Everyone wants to know how to gain confidence. You may want to feel confident about launching your own business, taking control of social situations, or even approaching strangers and introducing yourself.
If you haven’t done it before of course you’re going to be scared. We all have a fear of the unknown and we need that extra boost of self-confidence to help us get started. But how do we get it?
A common answer people come up with is to simply, learn more about what they want to do. If you want to get the courage to speak in front of a crowd or to talk to someone you’ve never met before you may choose to seek out the advice of people who have already been there and done that.
It makes sense to look for a mentor after all these are the people who have already experienced everything and know the ropes. That is why the average person ends up buying books on how to gain confidence and how to improve their life.
While reading up on the latest ways of getting ahead is going to help you excel at whatever you choose to devote your life to, it won’t help you one bit if you don’t have confidence to put what you’ve learned into action.
“The greatest barrier to success is the fear of failure.” Sven Goran Eriksson
Courage is not something you can learn by reading. If all you are doing is taking in new information and buying new courses on how to do something well, that alone is not going to get you the confidence you need to take the first step. Sometimes you need to put that book down and start making things happen by your own hand.
Unfortunately, most people seem to overcomplicate this. If you do a search for “how to get confidence” you’ll find that most of the results will give you a long list of things to do, which are magically suppose to make you more likely to take action and be confident when you need to be.
You’ll hear that all you need to do to get confidence is to “visualize your success,” “learn the steps you need to take,” and “dress nicely and work out”
In reality these things don’t help you; they just confuse the heck out of you. If you see a stranger you want to talk to and all you are thinking about is, “Did I visualize how this is going to go,” or “Do I remember the perfect lines to start a conversation with someone” that is only going to make you think way too much and ruin your chances of success.
When it comes to confidence learning too much is defiantly a bad thing because it leads to over thinking. Over thinking leads to fear, and fear is not going to make it any easier on you. With that said, how CAN you get confidence?
To make it as simple as possible there is one little saying that sums up everything you need to know about confidence.
“First You Do The Thing Your Scared Of, Then You Get The Courage”
That’s it, it’s a simple equation. Yet most people have it backwards. They assume that in order to do the thing they are scared of they must first get the confidence to do it, then it will be easier to do. That doesn’t logically make sense, how can you get the confidence to do something you haven’t done before? If it’s new, it’s scary.
The only way to build confidence when doing it in the future is to start doing it now. How confident are you at ordering from a restaurant? What about swimming in the deep end of the pool? I’m guessing you’re pretty confident about both of these things. Why? Because you’ve done them about a million times before!
“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” Eleanor Roosevelt
You’ve probably ordered food at a restaurant more times than you can remember, you’ve probably known how to swim for most of your life. It’s no longer scary once you’ve done it already.
It’s the same in all areas of your life. A lack of confidence usually means a lack of experience. If you want to get confidence all you have to do is get some experience with it. You need to start taking risks and going after things that scare the heck out of you. Doing what you are afraid to do is the only way to grow in this world and start to become a better stronger person.
Next time you are afraid to move forward and take action think to yourself, “what is the worst that can happen if I mess up and make a mistake?” Unless you are diffusing an A-bomb to save New York City it probably isn’t going to be a big deal.
You can recover from almost any mistake that you make in this life, but you can’t recover from a lost opportunity. You will never learn by not trying and you will never succeed if you let your fear get the better of you.
“If you can’t you must” Anthony Robbins
You are capable of doing a lot more then you think. Learn to live with that fear that you get every time you see a new situation and start doing what you know you need to be doing. Only then will you be able to get the confidence you need in order to do it again and again. Life is not that scary, it’s out perception of life that makes us freak out.
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