Confidence. We either have it or we don't, right?
Yes and no.
Confidence isn't something we are born with. Having more confidence at work and in life is a two-step process: (1) You need to purge yourself of self-doubt and negative talk; (2) 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 each and every day. It's definitely possible to grow in confidence at work, but you have to be ready to apply these daily habits:
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 really should verbalize wins. This action builds confidence by pointing out 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-acknowledgment.
Tell people you will finish the task
Confidence often starts when you state your intentions. Yes, scary, but this lets people know you will finish a task. Now you have pressure on you to go ahead and finish the task! By voicing your goals to people, you gain confidence because you have accountability. PLUS, speaking it out loud helps you build credibility with others in the office and the opportunity to gain more respect.
Note though that a confidence killer can also happen if you don't finish the work – which I know you won't do!
Speak your mind
Wait, now isn't this counteractive? Nope.
I'm not telling you to go out there and verbally purge 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. Speak up about an activity on a project timeline. Now you have actively built confidence because you can see the reactions to your viewpoint and adjust as needed.
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. And then keep learning!
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.
Rock That Confidence
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. Go forth in confidence, friend!
Vennessa is an executive career and business coach helping leaders leverage their innate strengths to increase their impact, while overcoming burnout. Read more from Vennessa at vennessaMcConkey.com
Note from Jena: You may be reading this and still thinking you don’t have much to offer. That is a mindset issue. If your mindset isn’t right around this, go listen to Episode 24 about how to get your mojo back at work on Your Career Story podcast.You need to remember this: you are an asset! You are providing value to a company. And you may also get some great encouragement from Episode 50: How to Sell Yourself in an Interview.
How to Have More Confidence At Work
March 5, 2020