Is low self-confidence contributing to you not achieving your work or life goals? When we held MYOB Courses in our Sydney Training Centres I remember speaking to a lot of mums who were returning to the workforce after a long absence while they were looking after their kids. Lack of confidence was one of the major topics that came up. It was like a whole lifetime had passed since they left the workforce and their lack of confidence was stopping them from finding work.
The same is true for business owners. I was recently speaking to a business coach who has helped many small business owners start and grow their businesses, including bookkeeping businesses. We are very happy to have Di Brown as a contributing specialist so read on to discover some insights about confidence and reaching your goals.
Is lack of confidence holding you back?
By Di Brown
Are you one of the many people whose lack of confidence is holding them back, keeping them stuck or stopping them from making a career change they desperately want?
How many times have you heard someone say, ‘I will do it when I feel more confident?’ The truth is, the only way you are going to become more confident is by doing it. In her book Feel the Fear and do it Anyway, Susan Jeffers states that you are never going to get rid of fear. Even the most successful and confident people feel fear. The only difference is that they ‘feel the fear and do it anyway’. Eventually through repetition and experience it does get easier and you do become more competent and confident.
We all started out with confidence, it is inside every human being. For example when babies attempt to walk for the first time, there is no hesitation about what they want to do. There is no worry about falling because they know exactly what to do when it happens. Stand up and do it again! We were all babies once with the confidence to learn to walk and go for what we wanted.
The action of doing
It’s in the action of ‘doing’ that confidence grows! Do you remember when you first learnt to drive a car? I do! It was a new experience and a bit scary; there were so many different things to remember. There was the brake, accelerator, clutch and gears, speedometer and blinkers. I don’t know about you but when it was time to change lanes, I even had to remember to keep the steering wheel straight when I looked over my shoulder. There were quite a few occasions when I turned my head to make sure it was safe that the steering wheel would come with me. I wasn’t very confident at all.
Well eventually I did get the hang of it. I don’t have to consciously think about how to drive any more. I feel completely competent and confident. Sometimes the car somehow gets home by itself! The way I became confident at driving was by doing it. If I waited until I felt more confident learn, I would probably still be catching the bus.
[quote]In our MYOB training courses our training workbooks contain case studies with exercises you can perform to increase your confidence.[/quote]
Confidence is within each and every one of us. Although in some of us it is just allowed to lay dormant. When our confidence lays dormant it can stop us from going after and getting what we want in life and business. It allows self-doubt to creep in which then allows fear to rule our desires and decisions. Imagine if we allowed self-doubt to win, we would probably still be crawling and catching the bus.
Confidence is positive
Low confidence can often manifest itself as negativity – seeing the glass as half empty, doubting ourselves and often making excuses. Whereas confident people are usually positive – seeing the glass as half full, they believe in themselves and their abilities, and they believe in living life to the full.
Is your confidence awake and thriving or asleep and inactive? If you don’t feel very confident, it’s time to wake up what is rightfully yours and choose to use it.
One way to awaken your confidence is by ‘acting as if’ you are already confident. It may feel a little strange at first but with time it will come naturally. There are many ways you can show confidence. You can change your behaviour, your body language, how you speak, what you say, and how you think.
When you think about someone who is confident ask yourself: –
- Do they make excuses or do they do whatever it takes?
- Are their postures straight and upright or are they slumped over?
- Is their language direct and full with certainty or are they wishy washy?
- Are they doubting themselves or thinking about completing the task at hand?
Whatever it is you would like to do, ‘just do it!’ Before you know it, your competence and confidence will show up just in time for you to take on your next adventure.