Jim Rees aka the Emotional Intelligence Guru and Author of Vicious Cycle reveals how we can boost our self esteem and find our inner confidence
Ever been ready to deliver a talk or speech to find that somewhere between sitting down and standing up, you’ve lost your confidence thanks to all the eyes and ears waiting to hear your speech?
There will be plenty of occasions where we’re desperate for our confidence to show up and give us that boost we need, and you’re certainly not alone if it goes missing from time to time.
As a coach, when someone tells me they’ve lost their confidence, I jokingly ask where they left it, or if they remember when they last had it.
But all jokes aside, there are some simple things you can do to find and keep your inner confidence…
Confidence is not a physical thing, and therefore, it’s impossible for it to be ‘lost’.
The first step to overcome the feeling you’ve lost your confidence is to become aware of this very fact. Your confidence is not lost, you’re having trouble accessing it.
Being aware of your coping mechanisms is often the first step to help you feel confident when going into any situation, so start by noticing what things you’re putting off or talking yourself out of.
A good way to understand what you might be putting off, or avoiding is by asking your partner or a close friend to give you feedback. This can help you to address blind spots you may be unconscious of and that may yield some awareness for you.
Belief in yourself is truly the key to inner and outer confidence. The great thing about our beliefs, is that there are two types of beliefs – ‘Empowering Belief’ or ‘Limiting Belief’.
These beliefs will drive how we feel about a task or a goal that we are pursuing, which in turn will have an impact on the outcome.
For example, if you have a ‘Limiting Belief’ about your ability to save ten per cent of your salary each month, that will impact your attitude towards saving, which will result in you not being able to put some money aside each month.
This then becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy, proving to yourself that it’s not possible to save ten per cent of your salary.
Believing that you can and empowering yourself to do so, will have an impact on whether it’s possible or not.
Self-belief will get you far.
What’s your story?
Our beliefs are woven into our story about what we think is possible for us in our lives.
We may believe that we’re really great at doing a presentation to a small group of work colleagues or our team, but then will struggle with the idea of doing the same talk to 200 people at the company conference.
Using the previous example of saving money, it could be that the story you’re telling yourself is that you’ve always been terrible at saving money, which then sabotages your ability to save each month.
When you tap into the story you are telling yourself, you’ll find some of the blockers that will be preventing you from moving towards your goals.
Identifying these blockers and working out the stories you’re telling yourself can help you to break cycles which may be negatively impacting you or affecting your confidence.
Taking away the fancy, long word, affirmations are all about our internal dialog, the conversation that we have with ourselves which then becomes part of our story.
So, we need to pay attention to that internal dialog and to what we’re reaffirming to ourselves daily.
If you’re getting ready to do something which is out of your comfort zone and giving you a crisis of confidence, using some powerful affirmations could help.
Instead of thinking negatively, tell yourself something positive and think of the excitement and sense of accomplishment you will feel when you’ve completed what you set out to do.
For example, if it’s a presentation at work, tell yourself the audience are going to love it, tell yourself how excited you are to share this with the company and that you’re the expert in this field.
If you’re looking to achieve something you’ve not attempted previously, find someone that you can use as a role model, you don’t have to know them personally, a YouTube search will suffice.
To enhance your confidence, find out what good looks like and then go and replicate it for yourself.
Another useful technique is to think about all the occasions when you’ve stepped up to try something new and smashed it.
Draw upon these memories as a reminder that with good preparation and practice you will be able to achieve this new challenge you are facing.
Don’t ever do things by halves. The old saying, ‘If something is worth doing, then it’s worth doing well’, is true and repeating this phrase can empower you and create a sense of inner confidence for ultimate success.
Committing to something is about leaning into the goal or new skill you’re looking to achieve or acquire.
Ultimately, it’s taking 100 per cent responsibility for doing everything you can to move in the right direction and get this done to your highest standards.
Over the years I have coached 1,000’s of people and have seen on numerous occasions those how have failed before achieving their goals, and it’s always down to the lack of their commitment to seeing it all the way through to completion.
And finally, if a curve ball knocks you off your feet, then ask the following questions so you can stay focused on achieving a positive outcome:
- What could be good about this?
- What’s not perfect yet?
- How can I turn this around?
- What can I learn from this?
- What do I need to change?
For more tips and strategies on how to achieve your goals and setting your goals, get a copy of Vicious Cycle at www.theeiguru.com