“Confidence is contagious. So is lack of confidence.” ~ Vince Lombardi
I speak with many top executives seeking a career coach and there is a common theme in the reason for seeking guidance...their confidence has taken a hit. This hit on their confidence may come from any number of experiences – a failed business, a falling out with management, a personal life event, and most often an abusive boss. Yet, it is hard to make a change for the better because this diminished confidence is hindering them from making their next move. It’s a vicious cycle.
However, if you want a successful career, you must have confidence. You must believe in yourself or no one else will. We’ve all heard that phrase before, but it is especially true in building a successful career. People can smell lack of confidence and they are quickly turned off when they do. You may think you portray a certain image, but if you don’t truly believe it, you’re giving off that awful scent. And why would someone hire you or want to work with you if you don’t even believe in yourself? The short answer is they won't.
If you feel less than confident in your career, you can regain it even if your circumstances don't change. Try these helpful tips to build back your confidence:
Write your resume. Not to jump ship, but instead, the exercise of thinking about your accomplishments over your entire career will help you remember just how damn good you really are. And then if you decide your current situation is not right for you, your resume will be all set to go!
Get a mentor. Have confidential conversations with someone you admire. In a mentoring relationship, it’s ok to open your raincoat and tell them your fears. A good mentor will help you overcome those fears and keep you moving forward.
Take a class. You can find leadership classes and other self-improvement courses focused on your specific issue. Plenty of on-line classes are available and some are at no cost! You can take in-person courses such as those offered by the Center of Creative Leadership which may be costly, but can be extremely effective making it worth the investment.
Do a hobby you are good at. Your confidence may not come from your current role, but you can still rebuild confidence by doing something you know you are good at. Celebrate accomplishments out of work and you will feel much stronger.
Try something new. Accomplishing something new will build your confidence. Maybe you’ve always wanted to race a car, run a marathon or do a triathlon, learn a new language, or travel to a new place. Go for it and you will feel exhilarated.
Not long ago, a friend talked me into doing a sprint triathlon. Races are not my gig, but I found that the training made me feel so much stronger mentally as well as physically. Finishing it without stopping (my goal) made me feel confident that I could accomplish many new things. Try one or all of these tips and you will definitely boost your confidence.