There is one thing that we all struggle with—confidence. We may feel that overall this isn’t an issue, but if we are truly honest with ourselves, there are days and situations where our confidence wanes. Public speaking, networking, pitching a promotion, taking a test, interviewing, asking for help, sharing our feelings and confrontation are just a few of those situations where our confidence may be shaken.
While there is no simple solution or secret trick to feeling confident at all times, there are certain strategies to help you feel more confident on a regular basis and be able to muster confidence when you really need it most. Check them out.
- Build A Good Reputation. This is actually quite easy. You’re in control of how you want to be perceived by the world and if you strive to consistently make positive impressions and build trust, then people will support you no matter what. Take this example: Say that you are going on an interview for a new job within your organization. If the decision makers know you’re a hard worker, stay above the fray, follow up and follow through, then you should feel confident that you are poised for success. It’s simple things really. Take promises. If you’re one of those individuals who is always promising that you’ll do something but rarely follows through, trust is broken. If you fail to return calls or emails or get caught up in water cooler gossip, your reputation is marred. You can repair and build a great career reputation, and having one will give you the confidence that people trust you, want to engage with you, believe in you and want to support you in your success.
- Ask The “What Ifs?” What if this didn’t work out? What if you made a mistake? What if you weren’t perfect? What if others laughed at you? This type of self-doubt is inviting your inner critic into your world. You can’t fight your inner critic, but you can manage it and yes, even embrace it. It’s got positive sides to it too. Sometimes (but not always) looking at the “what ifs” can help you put things into perspective. Remember, things happen for a reason and the worst case scenario may not always be as bad as it seems. These “what if” questions are designed to help you navigate the possibilities, explore cautionary approaches and of course, urge you to come prepared.
- Always Be Prepared. No matter what circumstance may come your way—presentations, networking, dating (yeah, seriously)—if you take time in advance to prepare your mind, spirit and approach, you will feel much more confident. Winging it works sometimes, but preparation will ease your anxiety tremendously.
- Don’t Rely On False Confidence. This sounds strange, but bear with me. Today there are a lot of people who are incredibly “confident.” While I applaud and admire their ability to continually share their greatness, it is often times a mask for fear. If you don’t believe me, just take a look at social media. My point is that while these individuals, you and yes, me, all have great qualities, if we overload our beliefs and others with the story that we are invincible and beyond reproach, we can be hurt deeply when things don’t go our way. Instead, dig deep into the fundamental core of your greatness and continue to use these strengths as your energy source for confidence. Despite what some people say, no one is great at everything. But the things you are really great at, your gifts, are the reason you are here on this earth and the reason you should feel confident in any situation.
- Recalling Past Successes. You’ve already been in many situations where you’ve felt confident, or even if you didn’t, you’ve succeeded. These experiences are part of your story and these wins are there to remind you that you are capable of doing so many times again. Recalling past successes is a great way to feel confident and goes far to help you bolster the courage you need to try. Whether you win or fail, you’ve tried and that is huge. So many people quit way before they get to the starting line. But not you. That is what confidence is all about.
- Believe In Yourself. If you don’t believe you can do it, no one else will. Sure, that requires confidence in the first place, but remember, you have confidence or you wouldn’t be at this doorstep in the first place. Now it’s time to muster it up and use that energy source to gently guide you through any situation that comes your way.
Trust me. You’ve got this!
I would love to hear your strategies for mustering confidence. This community is designed to support the overall health and wellness of busy career professionals so if you are wiling to share, we can all benefit from your inspiration and wisdom.
Kim Monaghan, PCC, RYT, CPBS is the owner of KBM Coaching & Consulting LLC, a boutique Human Resources Consulting and Career Coaching Firm serving a national clientele.