Tip into Confidence
Confidence comes from inside. It hangs out between your ears. That’s the great news – you can learn to have it, increase it and "friend" your confidence whenever you need to. Here are some tips for you.
Tip 1: You’re not alone. If you’re feeling scared or uncomfortable in a situation, so are others. You don’t have an “exclusive” on feeling the way you do. Think about first learning to drive – how uncomfortable that was, it was for everyone. Awareness doesn’t take away your feelings, it just puts you on notice that you aren’t alone – millions of people in the world, right now, are feeling the same way you are.
Tip 2: Take yourself by the hand – literally. I used to be scared walking into a room of strangers. I thought everyone was staring at me, no one will talk to me, why did I wear this outfit, I have nothing to say – you get the picture. So I learned to take myself by the hand (see the picture). Taking it a step further, one of my hands would pull the other hand over to a person to talk to – I led myself around the room. You can give yourself more comfort than you realize!
Sub-tip: Look for outliers, people standing on the edge of the room, all alone, staring at their feet. Go over and talk to them – they are more scared or uncomfortable than you are. They will welcome a chance to talk to someone. You never know who you might meet!
Tip 3: Teach someone else. You can get creative with this tip. Perhaps you are not confident talking to people at a higher level of the organization. Maybe you’ve got a new task to perform. You might be giving a presentation. Whatever the case may be, think to yourself, how would you teach someone else to do what you have to do? What would you tell them to do first, second, third? Teach these steps to someone else and your confidence will grow.
Tip 4: Channel someone you admire. When you’re feeling scared, think – How would [insert name here] handle this? I’ve used this tip every time I start a presentation. The first 5 minutes are the worst for me. I think of a great speaker that I know, Mary, and I pretend to be her for the first 5 minutes. No one knows that I’m Mary during that time and it helps me to find my flow in the presentation.
Tip 5: Work vs. Home. I have seen so many employees completely confident at home and not confident at work. They are the supreme managers when it comes to home repairs, errand running, directing children, juggling schedules, home budgets, etc. No one taught them these things, they figured them out. Don’t forget to apply these same skills at work – you can figure it out – or ask someone some questions.
What situations are you faced with you’d like more confidence? Do you have some tips you can share? Leave your comments below so we can all benefit. Remember you are not alone.