Confidence: Do You Have It?
Do You Want It?
Self-confidence: A feeling of trust in one’s abilities, qualities, and judgment.
Self-confidence is extremely important in every aspect of your life. Yet so many struggle to find it. The good news: Self-confidence can be learned and built upon, whether you are working on cultivating your own or building the confidence of those around you, it’s well worth the effort! Your level of confidence can show up in many ways…in your behavior, your body language, how you speak, what you say, how you respond and so on.
Look at the list below – which do you most align with?
* Doing what you believe to be right, even if others mock or criticize you for it
* Being willing to take risks and go the extra mile to achieve better things
* Admitting your mistakes and learning from them
* Waiting for others to congratulate you on your accomplishments
* Accepting compliments graciously. “Thank you for noticing!”
Having Low Self-Confidence
* Governing your behavior based on what other people think
* Staying within your comfort zone, fearing failure, avoiding risk
* Working hard to cover up mistakes and hoping that you can fix the problem before anyone notices
* Extolling your own virtues as often as possible and to as many people as possible
* Dismissing compliments offhandedly.
As you can see by the examples, low self-confidence can be self-destructive and negative. Self-confident people are generally more positive. They believe in themselves and their abilities, and they also believe in living life to the fullest!
Here’s the bottom line: You can choose to shift this. It won't happen over night, but with some effort, commitment and someone in your corner supporting you and holding you accountable, it can be done.
Self-confidence: Do you want it?
It’s one thing to know if you feel and live your life with confidence. It’s an entirely different thing to know you may not – but want to. Do you want to trust yourself? Do you want to feel a sense of calm and clarity when you are faced with making decisions in your life, at work, and in your relationships? In all of the areas that are affected by having and living with confidence?
There are two main things that contribute to self-confidence: self-efficacy and self-esteem.
We gain a sense of self-efficacy when we see ourselves mastering skills and achieving goals that matter in those skill areas. This is the confidence that, if we work hard in a particular area, we’ll succeed. It’s the type of confidence that leads people to accept difficult challenges and persist in the face of personal setbacks.
This overlaps with the idea of self-esteem, which is a more general sense of coping with what’s going on in our lives and that we have a right to be happy. This comes in part from feeling approval from the people around us (or not) which we may or may not be able to control. It also comes from the sense that we are behaving virtuously, that we are competent in what we are doing and that we can complete anything we set our minds to.
Some people believe that self-confidence can be built with positive affirmations and positive thinking. I believe that there’s some truth in this, but that it’s just as important to build self-confidence by setting goals and achieving them. Without building competence you don’t have confidence. There is nothing worse than having a shallow over-confidence, with all of the issues, upset, stress and failure that this brings.
So what do you do once you know you want it?
I’ll be the first to tell you there is no “quick fix” or one session cure all. What I can tell you is that building self-confidence is achievable, just as long as you have the determination to follow through. The other bonus to this process is that the things you do along the way to build self-confidence will also build great personal successes. Why? Because, your confidence will come from real self-achievement. No one can take that away from you!
So…here are the three steps to self-confidence.We’ll use as the analogy of a journey toward success:
Step 1 – Preparing for your journey
The first step involves getting ready for your journey. You need to be clear on where you are. You must think about where you want to go and get yourself in the right mind set for your journey. And finally, commit to sticking it out.
* Look at what you’ve already achieved
* Think about your strengths
* Think about what’s important to you and where you want to go
* Start managing your mind (defeat negative self-talk)
* Commit yourself to success
TIP: Self-confidence is about balance. Not being overly confident and not existing with low self-esteem. Getting this right is a matter of having the right amount of confidence, based on your ability. With the right amount of self-confidence you will be able to stretch yourself and to try even harder.
Step 2 – Setting Out
This is where you start, ever so slowly, moving towards your goal. By doing the right things, and starting with small, easy wins. You will put yourself on the path to success- and start building the self-confidence that comes with it.
* Build the knowledge you need to succeed
* Focus on the basics
* Set small goals
* Keep managing your mind (stay on top of that positive thinking!)
Step 3 – Accelerating towards success
By this step you’ll feel your self-confidence building. You will have worked through some of your Step 2 and you will NOW have plenty to celebrate! This is the time to start stretching yourself – making your goals bigger and the challenges a bit tougher. Increase the size of your commitment.
TIP: Keep yourself grounded. Stay the course and don’t become overly confident too quickly. As long as you keep on stretching yourself enough, but not too much, you will find your self-confidence building. You will also have earned your self-confidence because you will have put in the hard work necessary to be successful.
Self-confidence is extremely important in all aspects of your life and people who lack it find it extremely difficult to be happy.
Goal setting and being held accountable will become the foundation for all that you choose to achieve.
As always, you matter!
Big Love, Kristin