Confidence is a key ingredient to achieving everything we want from our lives, both personally and professionally.
It enables us to confidently talk to clients, to perform our daily tasks, to walk around with our head held high and be comfortable being the person we are.
Self-confidence is not only felt by you, but it’s also spotted by others, by your body language, by how you hold and conduct yourself.
If you could read the thoughts of a confident person, they would be saying, “I’m comfortable with who I am, I respect and am at ease with myself and I expect to be treated with respect.”
With confidence comes assertiveness, knowing your boundaries, communicating them and setting expectations of how you want and need to be treated.
Confidence isn’t something we are born with. We have to learn the skills and techniques to firstly know what we want and then how to go and get it.
Not everyone is confident about everything all the time, but we can all learn to be more confident.
Building confidence begins with identifying your goal, reflecting on where you are now in relation to that and identifying the steps you need to take to move forward, the skills you already have and the skills you need to practice.
Practice, practice, practice is then the key to building your confidence.
Many people say to me that they don’t know how I can stand up and lecture in front of 100 people or run a workshop for a day, that there is no way they could do this.
I specifically remember being in a workshop when I first started thinking exactly the same thing. The person running the course exuded confidence and I was in awe. My friend sitting next to me knocked my elbow and said, “You could do this”, and I honestly thought no way, how could I do that.
But then a few years down the line, lots of practice, lots of feedback, lots of lessons learnt and I am more confident and, more importantly, I really enjoy standing up there talking, teaching techniques that I have learnt and that have made a big difference to me.
I’m not always confident but I am happy being me and I know what I need to do feel more confident.
If I can do it, overcome my fears, then you can do it too.
Here are a few tips to help you unlock your potential. When confidence is high anything is possible.
- Become aware of your inner voice. When you are about to attempt something new that could be a little scary, are you your own critic or cheerleader? Focusing on the negatives is not very helpful. Encourage yourself to find the positives in the situation, encourage yourself like you would a child or friend that you truly believed in. Be kind to yourself and you can do it!
- Imagine yourself looking confident and self assured, how would you stand? Notice your posture and your facial expression. Just walking into a room with good posture can create an immediate effect. Not only does good posture look good, it makes you feel good too.
- Be interested in other people. Being confident isn’t about talking about yourself, it’s having the confidence to be interested in others and not feel that you have to prove your worth by telling people how great you are. To be interesting, be interested. It’s amazing how much pressure it takes off of you when you become interested in others.
True confidence is not always knowing that something is going to go well, it’s knowing that whatever the outcome you will be able to deal with it.