Confidence – The Road To Freedom
Think of the last time you wanted to do something, but didn’t have the confidence to try. Were you disappointed? If you said yes, you are not alone. One of the biggest areas for self-improvement in our professional and personal lives is confidence. In a survey of 1,022 people conducted by Uncommon Knowledge, Limited, results revealed that 61% cited self-confidence as a problem. This type of survey result is very common among other studies.
Confidence is a basic human need. It impacts how we think, feel, and act. To heighten your self confidence, consider adopting these strategies:
1. Define self-confidence for yourself. Here is a start: Self-confidence is a state of mind where one feels at-ease with every aspect of existence. It is the ability to cope, develop, grow, and achieve. It is a belief in one’s self-worth. Everyone needs to define their own self-confidence. Start by finishing this sentence: For me, self-confidence is. . .
2. Understand why self-confidence is important to you. This understanding comes when one can articulate the ‘why.’ By answering this question, you can begin to define how far along you are in achieving it. For example, one may say self-confidence is important because it enables him/her to perform well at work. Or it enables an individual to develop close relationships. Everyone can agree with those statements, but it isn’t really important until you attach personal meaning to it. Here is your personal meaning: Self-confidence is important to me because. . .
3. What have you missed recently because of your lack of confidence? Was it applying for a new job, not participating in a social event, or missing the opportunity to meet someone new? We miss out on so many things that life has to offer when we don’t even try. Remember that making mistakes is healthy and often times fruitful. If we didn’t make mistakes, we would never become better. Even those with extremely high confidence make mistakes. They also learn from them. Be honest with yourself. “My lack (regardless of how little bit) of self-confidence has caused me to miss. . .”
4. Now the real work begins. This is central to building confidence. What would you do differently if you were more confident? It could be in any area of your life. Whatever that ‘something’ is, put it in writing: “If I had as much self-confidence as I wanted, I would. . .”• List the benefits to be derived from doing that ‘something.’
- List the benefits to be derived from doing that ‘something.’
- List the fears you have around doing it.
- Most importantly, list a counter strategy to overcome the fear.
A final word on fear – it is natural to be fearful. Fear keeps us safe. However, it also paralyzes us. The ability to confront our fears builds strength and confidence. Most fears can be confronted. It takes fortitude, patience, and planning.
With new found confidence, you will be more courageous and comfortable in many social situations. More opportunities will come your way. And that’s worth a lot.
About the author:
Diane Allen, PCC is a professional certified coach, leadership development consultant and founder of the Strategic Leadership Academy (www.strategicleadershipacademy.com). She has spent the past twelve years helping senior leaders and middle managers create success by building their personal and organizational leadership skills. For a complimentary copy of our e-course “Building Confidence & Credibility, please send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org and put “confidence e-course” in the subject line.