Hello SOTGC community,
Did you know that your confidence level and your competence connect equally to your success? As women, we often think if we keep our heads down and work harder that success inevitably follows. We believe competence at work is the key to success. However, our male colleagues have a secret to success: it’s confidence.
In Katty Kay and Claire Shipman’s article, they discuss the “Confidence Gap” between women and men and how it adversely affects female promotion in the workplace: “No wonder that women, despite all our progress, are still woefully underrepresented at the highest levels. All of that is bad news. The good news is that with work, confidence can be acquired. Which means that the confidence gap, in turn, can be closed. ” (you can read their full article here, it is fabulous: http://www.theatlantic.com/features/archive/2014/04/the-confidence-gap/359815/)
So how do we end this cycle of low confidence? Try these tips and tactics:
1. Retrain your inner dialogue. You know that voice in your head that says, “you’re not good enough” or “you can’t do that”? Your internal dialogue eventually becomes your actions. Make the dialogue what you want to see in your life, even if you don’t believe it at first. Replace those negative thoughts, each time they occur, with “I am more than good enough” and “I can do that.” Over time your inner critic will become quiet, and more often than not, you’ll hear your inner “cheerleader!”
2. Help and uplift others. I have always found that helping those around me to feel more confident in turn makes me a more confident person. Is there someone you can mentor? Do you have a skill you could share with others? What strengths do you have that your coworkers could benefit from?
3. Find at least one thing you know you are good at and try to do it each day. Are you a soccer player? Join your local soccer league! Do you play guitar? Make sure to practice at least once a day. Your hobbies and activities can give your brain the extra boost it needs to remember that you are successful, even if times are hard at work.
4. “Fake it ’til you make it.” Still not feeling confident? You’re not alone. Even Sheryl Sandberg, author of Lean In and COO of Facebook says, “There are still days I wake up feeling like a fraud, not sure I should be where I am.” Think about those around you who you characterize as confident. Before reacting to your self-doubt, ask yourself, “How would my confident friend handle this situation?”
Have you experienced self-doubt or confidence issues? How did you overcome it? Continue the conversation with me on Twitter @ryangreenonline or post to my facebook https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100007156953049
Ryan Green works for a global leader in the medical device industry and is passionate about writing and advocating key women’s issues. You can follow Ryan on Twitter @ryangreenonline and Facebook https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100007156953049.
Kay, Katty; Shipman, Claire. The Confidence Gap. http://www.theatlantic.com/features/archive/2014/04/the-confidence-gap/359815/. Theatlantic.com 4/14/14. Accessed 5/2/14. Online.
Errey, Steve. 63 Ways to Build Confidence. http://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifehack/63-ways-to-build-self-confidence.html. Lifehack.com Accessed 6/10/14. Online