Depending on the person, confidence can stem from anything from money, possessions and physical looks; right through to family, friends and reputation. Regardless of where you get it, and without sounding ridiculously corny…..your chances for long-term, sustainable success are much greater if your confidence is derived from the inside.
Here are 4 rules to elevate yourself internally:
1) Admit Where You’re Weak, Play to Your Strengths
As humans we take our strengths for granted. So much to the point where we sometimes don’t even know what they are. The problem with this is we often end up continuously venturing into industries, companies and jobs that we’re simply not good at. Many people who do this even create an inferiority complex because no matter what they do or how hard they try, they always come up short compared to others in that field.
This is not to say don’t take risks and try new challenges. But knowing your strengths can help you make more confident decisions going forward and ensure you exit situations that are not working out.
For a quick way to get an idea of what you are good at, I recommend taking the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment by Gallup. It is based on the New York Times Bestseller ‘Now, Discover Your Strengths’. It costs $10 and will give you the top 5 things you are best at, along with a wealth of information.
2) Don’t Get Frustrated by Your Inability to Focus
As a Performance Strategist and Coach, I talk with clients every week who say one of their biggest difficulties is their lack of concentration and focus at work.
The fact is we live in the age of distractions. Understand that every single time your brain has to make the slightest decision, it is using up energy. If you hear your phone vibrate, see an email pop up or are thinking about scrolling through Facebook, your brain has to make a choice. It’s a form of multi-tasking that eats away at your energy levels.
Dr. Joe Dispenza says that the average human loses attention 6-10 times per minute! Solution? Be ruthless with your time. Put your phone on silent, log out of social media, only check your email 2-3 times a day at specific intervals, hide away in a board room and tell your friends to expect delays in your response times while at the office.
3) Caring What Others Think About You is a Good Thing; Worrying What They Think is Pointless
In social settings, many people determine their feelings and actions based on how others treat them. However, if you are generally interested in others and treat them with respect, there isn’t much more you can do in the moment. Be confident that you put your best foot forward and if it’s not being reciprocated, move on.
Always focus on your intent. If your intent is honest, then simply treat everyone the same way you expect to be treated.
4) Treat Yourself as You Would Treat Others
Most of us are much harder on ourselves than we are on others. It’s human nature to expect more from yourself. So although it’s important to treat others the same way you expect to be treated; Neuropsychologist Rick Hanson says in his book Hardwiring Happiness:
“The Golden Rule is a two-way street: We should also treat ourselves as we would treat others.”
So if you find you’re down or frustrated with yourself, ask ‘Would I treat my friend or someone else this same way?’ Hopefully it helps you look at your issue from a different perspective. Confidence is based on the appreciation you have for your own abilities and qualities. But that is only possible if you give yourself permission to feel good.
“Feeling good about yourself doesn’t make you conceited; as your sense of worth grows, there’s actually less need to impress others.” – Rick Hanson
This article was originally published on Graham’s blog here.