Ever see athletes walk into an arena with headphones or notice simple gestures as they get themselves ready to compete? Or even a Ted Lasso episode where the word 'Believe' is taped to the wall in the changing room. It’s all about them getting into the mental and emotional place that will take them to their next level. They’ve done all the work physically. This is their mental work out.
Confidence is not an inherent trait. There is no magic pill or formula. It is a skill that can be honed and developed through consistent effort and practice. Even the most accomplished individuals have experienced self-doubt and insecurity. However, they have discovered the secret to unlocking their full potential and reaching new levels of success.
The Mental Workout:
Just like physical exercise is crucial for maintaining a healthy body, we need to exercise our minds and emotions to strengthen our confidence. Initially, it may feel challenging, and you might even feel like a fraud. However, it is important to focus on your underlying motivation and the goals you aspire to achieve--the reason why you want to feel confident. This will serve as a constant reminder whenever you face discomfort or uncertainty. Additionally, doing the necessary work to prepare yourself—whether it involves research, studying, or practicing your skills—will instil a sense of readiness and security.
Visualisation: A Powerful Tool:
Visualisation is a powerful technique used by many successful individuals to boost their confidence. By mentally rehearsing a task or scenario, you create a vivid image of yourself succeeding. For example, if you have a presentation, visualise yourself confidently delivering it, engaging your audience, and receiving positive feedback. This practice helps you become familiar with the situation, allowing you to feel more at ease when the actual moment arrives. I used to do that when I hosted my own talk show. I would close my eyes and visualise the interview from start to finish. I had prepared for it, I did all the reesearch and outlined all the questions. All I needed to do was practice, practice, practice. What that allowed me to do was feel comfortable when I sat down in front of my guests with all the cameras and lights around me. It helped me to feel prepared and grounded. Plus because I felt ready, I was open to surprises and going off on tangents if the conversation went that way.
The Confidence Checklist:
Here are a few practical tips that can help you boost your confidence on a daily basis. It’s something I have been doing ever since I was a teenager walking into a new high school from day one:
Walking to the Beat: Harness the power of music to get into the confidence zone. Whether with headphones or blasting out loud on your stereo, listen to songs that make you feel empowered. As you walk to the beat, you will notice an instant shift in your posture and mindset, exuding a greater sense of purpose and determination.
Clothes as Armour: Dress in a way that makes you feel amazing and aligns with the image you want to project. Choose outfits that convey authority, accessibility, and credibility while ensuring your comfort. Remember, what you wear is not just for others; it also significantly impacts how you perceive yourself.
Create a Personal CV: Take the time to compile a personal CV that outlines your accomplishments, both personal and professional. This document serves as a reminder of your strengths and capabilities, acting as evidence against self-doubt. Celebrate your achievements, no matter how big or small, and acknowledge the unique qualities that make you who you are.
Confidence as a Muscle:
Confidence is not a one-time achievement; it requires consistent effort and practice. Treat it like a muscle that needs to be exercised regularly. By continually working on your confidence, you develop strength, resilience, and unwavering self-belief. Embrace the process and trust that each day brings you closer to becoming the confident individual you aspire to be.
The Beyoncé Lesson:
Even the iconic Beyoncé struggled with confidence at one point. To overcome her insecurities, she created an alter ego named Sasha Fierce—a persona embodying the qualities she believed she needed to succeed. However, as she continued to grow and develop, Beyoncé realised that she no longer needed Sasha Fierce. She had become the confident, powerful woman she once envisioned. The practice had transformed her second nature into her first, empowering her to step into her true self.
Confidence is not an elusive quality reserved for the select few; it is a skill that can be cultivated by anyone willing to put in the work. Embrace the mental workout, visualise success, and utilise practical techniques like the confidence checklist to build your self-assurance. This is the place you will return to every time you feel off your game or have had an experience that shakes your sense of self. Remember, the journey toward confidence is ongoing, but by practicing these techniques you can become unstoppable.