cartwheelBy Ceder Finnie

Confidence is an issue for everyone at one point or another, whether we know it or not. When it comes to looking for a job or making a career move, the more confidence you can project the greater chance you have of becoming successful. Everyone, even the people who always seem so sure of themselves, have their moments of insecurity where they question, does this outfit look good? Will I get this job? And does that person like me?

We all want to be rock stars. Here’s your chance.

The great thing about life is we have a lot more control than we may think. It’s amazing how finding an activity that pushes us physically and mentally can improve the way we view ourselves and even how others view us. There is power in being able to take control of your body and, in setting a goal and achieving it, you feel you can conquer the world.

So tomorrow morning when you wake up, grab a protein shake and resolve to make small changes. Walking up stairs on your tiptoes exercises your ankles all the way up to your core, and a stronger core gives you a stronger abdomen and back, generating a feeling of confidence. Take a minute a day to lean against your wall, arms extended, shoulder-width apart, and slide into a sitting position, holding it for as long as you can. This exercise, too, will correct your posture and promote strength in your legs.

A good cardio workout is as simple as pulling out that old skipping rope and skipping non-stop for five minutes. This workout is the equivalent to running five miles. If you can commit to doing this every day, you will soon feel unstoppable.

Complementing your new routine with a great diet is definitely a benefit. This doesn’t mean that you should only eat lettuce or cut out all the food you love. You are not a rabbit, so don’t eat like one. A proper diet can consist of small changes such as no carbohydrates after 4 p.m., unless you’re going to be active. Skip McDonald’s today and grab some fresh fruit; if you want to get really crazy, add yogurt. Switch from that fried chicken and fries or mashed potatoes to a skinless chicken breast and some fresh vegetables. And please continue to eat your dessert, you deserve it!

Coming from a martial arts background, I can honestly say there is nothing like knowing you spent that last hour learning how to throw the perfect kick complemented by an extraordinary upper cut to increase your personal confidence. Martial arts may not be the activity for you, but yoga, dance lessons or whatever else it may be, will give you that extra touch of confidence and control that all of us search for.

The first few activities you try may not be for you and that’s ok, don’t give up! I myself, have played hockey, lifted weights and finally settled into martial arts. For me it is all about awaking a passion, and soon the confidence of having found our true calling.

Ceder Finnie is Western Canada’s female champion in light-weight mixed martial arts, with two gold medals, one silver and one bronze. Ceder holds four belts in different styles of martial arts and specializes in muay thay and weapons.

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