What is confidence? We tend to think of it as a personality trait or an emotional response, but my experience is that it isn’t as passive or reactive as that. Real confidence is a capability, and when you know how to create that capability for yourself, you can have it in endless supply.
What you can achieve when you have confidence
When you have confidence as a daily resource, you can learn anything, respond to anything, adjust to anything, and achieve anything.
Confidence is the ability to transform fear into focused and relaxed thinking, communication, and action. It turns dangers into opportunities, obstacles into innovations, weaknesses into advantages, and setbacks into breakthroughs.
Many people assume, then, that entrepreneurs must be confident just to get by. That’s true, and it’s also true that as your business and the size of your opportunities grow, your confidence needs to grow along with them. Even successful entrepreneurs can experience crises of confidence where they feel overwhelmed and unable to make decisions or take action.
The main reason you lose confidence
Contrary to popular belief, the biggest obstacle to confidence is not unfavorable circumstances, but rather bad measurement: comparing yourself to others or against some perfect ideal instead of working with the actual material you have at hand—your unique advantages, situation, and experience.
With confidence on your side, the biggest external setbacks can offer the biggest opportunities for positive transformation, even leading to leaps forward in profitability and productivity, if you’re in the mental state to be able to deal with them creatively.
The purpose of generating your own confidence, then, is to put your mind into a productive state so you can see the possibilities at hand and create strategies to take advantage of them.
How you can improve your confidence every day
Here’s one simple strategy for making confidence a regular part of your day: For the next 21 days, at the end of each day, simply write down three wins for the day. They can be anything you achieved that day or anything that felt like a win to you.
Then write down three wins you’d like to have tomorrow. The purpose of this is to set up the game so you’re always winning. Do it even if it seems difficult or trivial at first.
After a few days, you’ll notice that your mind is looking for wins to add to the list. The simple act of looking for the positive will change your mindset so that you focus on progress rather than everything that’s not ideal yet. Once you get on a roll with this, there’s a natural tendency to want to keep your “win streak” going.
If you have an iPhone or iPad, we have a free app that makes it easy to record and save your daily wins called just that: WinStreak.
When you focus on constantly protecting and increasing your confidence, everything else becomes easier because you’ve made the foundation for all your other successes more solid and predictable. You have the best access to all your talents and resources, which lets you achieve dramatically bigger and better results, and allows you to keep moving forward and inspiring confidence in others even in the midst of change and upheaval.
Have you been on a win streak? Tell us in the comments how it’s going!
About the Author
Dan Sullivan is the world’s foremost expert on entrepreneurship in action. He is the founder of The Strategic Coach Inc. and creator of The Strategic Coach® Program. Visionary, creative, wise, playful, and generous, he is a true champion of entrepreneurs worldwide.Follow on Twitter More Content by Dan Sullivan