“Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit”E.E. Cummings
There is a power, an energy that comes from knowing who you are and having faith in your abilities as well as your potential. It’s no secret that people who are confident in themselves and their abilities magnetise friends, clients and opportunities with this energy. Psychologist Nathaniel Branden was the first to make the strong link between success and confidence. He argued that most Mental Health issues were rooted in poor self-esteem. This is also what I teach the most in my confidence-building workshops!
Self-esteem is linked to better health and overall mental well-being.
Confidence is also an important trait to grow when doing business. People want to deal with professional brokers or business owners, who know what they are doing and who can walk with them. It’s certainly an important piece of the puzzle in mental toughness.
So, how can we build our confidence? Here you have 5 sure ways of increasing your confidence so that you too can achieve peak performance.
Stock the confidence tank
Everyone has things that they are less confident doing. When we understand why this is the case, it helps us to highlight better where our strongholds lie. For one, if you don’t have the right set of skills for a job, it’s only natural that you will feel less confident doing it. Likewise, if you don’t have experience doing something, it makes sense that you wouldn’t feel 100% confident doing it!
One of the things that I often hear from the attendees of my confidence-building workshops is “I have no confidence at all” – but how can that be true? You may lack confidence in some aspects of your life, but there are always things that you can do naturally! Fill your cup while doing things you are good at – running, dancing, parenting, making barista coffee… anything!
Don’t downplay any of your achievements or awards, write them down and store them in a diary on your bedside table or on your computer. Read this when you feel low in confidence or unmotivated and boost your self-confidence instantly.
Do you have a comfort zone? Step out of it!
We all have our comfort zone, the place where we feel nice and relaxed and we do things on autopilot. And we usually stay inside our comfort zone out of fear of what is outside of it.
The first step to getting out of the comfort zone is to befriend fear itself. Fear is a natural reaction your brain has to keep you safe, a survival instinct that has been with human beings since the time of cavemen, that basically tells us there is something dangerous around! Invite this feeling in, accept it, and thank your brain for the alert. There is no tiger running after you, and you are safe.
Many sportsmen and performers use this increased adrenaline to their advantage and to increase their performance, and enter the peak zone.
As you accept this fear, feel it and “do it anyway”. The world is your oyster. Sign up for a 5km run, or learn how to speak in public. Start dancing classes or finally learn a new language. It will initially feel scary, but the benefits will far outweigh the initial fears.
Oftentimes progress is achieved with a lot of small steps that add up to one very big one. It’s hard to choose consistency and a slow pace because we get caught up with amazing stories of entrepreneurs who became a huge success overnight. What is often unseen are the small risks they took over a long period of time that eventually paid off. This is another fact I teach at my confidence-building workshops.
Nudging ourselves little by little into areas of discomfort while cheering ourselves on adds to our confidence slowly but firmly. We begin to trust ourselves. Knowing that pain and discomfort are also our friends.
Practice, apply, assess and modify.
I genuinely believe that when we utilize, we internalize. What does this mean? That as you step out of your comfort zone, and gain new skills, you will naturally increase your confidence. But it’s also important that you practice those skills. And as you keep practicing them and becoming more self-assured by applying them, take a step back. Assess your performance and your ability as well as how confident you feel, and make any adjustment or modification to it. This is a great cycle of improvement which in turn increases your self-confidence.
Keep following it – practice the skill or ability, apply it to your daily life or in your work, take a step back to assess your performance, decide any changes, and modify them. This is a useful methodology for your confidence building!
Use Affirmations to boost your Confidence
Affirmations are incredibly powerful to build confidence. Research suggests that certain neural pathways are increased with self-affirmation. Use the power of your own voice to guide you and empower you to become more confident. Find quotes, writings, poems or simple affirmations that resonate with you and that would turn any fear into fuel.
Here are some of my favourite ones:
I believe and I will achieve.
Boundless confidence infuses my soul; I am strong, powerful and bold.
Everything happens for a reason. I appreciate it all.
I forgive myself for not being perfect because I am human.
Every day, in every way, I go towards my goals.
You can say your affirmations at any time during the day. Many people find it useful to start their day with affirmations. I still find myself saying affirmations just before I jump on stage or run a workshop!
Building your self-confidence is the work of a lifetime, and we should always be looking to optimize it, whether it is by affirmations or attending confidence-building workshops. Being confident will not just make you more successful in business, but also in your personal life. Growing your confidence is a key ingredient in reaching peak performance at work, magnetizing the right clients to your portfolio, and leading a healthier, happier, life.