CONFIDENCE IS JUST LIKE A MUSCLE, YOU NEED TO WORK ON IT TO MAKE IT STRONGER
The word confidence comes from the Latin word CONFIDERE which means to have full trust – full trust in what you do despite the outcome.
I hear the confidence thing thrown around quite a bit “I wish I had more confidence in that”, “I’ve lost confidence”, “I just need to be more confident”, these phrases are often used interchangeably depending on what’s happening around us. It not until you start to dig a bit deeper that you realise what confidence means to you and how it affects what we do.
Confidence is just like a muscle and the more that you work on it, the stronger it will become. A muscle is made up of a kind of elastic tissue and each muscle consists of thousands of small muscle fibres, so you can imagine it’s a magnificent complicated thing. For me and the clients I work with confidence is just like a muscle made of varying different elements and it can be complicated; once you know how it works you can focus on the fibre you want to make stronger.
REMEMBER: Confidence is not about what we can & can’t do but what we THINK and BELIEVE we can & can’t do.
It can be quite a transient thing confidence, coming and going over the years, the situations we find ourselves in. Some people are more confident than others, some are confident in some situations but not in others. Even though I spend a lot of time talking about confidence, I haven’t always been confident and I’m not confident all the time, I’m more confident in certain situations than in others. Over the years, I’ve learned tips & techniques that help me to manage my confidence levels and keep in it check.
My coaching is all focused on confidence, clients who I have worked with have come to me because a lack of confidence, in whatever form for them, has underpinned their overall issue or goal. This isn’t a cowering in the corner kind of confidence, they are awesome people running their own businesses or in senior leadership positions, this is confidence that holds them back.
There’s lots of stuff out there about confidence and how you can be more confident, but I wanted to find a way or a model to help my clients find a way forward that was more specific to them and their needs, so I developed the ‘Enrichment Confidence Cycle’.
This helps my clients work on the segment of the confidence muscle that is most relevant for them. All segments in the Enrichment Confidence Cycle are interlinked and can be focused on independently but ultimately by working on each one they ENRICH each other.
So let me take you through it:
CLARITY –Work on understanding what confidence looks like for you and once you are clear on this you know which areas you need to work on you find your place to start.
Stop for a moment & think about a time where you felt really confident maybe an 8, 9 or 10 (out of a scale of 10), it might be in a work situation or a home one or even in the pub! Ask yourself what was happening in that time? What were you doing? How did you feel? What were you saying? Who was there? Think about everything that related to that situation.
Once you have CLARITY about this time where you felt most confident, you can identify YOT – Your One Thing – the one thing that you can take from that situation to help you in the situations where you feel less confident. Make a mental note to pull it out of your back pocket and use it when you need it.
COURAGE – The next segment is all about TAKING ACTION, now you have clarity in order to build your confidence you will need to take action. Courage builds a feeling of mastery and it’s this mastery feeling that helps to build confidence.
In most cases FEAR is what stops us from taking action – fear of the unknown, fear of judgement, fear of it going wrong, the what if’s… BUT what if we decided to just acknowledge the fear is there and just go for it anyway? You can’t banish fear, our brains simply don’t work like that. You can acknowledge the fear and by doing so you take away some of its power.
Sooner or later if you TAKE ACTION something is going to work for you. If you act, it might not go the way you wanted, but if you don’t act, you’ll never succeed. Inaction roughly has a 0% success rate!
YOT – Your One Thing can help you with COURAGE – pull it from your back pocket and use it when you need that SHOT of COURAGE
CONFIDENCE – This word will mean different things to everyone reading this. Once you understand what it means to you, it’s likely you’ll instantly feel a bit more confident.
Earlier we talked about all the small muscle fibres that make up a muscle so let me introduce you to some fibres of confidence.
I like to think about them as Confidence Cousins they work together to help to keep your confidence muscle strong.
- OPTIMISM – an attitude about the world, confidence and optimism work together to encourage action, optimism is the sense that everything will work out, confidence is I can make this work.
- SELF-COMPASSION – is a way of being, a kind gentle cousin that reminds us to treat ourselves the same way we treat friends
- SELF EFFICACY – is the belief in our ability to succeed at something , the just get it done cousin, linked to confidence through our belief to succeed in the world!
- SELF ESTEEM – an attitude about ourselves, our self-worth and our personal value. The cousin that reminds us to make a choice about how we see ourselves.
You could be forgiven to thinking that these cousins are all really similar, but when explored individually they bring something entirely unique to building confidence, you might find you have a great relationship with one cousin but need to work on a better relationship with another?
Of course there are also Confidence Demons to bring your confidence levels down – but let’s focus on the positives for now!
CELEBRATE – the final segment in the cycle is about celebrating ALL success along the way, however big & small with your cheerleaders / review significant things. How often do we do something and quickly move onto the next thing without stopping to celebrate what we’ve achieved?
Determine what your WINS are, they don’t have to be BIG, they can be SMALL too.
Take the time to recognise them, frame them as WINS and stop putting yourself down because you did that but you didn’t do this or the other CELEBRATE THE WIN of you did that!
So which part of the Enrichment Confidence Cycle will you work on?