Have you ever looked at individuals in the public eye and wondered where they get all their confidence. I know I have, and lucky for me I have had the opportunity to represent many high profile individuals, giving me behind the scenes access to the truth.
What I discovered is, even those in the spotlight suffer from fear and insecurity. They too question their abilities and worry they will make mistakes. The difference, however, between them and those who hide in the safety of their comfort zone is they have worked out ways to manage their fear and insecurity.
Being great at what you do and having your intentions in the right place is also a prerequisite. A solid foundation of experience and knowledge absolutely contribute to feelings of confidence. But even if you have all the experience in the world and you know close to all there is to know, that little voice in your head may still stop you from putting yourself out there. If that's the case, here are three powerful rituals I discovered through research and experience.
Stand Like a Superhero
This ritual is inspired by the remarkable work of New York Times bestselling author and TED phenomenon, Amy Cuddy. In her book Presence, Cuddy shows how your body language influences others and even changes the way you see yourself. Through research and exploration, Cuddy discovered spending as little as two minutes in a power posture can notably enhance your feelings of presence and power. If you can't picture what a superhero pose is, I suggest you google Superman or Wonderwoman. Admittedly not the best pose to strike in a meeting or with a group of friends, but no harm in finding a quiet place of solitude to channel your inner superhero and gain a little confidence from him or her.
Give Your Inner Voice a Name
Yes, I questioned this at first, however knowing it comes from the work of world-leading Stanford psychologists Dr Carol Dweck definitely made me feel better. Dweck refers to that little negative voice within, as our fixed mindset and explores it in detail in her internationally bestselling book, Mindset. Our fixed mindset is based upon a belief that we are born with a set amount of intelligence and ability. Dweck suggests by embracing a growth mindset and believing we have the capacity to rewire, change and enhance our intelligence and abilities, we set ourselves up to reach our greatest potential. So back to giving your inner voice a name . . . By giving that incessant stream of negative thoughts a name, we allow ourselves to detach from it and even talk back. We don't accept it as fact and give ourselves the ability to rise above and confidently forge forward in the direction of our dreams.
Say Thank You
This may be considered more a habit than a ritual, however saying thank you is a wonderful and simple way to boost your confidence. When someone gives you recognition or a compliment and you turn it down, you are subconsciously reinforcing a belief you are not good enough. On the other hand, by accepting the praise, you are also telling yourself you are worth it and worthy of greater things. The more you repeat those two simple words in response to any positive feedback coming your way, the more confidence you will have in the ultimate truth that you are amazing.
Life is short and the world needs what you have to offer. In the wise words of the Dalai Lama, 'With the realisation of one's own potential and self-confidence in one's ability, one can build a better world."