BEHOLD! The elephant in the room…
Let me get right to the point.
The topic of self-confidence is something most entrepreneurs and business owners don’t want to talk about.
It’s the elephant in the room so to speak.
Because when you’re out there representing or presenting your business, you need to show up big and confident. But let’s face it, unfortunately …you are human.
You’re like me and everybody else. Every once in a while you get tripped up by spotty self-confidence.
And guess what….
It’s totally OK.
Confidence is a funny thing; it can come and go as life’s events unfold.
A couple of tough blows stacked on top of each other and our confidence can be shaken. If it’s shaken hard enough, it can be difficult (but not impossible) to get back.
And as you’ve probably experienced, confidence is generally not consistent across all areas of your life or business. You might be super confident in certain aspects of your business that allow you to drive it forward, but that confidence might not translate fully into all areas you need it to or when you need it to. That same strong business confidence might not translate into your social life and vice versa.
But before we dive into how to build your self-confidence…
What is self-confidence anyway?
Self-confidence is the oil that smoothly turns the wheels of the relationships between you, your capabilities –that is, your natural talents, skills and potential-and your ability to realize those capabilities. – Martin Perry
Being confident means feeling positive about what you can do and not worrying about what you can’t do – but having the will to learn.
True confidence is about embodying a steady, calm, knowing trust in yourself and in your ability to take action towards what you want.
Think about it…
With higher self-confidence you have a more positive attitude; you are happier, have higher self-esteem, better health, more energy and more drive to accomplish your goals. You feel stronger, mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally.
Self-confidence allows you to be bolder, more imaginative and have more fun.
With higher self-confidence, you aren’t afraid to ask for what you want in your business and life or take the action necessary to manifest it.
You’re right …That level of empowering self-confidence is built by leaving your comfort zone.
Your comfort zone is the place where you already feel some level of self-confidence, a level of knowing and a sense of security.
Think of it this way, being self-confident is a lot like being comfortable. You know the rules. You know how to act. You know how your desired result will happen and when it will happen.
You are confident that if you do X you will obtain Y.
But how did you get here? How did you get comfortable? How did you become self-confident in this space?
Well, when you were young, you consistently and repeatedly left your comfort zone. You branched out and did things you didn’t know how to do without a guaranteed outcome.
You essentially took risks and gained confidence.
From the very beginning, you’ve been trying A LOT of new things like: walking, talking, playing, running, sledding, sports of all kinds, learning new subjects, new work skills, new jobs, etc. The list is very, very long. Trying new things is a part of growing up, aging, advancing our careers, developing personally and about manifesting what we really want out of our time on planet Earth.
But after years of stepping out of your comfort zone and taking risks you’ve gotten to a place where you can do most of the things you want to do, get by and be reasonably happy and reasonably fulfilled.
You got comfy. You can move throughout your day with confidence because you know how to do what you need to and be good at it which makes you feel good about yourself.
But somewhere along the line you made the decision to become a business owner. That in itself takes a lot of self-confidence.
However, building a successful business is always more difficult than we imagine it will be. And even though you probably started a business based on a skill set you excel at and are confident in, running a successful business means tackling a bunch of stuff you have no idea how to do.
Stuff you don’t have any self-confidence in.
And you quickly learn…
As an entrepreneur, success doesn’t come by staying comfy
You want to own a business you are proud of and live a life you are excited about so lets get to it.
How to increase your self-confidence so you can go out there and crush the things that are preventing you from obtaining your ultimate vision for your business and life.
7 Simple Steps to Build Your Self-Confidence
- Be honest with yourself. Is low self-confidence preventing you from taking the action you need to accomplish your business goals?
Low self-confidence can often sneakily disguise itself as procrastination or avoidance of work you need to do. So if there is important work you keep putting off or pushing to the side, your low self-confidence could be the culprit.
- Understand why you need to do the work low self-confidence is preventing you from doing.
In most instances, what you are trying to accomplish should tie into your bigger, longer term plan for your business and life… aka your Brilliant Obsession. Because, if it isn’t tied into something bigger you’re unlikely to do what makes you uncomfortable and frankly it probably isn’t worth your time.
- Break it down.
What smaller components are you already confident in doing? Rely on these skills and confidence first. Remember this is just a different situation or application. What’s left? Are there any individual elements that are making you nervous or causing fear? (see this post about overcoming your fear)
- Set a goal and make a plan to accomplish it. Keep it this plan simple. Don’t over think it.
- Take action. Push yourself through your discomfort and potential fear.
- Assess how it went. Be gentle and don’t judge yourself too harshly.
What went well? What didn’t go so well? What will you do differently next time?
- Repeat, repeat, repeat. As you know, you are most confident in the things you do most often.
Remember, big accomplishments are made my making micro commitments, taking immediate right action on those micro commitments and then repeating the process.
As Thoreau once said…
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you imagined.
Images courtesy: David Blackwell, Aldon Hynes