10 things that are killing your confidence (and what you can do about it).
As a coach and mentor for women, I’ve supported many, many women from all walks of life to achieve a whole host of different types of goals and let me tell you- regardless of who I’m working with and what we’re working on, there’s always some kind of confidence work needed.
Why does confidence even matter?
Being confident allows you to step forwards and fulfil your true potential in whatever situation, whether that’s in your personal life or your career. On the other hand, when you experience a lack of confidence, it can stop you from striving for what you want in life, leaving you feeling unhappy and unfulfilled.
Your lack of confidence could look like:
The inability to make a decision
Having terrible boundaries
Always waiting until you’re ready to start things (then never actually starting)
Missing out on opportunities
Lots of regrets
And so much more.
But you don’t need me to tell you this, you know that lack of confidence is costing you personally and that’s why you’re here, so let’s get into why this might be and what you can do about it.
1. You’re a perfectionist
If you set the bar so incredibly high that the only result you deem acceptable is perfection, you are seriously going to stay playing small, in the same place, doing the same things forever. Let that sink in. Messy, imperfect action, however, will mean that you dare to try new things, accepting they may or may not work, but knowing you can tweak and change as you go and keep moving forwards until you get where you want to be in life.
2. You’ve had a confidence-crushing experience
Sometimes certain things can happen that have a knock-on effect on our confidence and this stays with us. I’m 41 now and I can remember like it was yesterday, 15-year-old me stood at the front of my maths class and the teacher telling me that I wouldn’t pass my maths GCSE (I did by the way!). This formed a belief that I wasn’t good enough, which I carried with me for years until I reprogrammed my belief system (more about how to do that here.)
3. Your lack of clarity around your strengths
I see this a lot with women that have been in the same job for a long time and are struggling to find the confidence to pursue a new role. They are stuck on a hamster wheel, going through the motions day in and day out and never step off and focus on themselves. One of the first things I do with my clients is to focus on their strengths, qualities, abilities, and attributes, because if they don’t know what they are, how can they possibly capitalise on them?
If you surround yourself with negative people who pull you down, try and talk you out of your dreams and doubt you, this will have a detrimental impact on your confidence levels. On the other hand, spending time with like-minded, positive people with growth mindsets who empower, encourage you and challenge you to be your best will impact your confidence positively. If you don’t have those confidence boosters in your life right now, go out and get them.
5. Your fear of failing
Those fears you have around failing, making a mistake, being judged, doing the wrong thing- they are making you stay stuck in that place that you don’t want to be. I know that these fears are scary but do you know what’s scarier? Being stuck exactly where you are forever more feeling unhappy and wanting more from your life and/or career. Changing your relationship with fear will make such a difference to your results. Successful people don’t fear failure. They accept that it’s part of the journey to success. They use failure as an opportunity to iterate and improve and they know how to fail fast and fail forwards, do you?
6. The way you're treating yourself when you get it wrong
When something doesn’t go your way do you congratulate yourself for giving it a go, look at what you can learn from the situation, make changes and then go again? Or do you reach for the biggest stick and beat yourself with it? You will be much more likely to have the confidence to take action if it's the former. Now be honest, which kind of person are you?
7. You're stuck in the comparison trap
It’s one thing to have people in our lives that we look up to and find inspirational, but quite another to spend our precious time looking at other people, comparing ourselves and making ourselves feel utterly terrible. Invest that energy into taking action in your own life and watch your confidence rise as a result.
8. Your negative thoughts and perceptions
As Henry Ford once said, ‘whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right. This is simply because your thoughts create your feelings, your feelings create your actions, and your actions create your results. If you spend all your time telling yourself about how you’re not good enough, how you will fail anyway so shouldn’t bother trying, guess what will happen? Exactly!
9. You’re feeling disengaged
I see this a lot with women who don’t feel comfortable in the workplace, particularly in new roles or after long periods of absence such as maternity leave. They feel disconnected from their peers and disengaged from the team/organisation and the more this goes on, the less confident they become to get involved, share their thoughts and perspective etc. Maybe you can relate?
10. You’re waiting to feel ready
So, so often I speak to amazing, capable and talented women who are not where they want to be because they are waiting to feel ready before taking action. Staying in your cosy comfort zone and watching the clock, hoping and waiting that a miracle will happen, and you will one day wake up feeling 100% ready to leave it, will quite possibly be one of the biggest mistakes you ever make. I need you to understand that courage comes before confidence and confidence comes from doing the thing. It’s like riding a bike, the only way you can get on one and confidently cycle down the road is by going through that tricky bit at the beginning where you’re wobbling a bit, you potentially even fall off, but you get back on again and practice until it feels effortless and you can do it without really thinking about it. You simply can’t get to be an expert at something without being willing to first be a learner, how willing are you?
So, there we have it, 10 things that are killing your confidence.
Now, what can you do about it?
You can start to supercharge your confidence superpowers that’s what!
I’ve put together a guide to get you started and it’s completely free
You can grab it right here.
And if you would like some 1:1 support with this, here's some more information about how I can help you.
If you want to ask any questions you can contact me here: email@example.com
Or you can book a complimentary chat with me here.
I'm excited for you.