girls on medicine balls

How to Beat Gymtimidation

Gymtimidation is a real thing, but if you’re feeling less than confident, what can you do to push yourself forward? Fake it til you make it of course.

One of the most common reason people start working out is the belief that it will help build their self-esteem. You know the drill, you don’t feel great about yourself so you start going to the gym in an effort to look better. This in turn boosts your confidence. However, in actual fact it should be high self-esteem that makes you want to work out as you strive to be the best you can be.

Realistically, however, boosting your self-esteem is easier said than done. Especially when you think about the feeling that Elite Daily coined gymtimidation – the fear of working out because the environment is intimidating. Some of the things we find intimidating include other gym members, the technical side of working out or a lack of understanding with the machinery. How do you get over it? It takes effort, but you start by paying attention to where you want to be not where you are. Don’t dwell on how you feel right now but instead, focus on how you’ll feel when you achieve those goals. And remember, nobody is looking at you, because everybody is too busy thinking about themselves.

Ask for help

Keep your priorities right and ask for help if you need it. Not sure your form is right? Ask a trainer. Not sure you’re using the machine correctly? Ask a trainer. This is exactly why they’re there. If you’re embarrassed about approaching them fake it until you make it and change your body language so you appear more confident than you are. Something as simple as maintaining eye contact can really help. As can turning your body towards the person you’re talking to, which sends a message that you’re confident and approachable. Remember also that the trainers are experts, there to do a job, so once you ask the question they’ll do most of the talking.

Apart from looking confident for others, you also need to be kinder to yourself. By maintaining an optimistic mindset you’ll not only improve your self-esteem but you’ll also start to appreciate yourself more. How do you do it? The key is not to pressure yourself into feeling positive all the time. Instead, re-frame your mind into being objective so you can have a better outlook in general. For instance, every time you catch yourself being negative, evaluate if those poor opinions have basis. The likelihood is that many of your feelings are unfounded.

Try also to keep a list of accomplishments and small achievements you make every day and soon you’ll realise how far you’ve come. Finding self-esteem is an ongoing project but once you make a habit of being kinder to yourself it will all come much easier.