Confidence: A Skill?

Many people think of confidence as something someone does or does not possess. In reality, confidence is a skill that can be developed by anyone.

Confidence misconceptions

This misconception leads to others. When we view confidence as binary, a person possesses it or doesn’t, we fail to realize that it’s spectral and situational. That is, confidence is a spectrum that ranges from rarely confident to consistently confident and where one fits on that spectrum depends on the situation the person faces at that point in time.

Failure to see confidence as a skill also prevents us from looking for ways to develop greater confidence using skill development techniques that are readily available to us.

We also overlook the fact that there are three levels of confidence:

  1. Being consistently confident even when you have no background or experience.
  2. Converting confidence into influence and opportunity.
  3. Tapping into the power of your subconscious mind to achieve things you never thought possible.

Skill development

There are a myriad of tools available to assist us in developing new skills. To me the key, regardless of which approach you use, is that the steps for developing any skill be broken into small increments so that the person developing the skill can focus more narrowly and develop the skill more quickly.

Example

In the second level of confidence course, there are seven steps involved. Here’s how I structure the program.

The first week, I gave a brief overview of all seven steps and how we were going to achieve them. Then we go in depth on the first step. The assignment is for each participant to spend 15 minutes a day doing an exercise.

Each succeeding week, the participants share with each other what they learned from the exercise. That way they’re learning from one another as well as from their own experiences. Then we cover the next step and they get the next 15-minute exercise assigned to them.

We repeat this process for 7 consecutive weeks. Here’s the key, the actual class time is only 30 minutes per week for a group of 10. The real growth in confidence occurs in the 15-minute daily exercise.

So what does this mean for you?

For you

If you’d like to enjoy greater confidence, realize that it’s a skill. Think about how you developed other skills you possess…what steps you took that enabled you to get better and better at that skill. Then adopt a similar approach for confidence.

The advantages of using this approach are:

  • You’re already familiar with the approach, hence you avoid a new learning curve.
  • You’re more likely to act because you’re familiar with and trust the process.
  • You’re confident that it will work for you because it did in the past.

For our kids

First, let them know that confidence is a skill. Then walk them through the above process as I did for you above.

They’ll quickly discover that they can apply the approach to any situation in which they aren’t as confident as they’d like to be. It won’t take long and this new way of thinking will become automatic. They won’t have to think about how to approach a confidence issue, they’ll instinctively know what to do.

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