Because so many bad things have happened to me over the past year and a half, I automatically always assume the worst. It’s a habit I’m trying to break, but it’s difficult for me because everything that could go wrong personally and professionally did (although much of what happened was actually a blessing in disguise).
I’ll give you a great example. Just the other day, one of my clients texted me to say he wanted to talk to me. The message was short and for no good reason, I assumed the worst.
Here are some of the thoughts that went though my head, “Maybe he wants to end the relationship, “Maybe I did something wrong,” “Maybe he’s unhappy.”
I wish I could shake these feelings of not doing things right even when I am. Or not worrying about the worst thing happening without any inclination that it might. I’ve struggled with my self-confidence my entire life, but especially over the past year and a half with battling depression.
I function as this law firm’s chief marketing officer, and I am intimately involved in every aspect of their firm. I’m juggling a lot with them and other clients, and I always worry that I’m not making everyone happy professionally not to mention meeting all of the pressures in my personal life.
It’s part of who I am as a person. I’m the kind of party host who will stress about everyone having a good time. And it’s impossible to make everyone happy at the same time unless of course you are a jar of Nutella.
So in any event, it turned out he just wanted to talk to me to tell me that I was doing a great job for the firm.
I worried for nothing.
He also wanted me to be more confident in my work and to believe in myself more. He said, “My goal is to get you to lighten up and be confident in yourself and the really good work you do for us.” Wow.
All he wanted was to help me be more confident so I would be more successful. I am so lucky to have a client like this.
I share this story because I know I seem pretty confident and like I have it all together but I assure you that I don’t. And it is OK to feel that way. It’s also OK to need outside reinforcement that you’re doing a good job, and if you feel like you’re not getting that kind of feedback, ask for it.
There’s a book called the Five Love Languages that I really like for navigating personal relationships (because men are from Mars and women are from Venus lol). There are lessons you can take from that book and apply to your professional relationships as well to communicate better and achieve your desired outcomes as well as to just be heard better.
Some people need reinforcement of the good job they’re doing and some people don’t. Make sure you’re speaking the same language with your clients or your supervisor to avoid miscommunications.
Here are some tips to improve your self confidence for those times when you need a reminder that yes you really are great at what you do.
- Visualize yourself as you want to be.
- Figure out what gives you confidence and do more of that.
- Do one thing that scares you every day.
- Question and silence your inner critic.
- Set yourself up to win.
- Grow your skills.
- Set yourself up for success.
- Help someone and do more kind acts.
- Give yourself extra TLC.
- Stop comparing yourself to others.
Always strive to do your best but accept you’re not perfect and neither is anyone else no matter what they portray on social media.
Don’t fall into the trap that I did which is not feeling great about yourself in one aspect of your life and letting it take over other areas. Or waiting for the other shoe to drop without any evidence that it would. My confidence was shattered and it’s taken a really long time to rebuild it, even though I seem like I’ve got it all together.
And trust me so many people also seem like everything is perfect when they’re actually battling self-doubt, anxiety and other personal stressors, but it’s possible to be successful in spite of all of this.
Being more confident starts with one thing — YOU.
YOU make the decision to take action. And when all else fails, YOU can make a choice.
YOU can choose to be confident. YOU can choose confidence over fear and self-doubt. Your mind believes what you tell it.
If you continue to tell yourself the story that you are not confident, you will believe it and your self-doubt will continue. But if you tell yourself you can do it, your mind will believe that too.
It’s so easy to assume the worst, but it’s important to believe in yourself no matter what life throws at you.
Transform the negative emotions into positive ones. The only person who can stop negative thoughts is YOU.