Is Confidence a Skill?
Most of us know or have seen somebody who seems effortlessly confident in whatever they do and it can often leave us wondering if this is a skill they have learnt, or part of their natural genetics.
In this blog we are going to look a little deeper into the concept of confidence.
A skill is defined as “The ability to do something well; expertise”
What is Confidence?
Confidence is defined as being “sure of oneself; having no uncertainty about one’s own abilities, correctness, successfulness, etc.”
Below are a few examples of when we can use confident in a sentence,
“They are a confident speaker”
“He was a confident swimmer”
“She is a confident business owner”
“He is a confident massage therapist”
“They are confident drivers”
Being confident demonstrates the ability to feel comfortable and proficient in taking part in certain actions and those that are confident are okay with doing the thing they’re confident in.
Not all individuals were born this way, for some, it took time and effort to learn this as a skill.
Can you learn to be confident?
Confidence is a skill that can be learnt over time. It won’t necessarily be easy, but those with a growth mindset are more likely to be able to develop confidence in the areas they want to be confident in.
When I first started delivering wellbeing webinars, I was not confident at all. This was completely new to me!
My palms were sweaty right before each session and my heart was always beating faster than normal.
I was not familiar with these types of software and hadn’t used them much which gave me low confidence.
After two years of delivering online sessions, I can now say that I am extremely confident in delivering webinars and workshops virtually.
In fact, once I got to grips with the technology It was smooth sailing from there.
So how did I get there?
Four ways to build confidence
There are lots of ways to build confidence but here are four suggestions that should help.
The more you do something, the more you gain confidence in it.
Practicing not only helps us to get better at whatever it is we’re trying to improve, but it also helps us to build confidence.
When we are good at things, we are naturally more inclined to be confident.
If you want to be more confident in talking with others, then practice talking with others. Use any opportunity you can.
Start with friends, family or those that you are close with, then try and have a conversation with the cashier the next time you go shopping.
Practice, practice, practice!
- Get encouraging feedback
Whenever we learn a new skill feedback is always beneficial. Feedback helps us to learn from our mistakes so we can improve on them.
However, if feedback is presented to us in the wrong way, this can have a negative impact on our confidence and research has shown that negative feedback can have a detrimental impact on an individuals self-efficacy.
On the other hand, positive feedback has been shown to improve self-efficacy.
This has a direct impact on our confidence. If we are not feeling sure of ourself, positive feedback can help us to reassure ourselves giving us those feelings of confidence.
Have you ever been in a situation where you’ve been hesitant to do something, but someone has positively encouraged you to do it, which has then resulted in you feeling more confident?
In order to build confidence, we should aim to get positive feedback to encourage us and help us grow.
- Set achievable goals
When we practice skills to be confident, it’s beneficial to set achievable and realistic goals.
Reaching our goals can help us to strengthen our confidence. Goal setting is a great way to work towards achieving the things we want to achieve.
When we set realistic goals and achieve them, this can often spur us on to do more, which helps us to build confidence.
At Loving Life we deliver a “Realistic Goals & Motivation” webinar helping individuals to achieve their goals and ambitions. Companies hire us to deliver this to support their employees.
- Rephrase negative thoughts and words into positive ones
The way we think can impact how confident we are in the things we choose to do.
If we are constantly thinking negatively and telling ourselves “I can’t”, “I shouldn’t”, “What if I fail”, or other negative phrases, this can make us believe it.
If we change our words to “I can”, “I should”, “What if I succeed”, this can help us to see each situation in a more optimistic light.
Our vocabulary is extremely important when it comes to our confidence. Our words can impact our emotions, accomplishments and motivation.
How to be more confident at work
Our working environments can occasionally be a daunting place.
We may not feel confident to speak up, talk with colleagues, share recommendations, challenge ourselves, or something else.
Feeling confident within our job role can often take some time, especially if we’ve just moved companies or taken on a new and more challenging duty.
Fear not, we’ve collated some top information to help you feel more confident at work.
5 ways to feel more confident at work
- Ask questions
Not knowing things about our job role can damage our confidence. If we’re unsure of how to do something we should ask someone who knows how to do it.
Asking questions allows us to gather further knowledge which can help us feel more confident in our job roll.
Each and every one of us are continuously learning and there’s no shame in asking questions to help us learn and if you’re feeling uncertain about something within your job role, ask the relevant person.
- Find supportive colleagues
It’s always nice to have work friends. Some of us have more than others but we should all be trying to find supportive colleagues.
Colleagues are there to do their job but buddying up with someone as a support partner or an accountability partner can help you to feel more confident.
Accountability partners can also help you achieve your goals, giving you even more sense of satisfaction, allowing you to feel even more confident in your job role.
- Dress for confidence
What we wear can have a direct impact on our confidence. When we wear clothes, we’re not comfortable in or don’t feel good in, it can negatively impact in our confidence.
If a colleague of ours mentions that we look nice in particular attire, we often get a little boost in self-esteem and confidence.
Our choice of clothing can empower us, motivate us and help us to believe in ourselves and we also feel great when we’re comfortable in what we wear.
Personal Stylist Sian Clarke says “Style is a way to show the world who you are without having to say a word”
Dressing confidently allows you to feel confident. Give it a try!
- Ask for feedback
If you’re not feeling confident in a particular area at work, ask for feedback.
Getting feedback is a great way to improve on things we’re not so good at, and get reassurance on things we are good at.
Rather than sit there and worry if you’re doing things right, or if your colleagues or boss are happy with your work, ask them!
When we get feedback at work it can help us to make adjustments where necessary. When we feel we’re doing our job well, we feel more empowered, more fulfilled and more confident.
- Remember you’re human
We all make mistake from time to time, as does every human on this planet. It’s completely okay to make mistakes here and there as long as we are learning from them.
If we constantly feel we can’t make any mistakes and have to be perfect 100% of the time, this can have a negative impact on our confidence when we make a mistake.
When you make a mistake, remember you’re human, think about how you can learn from it, and try not to make the same mistake again.
We are all human and it’s important we remember this.
At Loving Life, we deliver a “Build unstoppable confidence” webinar to help companies build and support employees with their confidence.
Get in contact for more info!
Tyler Lowe – Health & Wellbeing Speaker
BSc Sport & Exercise Rehabilitation