Do you remember those situations when you thought “I wish I had said that...” or “I wish I submitted that application…” or “I wish I had the courage to be more of who I truly am rather than doing what they expected me to do”?
We all were experiencing these situations which contribute to self-doubt and ultimately having lower self-confidence. Let me tell you that if you met me in my 20s, you would not recognise the shy person who was afraid of other people’s opinion and did not have much success at work or relationships. Moving forward 15 years and the word self-confidence has a different meaning in my life which is why I would like to share with you 3 strategies on how to become more confident.
"Confidence" comes from the Latin word fidere, "to trust." To be self-confident means to trust in oneself, it is the belief that “I can do it because I am equal to the task”. What you may not realise is that “self-efficacy” feeds self-confidence by imposing that “I can do it as I have done it before”. Self-efficacy is specific and past related and as self-efficacy increases, the state of self-confidence improves as it is built over time. So for example if you speak out loud your opinion 3 times in a row on the Zoom meeting with your team, you will build a belief that you can speak up 4th time as well. And because of that you build self-confidence that you can speak at the team meetings.
What I am about to share with you are 3 major elements we need to cover first if we want to speak and move to another level of self-confidence.
First is the basic pattern that you probably know and that is: your beliefs influence your thoughts, your thoughts influence your emotions and your emotions influence your behaviour and the things you have or do not have in life.
The second part is that you can change any belief you have in life using dedicated time and taking action.
The last part is “fear” or “feeling afraid” which is a deeply rooted and the strongest emotion we can ever feel and it is usually present when we are trying to do something new.
So how can you be more confident at your work or relationships?
- The first thing is to be aware of your thoughts. How can you do it? Through meditation, prayer, learning, checking with yourself during the day what you think and how you feel by setting reminders. Other ideas are journaling because writing out your thoughts is a powerful way to learn more of what and when you think.
- Once you identify and become more familiar with your thoughts, you can start reprogramming your subconscious mind. The complex and probably the most profound is work by Dr. Joe Dispenza. If you are just starting, an exercise from Lisa Nichols can help. Equally videos from Marie Forleo and Marisa Peer are all good choices. It is possible to change your belief system you have developed by living in a particular family, community and society. Also it is important to remember that it is much easier to change yourself if you surround yourself with people you want to become because the constant exposure will speed up your transformation. So for example if I wanted to lose some weight, I started exercising with a trainer online, going to the gym, weighing myself weekly, talking with people about healthy food, cooking etc.
- The last one is allowing yourself to express your feelings and thoughts more than it is comfortable, so in other works, be more courageous. In order to do it you need to do two things: believe that you're worth it and push yourself each time one more step. So working through that current comfort through discomfort to another level of comfort and so on. And as Brendon Burchard refers to as “confidence and competence loop”, you need these both to correlate and support each other.
You may be wondering why I have not mentioned motivation. I tend to think about motivation as “my why”, what is my motive for doing certain things. At the same time, you can first take action and with that comes more motivation. Isn’t that true?
I wish there was, but there is nothing like “overnight confidence”. Confidence is like a muscle that you build each and every day in various situations. You can remind yourself, how confident were you when you were 20 years old, 30 years old or later, right? So even if you probably will not be a Michelin restaurant chef or TEDx speaker the next day, once you start working on these 3 strategies and you set them as priority in your life, you will achieve what you want much faster. And I will be happy to assist you with that transformation.