Here is a common misconception; you're born with confidence, or you're not.
Like any skill, confidence should be viewed as a tool, like being an effective communicator or having close attention to detail. And when we categorise confidence as a skill, we recognise it can be learned; therefore, it is attainable.
This year make confidence part of your repertoire! Here are some ways to boost your confidence in the workplace.
Own your strengths
It is essential to know where your strengths lie and flex those muscles. Often, we assume the people around us have picked up on our strongest attributes. In reality, your skills can go unrecognised – not due to being dismissed but because they weren't in prominent view.
If you're an Excel master, send an email to your team offering a lunchtime tutorial. It will highlight many attributes that directly correlate with confidence. It shows initiative, leadership, and faith in your own abilities.
Acknowledge your weaknesses
Examine where your weaknesses are and work on them. Our anxieties are amplified in situations where we feel we have little control or are uncomfortable. Identifying these sore spots and strategizing on how to work through them can be the key to increasing your confidence. View them as opportunities to develop and stretch yourself!
A common area of discomfort is public speaking; look to invest in a public speaking workshop or practice with trusted colleagues.
Then, set yourself a goal. If you usually don't speak up during your weekly team meeting, make it a point to contribute one thing in your meeting. A tip is to read the agenda and arrive prepared – have a question or a statement ready to go. Once you ace this, over time, you'll slowly relax and be able to contribute off the cuff.
We are inspired by so much. Like that time a character in a movie made you change your hair, or your favourite book made you obsessed with France, or your best friend showed you a band, who is now number one on your Spotify playlist. The point is this inquisitiveness is allowed in the workplace.
If there is someone at work who you believe is a great speaker or always seem to be making moves in the company, ask them questions! You best believe they did precisely that to help them gain their confidence.
Don't give up
Sometimes your confidence will be rattled, and this is normal and happens to the best of us. Remember, you aren't always going to deliver a project correctly. You won't always see eye to eye with your colleagues. The key is to reflect and learn from the situation and not let it diminish you.
Don't take things so seriously. Be yourself, spark conversation in the lunchroom, connect with people on a personal level. Your role doesn't solely define you. Show people what makes you interesting - you are more than the work you do!
Confidence really is a skill to be nurtured and developed. Don't be too hard on yourself and set small, achievable goals to build your workplace confidence over time. Good luck!
If you feel like you're in need of a confidence boost, perhaps one of our career or leadership coaching sessions would help. Still unsure? Book a complimentary clarity call for a no obligation chat to see how we can best help you.