Extreme Confidence & How To Get It
Extreme confidence – I use the term ‘extreme’ loosely here. What I mean by that is, the kind of confidence that is solid, stable, consistent and real as opposed to the kind that is dependent on how many likes you get on Facebook or what other people think of you, in general. I want you to feel and BE deeply, securely, peacefully – confident.
If your confidence is feeling shaky right now and you feel like other people may have a lot more of it than you or maybe, you feel confident in one area but not another and you suspect it may be impacting your success in business or otherwise, you are in the right place because I will give you my TOP 3 strategies for becoming extremely confident.
Here’s the GREAT news about confidence, you don’t have to be born with it and you can grow it at ANY age whether you are 10 years old or 90.
When I was a teenager, I was seeing a counselor to help me sort through some stuff and one day while in her office, she walked away just long enough for me to take a peek at her private notes about me. Ha-ha, such a teenage move! Her words read “Dangerously low self-esteem”. Yeah. Dangerously. I was too young to really understand how that was impacting me but I knew she was right and I knew it needed to change or I’d be in trouble in life.
Let’s take just a moment to talk about self-esteem as it relates to confidence. They are intertwined yet different. You can have high self-esteem yet lack confidence in something (like math or ballet) and that may be simply because you lack the experience with those things or maybe somebody criticized you once and you internalized that and shut down. Likewise, you can be very confident in math but have low self-esteem which attracts unhealthy relationships.
But with practice and time, when you increase one, you will inevitably increase the other. In this blog, we will focus exclusively on confidence but with the awareness that they are always at interplay.
So how did I go from “dangerously low self-esteem” to having deep confidence? Many different factors produced this but I will give you the Top 3 I can credit – ones that are also easy for you to try on for yourself as soon as today. And please know, this isn’t to claim that I feel confident 100% of the time. You will hear more about that in a bit.
Let’s start with what “extreme” confidence isn’t. It is not dependent on Facebook likes or the opinions of others. It is not fleeting, arrogant, superficial OR without self-doubt. That’s right, it is not without self-doubt or insecurity. Here’s the thing…
A deep sense of personal security comes from knowing that no matter what life throws your way,
you will be fine. You know you can handle it.
Where does that come from? It comes from giving yourself opportunities to prove that to yourself (that you can handle whatever comes your way) and on the path to proving that, of course you will have self-doubt and insecurity especially when you are new at something and learning.
My podcast for example (where this blog originated) – I started with ZERO training or experience. Do I have self-doubt?Of course! I also know the only way to grow confidence with anything is to actually DO IT. This leads me to the first strategy I want to give you to build your confidence and that is to; Challenge yourself and do it BIG.
It is through challenging ourselves to do things that are outside our comfort zone that we grow our confidence and the bigger the challenge, the bigger the growth.
A few of years ago, I hired a Speaking Coach. There was a group of us who worked with her for a few months to develop our Signature Talks. The final step in the process was to fly to Kelowna, Canada (gorgeous place by the way) to film our demo reels and do a photo shoot for our speaker sheets, to use for speaking gigs. We had a full day and night together before filming our demo reels on stage in front of everyone and in getting to know everyone I discovered they had a lot more speaking experience than me.
Enter the self-doubt and nerves. My worst fear was forgetting parts of my talk. You get this I’m sure. Most people dread public speaking.
The day we shot the demo reels, we all had our hair and make-up professionally done. I was sitting in the make-up chair, practicing my talk over and over. Looking great on the outside, feeling very insecure on the inside. Once everyone was ready, we piled into a huge theatre where we would step up onto a huge stage with everyone watching, and be filmed. As we began, I watched each of my colleagues get up and beautifully deliver their talks, without a hitch. They were all wonderful. I grew even more nervous, if that was even possible.
My heart was racing, I stepped on to the stage and began delivering my talk. And then, it happened.
About 10 minutes in, my mind went completely blank. There I was thousands of dollars and thousands of miles into this process to have a demo reel created, standing in front of a theatre of people with a film crew and I blanked – completely blanked. There wasn’t enough time for any of us to stop and restart so we were told to just keep going if we forgot something. I paused, paced for a little bit (I think I wrung my hands) and cobbled enough sentences together to finally find the next place I needed to be at in my talk.
And you know what? I survived. Not only that, everyone said they couldn’t tell I lost my place. To this day, I don’t know if that’s entirely true but what the heck, I’ll take it!
Here’s the thing though, not only did I survive but I walked away FAR more confident about public speaking on stages then when I was just thinking and wondering about it and staying stuck. That is key for you too Love.
If most of your life is routine and comfortable, you are very likely not giving yourself enough challenges to grow your confidence.
Hiding out will only shrink your confidence.
One thing is for sure, had I not given myself the opportunity to fail on that stage I would never be able to succeed because failure is always on the road to success – always.
Michael Jordon (famous basketball player) said, “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the games winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
We must challenge ourselves if we expect to grow and have extreme, deep, lasting confidence.
One VERY important lesson I walked away with through the speaking experience in Canada was to stop comparing myself – something I actually thought I was over! Watching the other women who spoke before me, knowing they had more experience and comparing myself really threw me and I think that is what tripped me up on stage.
Which leads us to my second TOP strategy: Know and remember who YOU are because when you do,
it doesn’t matter what other people are doing in comparison to you. It’s irrelevant.
What does it matter if someone has a gorgeous expensive car if that just isn’t important to you? Or if they are a VP of fill-in-the-blank if you don’t want to climb the corporate ladder. This is also where SoulFUEL® comes in. Know what YOU are here to do, know who you are here to be, know how you want to express yourself in the world then what others are doing matters much less.
What is the greatest contribution you can make while you are here? What is the greatest impact you can make? This doesn’t have to be some huge thing. It is whatever is the fullest expression of YOU.
I sometimes have women come to me who are relatively satisfied in their jobs YET they know there is something MORE for them. They may have no idea what that is but they know something bigger is calling them. That is their SoulFUEL calling them into something greater so they can be truly FREE. The trouble is, we get caught up in the ‘how’ or what that means or potential loss or risk or whatever. Know that when you get caught up in that thinking, it’s just conditioned thought – not what is REALLY True with a capital T.
What is True is what you know deep inside – that there IS something greater for you and when you really grab ahold of that and run, your confidence will skyrocket. You will walk through the world with a sense of assurance and certainty about YOU. You may not know what that means in terms of making a living right now but it is THE most powerful foundation you can possibly stand on.
And then, you want to develop the discipline to remember your SoulFUEL, daily.
Once you know who YOU are, and anchor into that daily, your confidence grows to extremely high levels because all the things that break down your confidence become less important and fade away. The key to this being possible is to quiet the noise around you, quiet the comparisons and develop a kind of tunnel vision about what is most important to YOU.
“Know yourself and you will win all battles.”
None of this is rocket science. I’m just hoping that today you’ll hear it in such a way that makes a BIG difference for you and creates a shift that moves you in a better direction.
The third strategy to grow your confidence is to stand for yourself – stand up for your dreams – consistently and fervently.
If you don’t, who else will?
One of the most common challenges I see with women is a chronic sense of mistrust in themselves. I believe one of the reasons for this is, self-betrayal. When we make decisions that aren’t aligned with our values and what is most important to us, we send a message of betrayal to ourselves (especially the little one inside of us), and of course that breaks down trust in ourselves.
There’s nothing that erodes confidence faster than a break in self-trust.
So how do you stop that cycle?
You start doing things that honor who you are and you STAND for yourself. You CLAIM who you are and what you need to do to live your brightest, best life. You Voice what is most important to you.
If you feel you aren’t getting paid enough at work, you have that conversation with your boss. If you want to invest in starting a business but your husband isn’t supportive, you sell yourself on your vision first and how it will benefit everyone around you and then you declare it – declare it’s essential for you to do and have the honest conversations. In essence, you become your greatest advocate.
When I was about 19, I began my volunteer career advocating on behalf of abused kids. Later on, I became an actual Court Appointed Special Advocate for kids in the foster care system. The woman I mentor was only 12 when we met. She is now 20. My role in her life has always been to advocate on her behalf when her needs were being overlooked by those around her. This was especially true when she was younger and didn’t know how to speak up for herself. I would listen very carefully to her and then speak with her foster mom or lawyer or social worker or the judge to ensure she got what she needed.
I often did this in front of her so she could see what it looked like. I saw my role as someone who could show her how to do this for herself. My goal was never to do this forever for her. I knew she needed to find her own voice and stand for herself and only then could she BE truly empowered and free, not to mention A LOT more confident in herself. I wanted her to learn that she could get what she needed from Life no matter what her circumstances were.
And that day did come. One day she hopped in my car and told me how she had negotiated with her foster mom what time she could come home at night. Woo hoo! My job was done, almost (ha-ha). There has been a lot more to do to help her internalize and develop extreme confidence but I know this for sure, she’s a lot more confident than most kids who have had cushy lives because this girl has been to hell and back and is still here, in college now, working, in a relationship and building her independence.
For those of us who had challenging childhoods, confidence can come easier when you recognize all you’ve had to overcome to get where you are – possibly more than others. Whether challenges are given to you or you willingly take them on –
We must be challenged to grow our confidence.
We must put ourselves in situations that grow and stretch us so we can prove to ourselves what we are made and give us the assurance that no matter what circumstance we are in, we will be okay and the key in this third strategy is to STAND for what you need – for your dreams and desires just like my girl did with her foster mom.
What holds many women back is the fear or worry that in standing for their own dreams and desires, they are taking something away from someone else and nothing could be further from the truth.
As much as our conditioning taught us this, Life is not a pie with only a certain number of slices where if you take more than you “fair share”, you will be stealing from someone else. Life has endless pieces of pie! You can have your pie and eat it too and do that again and again and again and share it many times over with everyone around you.
Look for win-wins everywhere. If you know you want to start or invest more in your own business, how will that benefit not only you but your friends, family, husband, wife, community, clients?
Look for ALL the UPSIDES when you are grounding yourself in your Vision.
Rather than what could go wrong – what could go right?
This practice alone is often THE turning point that pops my clients into doubling, tripling, or quadrupling their money, fulfillment, happiness.
In order to truly stand for yourself, you must convince yourself first – KNOW who you are. KNOW what is most important to YOU. KNOW your SoulFUEL AND stand for yourself. As much as people love you, they will never be able to stand for you as much as YOU. That isn’t their job. It’s yours Buttercup.
It is your job to know what you want in your life and go after it. When you do and when you go after challenges that scare you, no matter what the result, you will grow your confidence. The more often you do that, the bigger challenges you take on, the more extreme, deep and enduring your confidence will become.
So, tell me, what will you do this week to grow your confidence? What challenge will you take on? What scary thing will you do that you will look back on and be SO proud of? Tell me in the comments below. I’d love to personally respond to you!
Love & Light,
SoulFUEL™ Business & Freedom Coach