If you were to grade your confidence, what grade would you give yourself?
Would you give yourself an A, because you’re filled with confidence all the time, no matter what?
Or would you give yourself an F, because you’re plagued with doubts and insecurities most of the time?
If you’re like most people, you fall somewhere in the middle. You’re somewhat up and down on your feelings of confidence. Some days you feel like you could take on the world and win, and other days you’re not even sure you can make it through a brief meeting with your boss.
Well, let me tell you, that kind of fair-to-middling confidence will not cut it in today’s highly competitive world. To be a winner, a champion, a highly effective inspiring leader, you need to have an undefeatable confidence.
And you can get that by taking these 4 steps.
=> 2. Get rid of your unrealistic expectations.
Non-confident people suffer from an overdose of perfectionism. They feel like they have to be perfect, flawless, please everyone, and feel guilty if they’re not any of those things.
Non-confident people also “should” on themselves much too often. Some of their favorite phrases are such things as “I must … I have to … and … I ought.” They always feel the need to do more and achieve more.
Does any of that sound like you?
If you’re a confident person or a highly effective leader, you may start the day with five very important items on your To-Do list. At the end of the day you may say, “I finished three of those items, made some progress on another item, but didn’t get anywhere on the last item. Not too bad.” You go home and feel okay about your progress.
If you have unrealistic expectations, you may start the day with 15 items on your To-Do list, accomplish the same three or four things as the person in the previous paragraph, but go home feeling like a total failure. That approach will never give you the confidence you need.
Side Note: Another reason some people are so much more confident than others is they know how to read other people’s body language. So instead of being in the dark, they know what other people are really saying or have left unsaid, how they feel, what their attitudes are, and whether or not they’re lying.
You will learn all those secrets at my upcoming live webinar on BODY LANGUAGE: How To Read What Every Body Is Saying. It will be offered on April 25, 2018 from 2 to 3 p.m. Eastern Time. More information coming soon!
=> 2. Acknowledge any leftover guilt.
I was reminded of that when I saw a sign in an auto repair shop. It said, “A clean engine produces more power.” Well that’s true. But it’s also true for human beings.
If your engine, your conscience, your motivational core … whatever you call it … is not as clean as it should be, it’s bound to slow you down.
If you’ve done some things you’re not proud of … if you’ve hurt some people … or if you’ve failed to tackle some of the opportunities that have come your way … you may have some unresolved guilt about that. And your guilt will make you feel miserable instead of confident.
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the author of all the Sherlock Holmes stories, played a prank one day to see how guilt does exactly that. He sent a note to 12 prominent Englishmen … the same note … that simply said, “All is found out. Flee at once.” And within 24 hours, eight of those men left the country. They were dealing with some unresolved guilt.
If you have guilt that is eroding your confidence, you must learn to…
=> 3. Forgive yourself.
You must remind yourself that everybody makes mistakes. Everybody!!!
The difference is … inspiring leaders look at their mistakes, learn from their mistakes, and move on. As first-lady Eleanor Roosevelt said, when asked how she accomplished so much, “I never waste time with regrets.”
By contrast, non-confident people aren’t able or don’t know how to forgive themselves.
If that sounds like you, you can do a couple of things. One, make amends. Do something to make up for your poor behavior. For 30 years it bothered me that I had stolen some school supplies from my elementary school when I was a kid … until I finally wrote them a note of apology and sent a generous check to pay for the items. That nagging sense of guilt in the back of mind never returned again.
Two, speak forgiving words to yourself. Psychologist, Christian counselor, and friend Dr. Bev Smallwood recommends saying things like this: “This day, I release myself from the burden of self-condemnation and destructive guilt. I withdraw from the internal conversations with the voice that reminds me of my shortcomings and past mistakes. I respect myself, even when I’ve lost status or failed to achieve what I thought I should.”
=> 4. Encourage yourself.
Now that might sound strange, but it’s the same thing you probably did with your kids when they were learning to walk. You encouraged them. And you need to encourage yourself in the same way.
When my daughter was learning to walk, for example, she would take a step and stumble. She’d get back up; take two steps, then trip and fall. She’d take another step and fall backwards. And so on for the longest time.
Do you think I yelled at her when she stumbled? Of course not. I never said, “What are you doing? … Get back up on your feet, young lady! … How dumb can you be? … Zimmermans don’t stumble. We have more pride and dignity than that! … Get up! … No more of that falling-down stuff! … You can do better!”
I didn’t do that to my kids and you didn’t either. But the strange thing is … that’s how we often treat ourselves. We give ourselves disrespectful commands rather than encouragement. That’s got to stop.
You must learn how to encourage yourself; how to talk to yourself positively; how to program your mind for confidence and success.
The good news I’ve developed an exact step-by-step, scientifically proven method you can use to talk to yourself. This method builds undefeatable confidence that will serve you well as a leader or in any other role you play.
Unfortunately, it would take me an entire program to take you through every step, and space never allows that in my Tuesday Tip. That’s why so many organizations hire me to deliver my keynote or seminar on UP Your Attitude at one of their upcoming meetings. People love it and the results are phenomenal.
(For more information on UP Your Attitude, go to https://www.drzimmerman.com/programs/keynotes/improving-attitude-and-taking-action)
Final Thought: “Focus more on your desire than on your doubt, and the dream will take care of itself.” Marcia Wieder, author
Dr. Zimmerman’s Tuesday Tip, Issue 930 – 4 Steps to Undefeatable Confidence and Inspiring Leadership