The Confidence Myth

For years I was working on my confidence. But it was when I worked on my SELF BELIEF that great things started to happen.

Confidence can be faked.

You can act confident even if that's not how you feel.

For many years, I felt I lacked confidence. In many settings.

My mantra became 'fake it til you make it'.

And that happily saw me through lots of job interviews, client presentations and important meetings.

Then imposter syndrome creeps up on you.

Are you really good at your job?

Or just faking it?

That's why I view confidence as a myth. It's not real. It's not authentic. It's not genuine. To succeed, you need something stronger and more powerful.

That's self belief.

What can you do to develop self belief?

Self belief can be nurtured.

Sometimes it's right there and you just need to give yourself permission. It can develop really quickly, or sometimes it takes a while. But you can nurture it so that when you need it, it's right there.

Here are a couple of exercises to try out.

Exercise 1: Visualise then Act

  • Choose an area of your life where you'd like more self belief, or true confidence. Be really specific. Maybe it's during reviews with your boss, or when delegating projects to your team.

  • Look at what your ideal would be. How will you be feeling? What will you be saying? How will it be different from how things are right now? Which aspects are there right now?

  • And what's the first tiny step forwards you can take? As with most goals, it's best to be really specific. And to take tiny steps forward.

Exercise 2: Magic Wand

  • Imagine you had a magic wand and suddenly had all the self belief and confidence you wanted.

  • Write down 5 things to follow the statement: Now I am truly confident..... e.g. ...I'm going for promotion ...I'm working overseas ...I'm running my own business

  • Once you've seen what you've written, take a moment to reflect on what you've written down. Your answers might surprise you. Take a pause to consider how you are getting in your own way. And what are you going to do about that?

What else is holding you back?

What else is making you anxious? Getting in your way of giving your best performance and realising your true potential?

When searching for new information on Imposter Syndrome, I came across a paper presented for the British Psychological Society conference (9-11 January 2019) from Francesca Fox of TK Maxx about 'Being your best self at TK Maxx'. It made me think how important it is to understand that we're not alone, even when we think we're the only person who feels that way.

This is all about working on where the individual's own anxieties may detract from them operating at peak performance. Where we can help leaders most is working on areas such as imposter syndrome, fear of failure, lack of confidence, fear of authority, perfectionist tendencies, need for approval, etc.

If you would like to explore coaching to overcome areas such as lack of of self belief, fear of failure, need for approval etc. please make an appointment for an initial chat at

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