You’ve got a strong desire to up your game and show up big. But for some reason, you’re having a hard time mustering up the courage to challenge yourself in new ways.
You’re enjoying the comfort and predictability of your routine schedule. If that’s true, then why does the whisper inside you keep telling you it’s time, time to explore new territory.
I know, I’ve been there too.
It’s impossible to challenge yourself and take risks when you’re feeling doubtful about your abilities. The first step in creating change in any area of your life is to reconnect with and develop your confidence.
When you feel confident is when you’ll be able to create the changes you want in your life so you can feel excited about waking up in the morning. Without it, life will be tedious, unfulfilling, and dull.
Today I’ll be giving you 4 keys you can start using right away to start building your confidence so you can go out there and get what you really want in life and in business.
1. Strive for Continuous Improvement
A recent study found that when it comes to job promotions, women apply when they feel 100% competent for the job. Men, on the other hand, apply when they feel 60% competent.
Pretty shocking right?
If perfection is your standard, you’ll never be fully confident because you’ve set the bar to an impossible level, a point where you will consistently feel inadequate.
When predicting success, confidence is more important than competence.
Pursuing perfection is one of the most detrimental things a woman can do to undermine her confidence.
Strive for continuous improvement, instead of perfection.
As a business owner, if I waited until everything I created was perfect, I wouldn’t release or do anything! I generally aim for 80% because not only is 80% more than good enough, in most cases, releasing my work enables me to start developing mastery AND move on to what’s next.
Done is better than perfect.
2. Think Positively
Women, much more than men, spend far too much time second-guessing themselves and reflecting on every conversation, interaction, decision, etc. This tendency to reflect and find fault in our own behavior creates negative thought patterns that block self-confidence and as a result, block us from moving forward in our lives and achieving all we are meant to achieve.
In order to build confidence, women have to start thinking more positively about themselves and their abilities.
Turning your focus to more positive thinking and acknowledging your strengths and accomplishments is an important step in developing self-confidence.
A positive mindset builds confidence.
A few months ago I had a writing project I needed to do that intimidated the heck out me. Writing anything tends to make me nervous. I was so anxious about my abilities, or lack thereof, and fearful about failing that I had to take a whole day of self-care (yoga, mani/pedi, extra special cultural event, and plenty of rest) before I could even think about it without freaking out.
Finally I said to myself, “get it together!” It’s a writing project for goodness sake. You’ve done way more complicated things than write some copy. I thought about everything I’ve accomplished to get to where I’m at now – all my past successes and all the things I’m really good at – and wrote them all down. “I Can’t” quickly turned into “You Got This!” Now, when I look at the copy I wrote I think “wow, I did it!”
Appreciating your strengths and achievements nurtures self-confidence.
3. Leave Your Comfort Zone
In order for you to build more confidence, you must move out of your comfort zone and try new things. You can only grow if you’re willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable as you explore unknown territory. The reward? Confidence.
All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.
The trick is to start simple. Trying one new small thing will give you confidence to try something else. For example, try a new fitness class, visit a new coffee shop, visit your local hobby store and buy an art kit, try a new recipe. Continue trying new things and notice how it motivates you to try something else. As you increase the risk in your endeavors, you become more confident in the process.
Not letting fear stop you, is essential in building your confidence.
I had a dream for many years to travel to Europe solo. Truth was; I was scared. Finally, I got up the nerve to dip my toe into International solo traveling by starting small. I planned 3 solo days in Amsterdam before I joined a travel group to continue on to Luxembourg and Belgium.
Prior to the trip, I was nervous all the way up to getting on the plane. Once I was on my way, all the nerves disappeared. Turns out, it was invigorating being in a foreign city solo and finding my way around and doing all the things I had dreamed of doing in a city I had been wanting to visit for so long. I can’t wait to raise the bar on my next travel adventure!
When was the last time you did something that scared you?
4. Repeat Often
Neuroscience tells us that we can all rewire our brains, even as adults. When we change our thinking and develop new mental habits, that effort creates physical changes in our brains.
Scientific studies about resilience, a quality related to confidence, are leaning toward the same idea, that resilience can also be created by simply training our brains.
Methods of thinking can carve new pathways in our adult brains, pathways that encourage resilience, or confident thinking, and that then become part of our hard-wiring.
There’s power and science in positive thinking.
The Keys to Success
Developing confidence is a marathon, not a sprint. Progress is made in incremental ways over time. There no time like the present to get started!
- Strive for Continuous Improvement. Pursuing perfection is one of the most detrimental things a woman can do to undermine her confidence. Done is better than perfect.
- Think Positively. When we believe the negative voices in our mind, they hold us back from accomplishing all we’re meant to achieve in our lives. A positive mindset builds confidence.
- Leave Your Comfort Zone. Life gets boring when you stay within the limits of what you already know. Just do it!
- Repeat Often. Confident people have a growth mindset and self-belief that they can make something happen. How do they do it? Practice!
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Sandra is a business and life coach who specializes in helping clients who are craving a change but feel stuck where they are. Sandra helps them discover a new vision of the future and follow through on their ideas with enthusiasm and confidence. With a diverse background that spans more than three decades, Sandra combines her educator’s perspective, business acumen, life coaching skills, and everything she’s learned along the way to help her clients make bold moves that advance them forward in their careers and in their lives. When she’s not working, Sandra loves practicing yoga, traveling, cultural experiences, and enjoying the desert southwest.