Self-confidence is most definitely the no. 1 pre-requisite to charging what you’re worth so no time to waste!
Great things always begin from inside which is why self-confidence is a must. However, before discovering how to build it, it’s important to define what it is and also what it’s not.
Confidence comes from the Latin con fides (with faith), so self-confidence literally means with faith in oneself.
It’s about trusting yourself and making decisions not just based on rational thinking but on your gut feeling too.
When you learn to trust your own judgement, your confidence will spontaneously grow.
Self-confidence does not mean that you have to be perfect, always get it right or never ask for help. It’s also not arrogance which is unbecoming and certainly not a characteristic you would want to cultivate. Self-confidence is positive, infectious and inspiring.
So now we’ve got that out of the way, I’m going to share 3 steps you can take immediately to ensure your confidence increases day by day. The key to making any change is, of course, awareness which means moving out of the unconscious into the conscious mind. Start with where you are, commit to make building your self-confidence a priority. It doesn’t have to be overwhelming.
Step 1 – Mind/body
Since your mind/body are inextricably linked, you must make sure that your physiology is in a positive state as this will directly impact on your emotions. Notice how your body is right now.
Are you standing or sitting up straight or are you slouching?
What happens when you change your posture? Can you feel the difference?
If you stand up with your head and shoulders down, I can guarantee that you won’t be able to feel confident. However, if you stand up straight, your shoulders down and your weight evenly balanced on both feet, and look right in front of you, you’ll feel much more confident.
Try it for yourself. Check in regularly to see what your body is doing.
Step 2 – Focus on Areas You Are Already Confident In
Humans make many mistakes; however there’s one particular one which has an enormous impact and that’s generalisations. And I can pretty well guarantee that you make generalisations too. For example, you might say: “I’m not a confident person.”
If I was coaching you, I would ask “is that true all of the time?” I would then help you discover many areas in your life where that was simply not true. This would then start to change your belief of I’m not a confident person into perhaps “I’m confident in lots of areas of my life.” As I think you’ll agree, a very different place to be.
The Practical Bit
a) Simply make a list of aspects of your life where you feel confident. It could be something really small like making a cup of tea or something bigger like being able to drive a car, play the piano or make a mean chilli con carne, to name but a few. If you just spend half an hour doing this, you could have a huge list of all the things you do which you take for granted and where you feel completely confident.
b) Choose one area from your list – it doesn’t matter what it is. Now ask yourself what makes you confident in that area. Is it because you have knowledge or experience? Something you’ve been doing for a long time? Or is it something you enjoy? Were you always confident in this area or was there a learning curve? Chances are you had to learn it.
c) Now look at an area where you’re not confident. Ask yourself the following: “What do I need to do or believe to feel more confident? What is lacking?” “Is it a lack of knowledge or experience? How important is it that I master this? What beliefs do I have? Get specific. In this way, you can start to plug the gaps.
By focusing on all the aspects of your life where you are confident, you start to feel more confident. In essence, nothing has changed – only your focus. You are now focusing on all the things you can do rather than a few areas where you lack confidence.
So before tackling something which you are less accomplished at or where you feel uncomfortable, first focus on areas where you are confident so you get yourself into a positive, resourceful state.
Step 3 – Do Things Which You Find Scary
Now when I say do things which you find scary, I don’t mean you have to do a parachute jump or an abseil, although you can if you want to. It doesn’t have to include things which are physically dangerous.
Just something which you consider out of your comfort zone. It could be speaking up in a meeting, when you wouldn’t normally do that or asking a stranger what time it is. It was Eleanor Roosevelt who said “Do one thing each day which scares you.”
As you continue to practise the above three steps regularly, you will see that your confidence will continue to grow day by day. Things which you used to avoid doing through lack of confidence you now take in your stride. Rock-solid confidence doesn’t mean you’ll never experience any fear – it just means that you know that you’ll be able to overcome it!
Please share with your contacts so that they can benefit too.