What does it take to stand apart from the crowd? To put your dreams at the top of your priority list? To pursue your goals despite objections and criticism from people you care about, and from people you don’t? To overcome the fear of messing up and the associated embarrassment? To take rejection on the chin without letting it knock you to the core? To put yourself out there, even when it’s difficult and you’d rather curl up with a cuppa and a biscuit? To make your life magnificent?
Well, it takes a number of things. Clarity of your goals, for one thing, a strategy and a plan for another, and a bit of a thick skin. But, the key ingredient – the magic sauce – is confidence!
Now, if you’re sitting there thinking, “I am confident”, yet you’re not pursuing your dreams, then I’d like to know what’s stopping you? Although, of course, I already know the answer…
Money, right? And time? Perhaps the energy? Yeah, I’ve heard them all before. And I’ve used them all before too. In fact, I was always considered by my family, friends, and peers, to be a very confident person. And, on the surface I could certainly put a face on it. But the truth, when I finally cared to admit it, was that I had no self-belief, except when I was smack bang in the middle of my comfort zone, and I was allowing these obstacles to grow into 40 foot brick walls because, by doing so, I was able to let myself off the hook for having settling for such a crummy existence. And, I’m not saying they weren’t real obstacles, because of course they were, I mean, I really, truly didn’t have the money, the time or the energy. Even when I finally did decide to go for it…
You see, without confidence, you never quite have the guts to put any meat on the bones of your idea. Because you’re always worrying what people will think and how they’ll react. You get paralysed by the idea of handling the fallout if you mess up; or worse yet the embarrassment. You convince yourself that you’ll never be able to get buy-in from others, and that the rejection will be unbearable; even crippling.
So, without the money, time or energy, how the hell did I manage it? Well, by first building my confidence and self-esteem to a level I’d never dreamed possible, of course.
You see, when you learn to believe in yourself and your abilities, you begin to flesh out that little idea. Flesh it out until it becomes more than just a pipe-dream and instead becomes a beautiful obsession. At that point the money, time and energy shortages begin to pale into insignificance. You start researching how you can raise the money, and you realise that there are lots of options. They might not all be the most desirable options, but as you begin to see your growth as an investment rather than an expense, it’s amazing how creative you will become. And the time? Well, thanks to that beautiful obsession, you finally realise that your goals are more important than trying to keep everyone happy. Now, I’m not suggesting that you become selfish. And if you’re used to being a “Yes-Woman”, then I know for a fact that you just read that and decided: “Selfish”. But this isn’t about selfish. And, of course, there are some people that you will choose to continue helping irrespective of your goals. What this is about though, is priorities. Your priorities. And, when you have the confidence to pursue your goals, you’ll recognise that you need to make the time, and so you’ll decide who you can afford to let down, and what things you’re involved in that just don’t matter to you. What’s more, you’ll learn the value of getting up promptly instead of snoozing 3 or 4 times and bumbling through your morning, you’ll develop methods to improve your productivity and effectiveness, and perhaps most importantly, you’ll discover that you have boundless energy, because your goal is now an intense passion.
Ok. So, what is confidence anyway? And where the heck do you get it from?
Well, the best news of all, is that confidence is very simple to understand and cultivate, because it’s merely a mindset. And it only takes two steps. The first step, is simply to choose. To decide to pursue confidence and relinquish the hold that fear has over you. And, the second, is to practice confidence. And this is where so many fail. You see, choosing is a fantastic first step, and while it is easy to learn the hacks that can turn your mindset to confidence, a deeper understanding and consistent practice is where the mastery is. This is where you will truly build your confidence, by going out and pushing past the doubt and learning how to get truly comfortable with discomfort. And that’s not something you come to terms with on the first attempt, or the second, or the third.
As it is, confidence is one of my very favourite things to coach people on, because I am well aware of what an incredible game changer it can be for people. And I have seen, time and time again, the incredible unsticking ability of confidence, for working women who feel trapped on the treadmill of life. So, in the next few days, I’m launching my “Life Changing Confidence: Intensive VIP Days”. These are dedicated one-to-one full day sessions where I’ll teach you the very fundamentals of confidence building, lead you to identify your values and confidence blockers, show you how to overcome self-sabotage and limiting beliefs, and together build a specific strategy, tailored to your particular circumstances, in order that you can begin experiencing life on your terms instead of living life like the walking dead!
Sound good? Then watch this space for further details.