome. If you're genuinely curious about the people you meet, this will be even easier.

9. Bart goes out of his way to help others.

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Bart knows that helping others makes him feel better and more connected to the world. He's not the only one who feels that way.

A 2017 study found that acts of kindness, both large and small, could raise teenagers' feelings of self-worth. From that same study, teens who help strangers (not just friends and family) reported higher self-esteem one year later.

10. Lord Lionel Swimmingford takes risks to build confidence.

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Once Lord Swimmingford learned the value of calculated risk-taking, he began spreading his fins and taking the odd calculated risk every now and then. Alex Malley, the author of The Naked CEO, told Forbes this about the link between risks and confidence:

“The only way to build self-confidence is to take a risk and take action despite your fear of failure, messing up or embarrassment. If things work out, then you now know you can do more than you think. If things don’t work out, you now know that you can handle more than you think. Either way, you’re better off.”

11. When she hits a wall, Donna remember that "no" sometimes just means "not yet."

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Donna learned this from Beth Comstock, the former vice chair of GE who is also a natural introvert. In her career, Beth encountered that a "no" from her boss was often a way of saying that the idea wasn't ready yet. Don't take the "no" as final. If it's something you believe in, it's worth pursuing.

12. Blanche accepts that not everyone will like her...

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It can be hard to accept this fact, especially if you're a natural people pleaser like Blanche. But it is A LOT of work to try and make everyone happy, and Blanche has other stuff she has to work on. So do you. Remember, confidence is not "they will like me," it's "I'll be fine if they don't."

13. ...while Dorothy and Rose remember all the other turtles that do like them.

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It's never a bad idea to keep stock of the people who mean something to you, and remember that you mean something to them too. They've got your back.

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