Have you ever wanted to try a new job, sport, or hobby, and thought, “I am not confident enough to do this.” If that sounds familiar I assure that you are not alone.
When I first went to a yoga class I thought, “Who am I kidding? I’m way too high energy for deep breaths and holding still in a single pose.” At my first class, the instructor said, “Ready, set, go.” I looked like I was going to run a race, not practice a healthy way of life. But over time, I practiced the art of yoga. It took a few yoga mentors to help me understand that I actually could do it. They encouraged me and helped me build my confidence. Not only did I learn the poses, I was eventually teaching them to others. But in the beginning, I convinced myself that I shouldn’t even try. I did not want to step up to the plate (or yoga mat) for fear of failing and being judged.
There are many reasons why women are not confident. For some, it is fear of failure. For others, it is being afraid of what others will think of you. When I started practicing yoga, I thought I looked ridiculous and cared what others thought of my off balanced moves.
But here is the cold, hard truth – we can place the blame elsewhere but the only thing that stops us from doing anything is ourselves.
Whether it comes from fear of failure, self-doubt, or worry about being judged, women often hold back from what we want to say and do. We often have difficulty believing in ourselves. Both friends and clients have said to me, “How do I ask for a raise?” or “How do I say no?” or “How do I say what I really mean?” What they are really asking me is “How can I believe in myself and express myself with confidence?” If you want to be taken seriously, you have to believe in yourself. So where do you begin?
- Positive self-talk: Start by saying “Yes I can!” When you are nervous about giving a talk, leading a meeting, or introducing yourself to anyone, remind yourself that you are in charge. You would not be in this position unless others thought you could do it. People want to hear what you have to say.
- Self-compassion: Be nice to yourself. Tell yourself it’s ok if you did not succeed the first time. Treat yourself like you would treat a friend if they did not succeed on the first try. Provide self-compassion.
- Be yourself: I learned lesson this early on in my career. I tried to embody the qualities of my mentor and felt like I was failing because I was not her. Focus on your best qualities and embrace who you are.
- Look people in the eye. When you give someone your full attention and eye contact, you project yourself as confident. So look people in the eye, even if it is hard to do.
- Create your own expectations. Do not focus on the expectations you think others have for you. Create your own standards.
To find out more about how you can become confident and the best version of yourself, please attend a special workshop called The Confidence Formula, communicating the best version of you. This workshop is being taught by Denise Rosenblum, a corporate trainer and executive coach, and Kathy Cohen, a clinical psychologist. Together, these women have over 50 years of experience in coaching women to be the best they can be.Special Discount for LTSA Readers! Click Here to Sign Up.
Denise Rosenblum is the President and Founder of Dynamic Development, a training company that specializes in developing employees to become stronger communicators, managers and leaders. Denise works with companies to create an environment where employees feel valued as a result of career development, training, feedback and coaching.
Denise has over 30 years of professional development and marketing experience having worked at global companies including McCann Erickson, Young and Rubicam, Hill Holliday and Arnold Worldwide.
Denise is a seasoned trainer, speaker, executive coach and an expert in communication skills, customer service and management and leadership
development. She has excellent insight into people’s strengths and opportunities for growth.
In her current role, as President of Dynamic Development, Denise has an extensive track record of building successful managers and leaders. Her areas of expertise include:
- Executive leadership and management coaching
- Identifying communication styles and how/where to flex your style
- Providing talent assessment evaluations to company leadership
- Building business through relationships and excellent client service
- Performance management and giving constructive feedback
- Developing and delivering successful and engaging presentations
- Conducting efficient and productive meetings
- Time management and prioritization