FuelStop: Six Secrets to Boosting Self-Confidence
Whether you’re starting a new job or a seasoned leader, launching your first business or your tenth, we all have moments of insecurity or self-doubt. Here’s how to push past them and build your self-confidence.
Don’t hold yourself back.
KNOCK OUT DOUBT with our Six Stout Secrets To Boost Self-Confidence
➊ Get To Know Yourself
As Leo Babauta of Zen Habits puts it: “When going into battle, the wisest general learns to know his enemy very well. When you’re trying to build self-confidence, your enemy is often yourself. So get to know yourself well.”
Gather your negative inner thoughts and write them down. Then make yourself list the positives- things you can do well, qualities you like about yourself, etc. Compare your lists and recognize areas that truly need work and what are simply artificial fears or limitations YOU have put on yourself. Arm yourself with a mental fly swatter to squash false negatives when they pop up and act with a realistic positive picture of yourself at the front of your mind.
➋ Get Feedback From Others
Outside validation can be effective in both building confidence and ensuring your internal picture matches your external actions. Ask someone who cares about your development and the quality of your performance to offer entirely truthful feedback. Allow yourself the boost from positive commentary and be willing to acknowledge and act on suggested areas of growth. (more on that next)
➌ Gather Knowledge…And Be Willing To Learn
Confident people are willing to acknowledge that they don’t — and can’t — know everything. They are not afraid to ask for help and seek expertise in others to fill in gaps. Be honest with yourself about what you know and where you need to grow. An ability and willingness to learn shows both confidence and agility.
➍ Recognize Your Value
In the words of Katie Orenstein, founder and director of The OpEd Project, “Instead of agonizing about what others might think of you or your work, concentrate on the unique perspective you bring. When you realize your value to others, confidence is no longer about self-promotion. It’s about purpose.”
➎ Practice, Practice Practice
Deliberate practice will almost always trump natural aptitude, so don’t give up on a task you struggle with. If you are unsure about your ability to do something — speak in front of large audience, negotiate with a tough customer — start by trying out the skills in a safe setting. Practice really does make perfect (or at least well done), so keep trying!
➏ Get Out of Your Own Way
“Try things you don’t think you can do. Failure can be very useful for building confidence.” says Deborah H. Gruenfeld, Co-Director of the Executive Program for Women Leaders at Stanford Graduate School of Business. (Check out Michael Jordan’s “Secret To Victory” for more on that) Embrace new opportunities and take risks to prove to yourself (and others) that you are up to the challenge of doing difficult things.
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