When your confidence is low it is highly likely your performance results will be lower. When you aren’t feeling confident you are unlikely to step forward and take a risk and even if you do, you won’t start at your best.
Lots of my work with coaching clients and much of what I have written in “The Impact Book”, “The ‘Keep It Simple’ Book” and “The Attitude Book” explores the many aspects of and how to boost that magic performance enhancer – Self-Confidence.
I have been fortunate enough to work with a wonderful range of clients, from those who seem naturally confident through to those full of doubt - about themselves or the situation - and there are also those, which include me, who find themselves at different points along that spectrum - confidence rising and falling depending on circumstances. When confidence feels lower we tend to revert to known patterns of behaviour and miss growth opportunities.
If you are feeling confident right now, this Simple Note is not for you (yet!). If your confidence feels vulnerable, variable or move-able, then it absolutely is.
When you can’t find it in yourself to simply be confident, find instead the skills and attributes to act confidently.
This is not as easy as it sounds and to take that sentence and apply it this afternoon will unlikely feel authentic or true to your inner feelings, which will eventually win out and lack of confidence will prevail.
Acting confidently takes application, practice and takes time, repetition and rehearsal. First off, you need to research and write a “confidence script”:
· What do you notice about yourself when you are confident? How do you stand? At what pace do you walk and talk?
· Look in the mirror, what do you see? Begin shifting how you stand, how you hold and tilt your head, where you put your arms and hands.
· Consider and observe 3 people who you perceive to have immense self-confidence. For each identify 3 attributes that seem to enhance their confidence.
This material provides content for your confidence script – what to work on to find your way of acting confidently, identifying what it is to look confident and what your perspective is on the look of confidence.
Having developed these for myself and with clients over the years I have also added in three confidence builders:
1. Pre-event – what would you ideally do, eat, drink, get involved in just prior to an event that requires confident-you? List them and build them into your plan.
2. What you wear – if there is anything in your work-wardrobe that you have the slightest concern about, don’t wear it, start building your confident clothes only wardrobe!
3. Breathe – 6 to 10 deliberate, slow and comfortable inhalations. Hold each one and slowly exhale – this induces a more relaxed state
These develop your comfort in being “confident you” and can create a mental connection to being more confident when these things take place. In cricket batsmen will have trigger movements to get into their confident place. In other sports pre-game rituals serve a similar purpose. But keep them real and true to your script and what works for you, not becoming heavily reliant on superstitions or circumstances out of your control.
Develop and continue to review and enhance your script, practice it, ensuring it feels true to your higher potential “confident you”, not held to your lower or middling confident self.
As you get better at acting confidently, your cautious confidence will come out from its cave, just behind the actions. Others will begin to treat you as if you were the confidence you portray, further encouraging your inner confidence to rise.
And on the rare occasion when things don’t work out as expected (something I experienced recently), your ability to remain acting authentically and confidently, even though you won’t be feeling it, keeps you upright, calm and able to work through the situation in a measured way.
This all takes time, but will build your resilience and reduce your susceptibility to the vagaries of our evolving lives.
And as ever, keep it simple.
P. S. Many of my Simple Notes plot and suggest ways to boost confidence - you can explore the whole range of them and other tools by exploring the rest of this website. If you can’t find what you need then get in touch through the Contact page and I will personally respond to you.