Confidence. We either have it or we don't, right?
Yes and no. Confidence isn't something we are born with.
Building self-confidence is a two-phase process. The first phase involves purging yourself of self-doubt; and the second, you build up your confidence. It’s like erecting a skyscraper: First you clear the site and lay a solid foundation, then you build the superstructure. How high you go--how much confidence you muster--is up to YOU.
Typically, the difference in our confidence level comes down to how we react to criticism, our ability to gain knowledge and experience, and the decisions we make throughout the day. It's possible to grow in confidence at work, but you have to be ready to apply these daily habits:
1. Verbally acknowledge your own successes
Don't be afraid to let people know when you get a win. Sometimes it can feel like bragging, but you should verbalize wins. This builds confidence by pointing out, in a matter-of-fact way, that you were the one who accomplished something for the company. It makes you more confident because you get into the habit of self-rewards and self-acknowledgement.
2. Tell people you will finish the task
Confidence often starts when you state your intentions. Yes, scary, but it let's people know you will finish a task. Now it's pressure to go ahead and finish the task! By voicing your goals to everyone, you gain confidence because you have accountability. PLUS, speaking it out loud helps you build credibility with others in the office and gain more respect. Note that a confidence killer can also happen if you don't finish the work - which I know you won't do!
3. Speak your mind
Wait, now isn't this counteractive? Nope. I'm not telling you to go out there and splurge everything that comes to mind. Be tactful! But remember, a lack of confidence is usually a bottleneck that keeps you from saying what you really think. Uncork that confidence blocker! State your opinion in a meeting. Now you have just built confidence because you can see the reactions to your viewpoint and adjust as needed.
4. Increase your knowledge
Isn't it easier to speak about a topic we know a lot on? Absolutely. And we typically aren't in fear of what others think. Now, we CAN go overboard, and that can be a confidence killer when people who have greater knowledge on the subject start debating with you. But you know what is better? Acting on what you know - whether someone knows more about the subject or not. Praise yourself for opening up about a topic you know about.
Have you noticed that people who have confidence smile more? When I was an employee, people used to ask me why I smiled so much. I told them because I had love in my heart and I knew that each day was a gift. Sounds corny, but smiling is an action that reflects your attitude. Your change in attitude about what is going on in the office, builds your own confidence. The more I smiled, the more confident I became in what I was able to do. You will realize you need to have a better outlook--and that's highly contagious. Confidence is clearly reflected.
Building confidence takes time, but the benefits are HUGE. When you have increased confidence, you tend to be less stressed, the days flow better, and people respect you more! I believe in you. You are stronger than you think you are. You have the power to improve your life and are capable of change.
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