How can I be more self-confident? This is a question I am often asked.
The person asking is often of the mind that self-confidence is something which is gained in a moment – it being a ‘commodity’ as such. Something which can be picked up and applied.
Self-confidence is gained over time by learning new tools, practising new skills and endeavouring to do things differently
Imagine going to a store and choosing a cake (cake is close to my heart as those who know me will know and so it was the first thing I thought of). Buying a ready-made cake is going to give me immediate joy and satisfaction. I will buy it, eat it and then when I want to, I will buy another one.
Making the cake myself is going to give me the skills to have the cake for myself – but also be able to make it for others.
If buy a ready-mix cake in a box, I will read the instructions and then add an egg. I will have learned a process of making a cake from a mix and added my own unique ingredient to it. I will feel ownership and I will have learnt a skill which I can then replicate. Then, once I have made it a few times, I might look at the ingredients on the box and think ‘I could buy those separately, I don’t actually need the box.’
Four stages to build self-confidence
Unconscious incompetence – this is when we don’t know what we don’t know. We are not aware of the behaviours we have that would benefit us to change. – We are not aware that we would like a cake or even that we can buy one.
Conscious incompetence – this is when we realise what we are doing or not doing that which causes us anxiety or emotional pain. – We are buying and eating the cake and we think we could never make one so lovely. We don’t know that cake is the answer.
Conscious competence – we are aware of what we need to do to change our behaviour or response so that we will feel happier or more at ease. This is where we learn new tools, practice new skills and endeavour to do things differently. – We realise that we can buy a cake-mix to make the cake ourselves but we have to put an egg in it to make it work.
Unconscious competence – we are now in a place where we do the new behaviours without thinking about them. We have practised them so that they become part of our sub-conscious functioning. – We don’t need the cake mix, the box or the instructions, we know what the components are and we can make the cake whilst listening to the radio or talking to the children. We might even create our own cake by adding different flavours and icing. We can share the cake and give others the benefit of our experience.
To gain confidence – we have to add the egg – the egg represents our courage. We have to put something of ourselves into the mix. Courage is fragile but once we crack it, we can use it to change our lives.
If you would like to learn how to build your confidence or just make your own cake, book a Discovery Session today.