Have you ever felt out of your depth at work? Unsettled in a new position? Or doubting your ability to do the job well?
You’re not alone!
No matter your positions or rank within an organization, whether you’re a small part of a massive organization, the big boss, or venturing out as an entrepreneur, everyone goes through periods of self-doubt.
But while brief moments of low self-confidence are pretty normal, they can become a problem when they start affecting your decision-making, the way you interact with colleagues and clients, and worse case scenario, these can even start to negatively impact the quality of your work.
But not believing in yourself and what you bring to the table really doing yourself and all your potential a total disservice!
And we can’t have that now, can we? So we’ve put together some easily-actionable strategies aimed at helping you give your confidence a boost, and keep you giving your best, no matter your field or niche!
1. Don’t Doubt Yourself
First and foremost, if you want to boost your confidence, your first move is to not doubt yourself. I know this is usually easier said than done, but self-doubt can be a slippery slope into a lack of confidence if not curbed.
Again, everyone doubts themselves from time to time. But doubting every decision you make, questioning your every move, and second-guessing your opinions is not going to get anyone anywhere quickly.
Rather than doubting, lean into your knowledge, your experience, and your instincts. Rely on the fact that you’ve put hard work into equipping yourself with the skills you need to play your part and fulfil your responsibilities, and let this knowledge silence the doubt.
2. Focus On Your Self-Confidence
Oftentimes, a lack of confidence in the workplace stems from a general lack of self-confidence. So it follows that boosting your self-confidence can lead to greater confidence in your field.
This article from Very Well Mind entitled 6 Ways to Build Your Self-Confidence is a great place to start if the idea of boosting your self-confidence has resonated with you. It’s got sound, medically-reviewed advice, and the strategies are simple, but will prove to be really effective if implemented.
Knowing tools and techniques to boost your self-confidence will not only give you more confidence in the workplace, but can really add huge value to your life holistically.
3. Have A Plan
When things get hectic, you’re running from task to task, and you always feel like there’s never enough time to do all you need to do, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. And this feeling of never feeling quite on top of things can make you feel incompetent, which can serioulsy knock your confidence!
And that’s where planning can be a real help for boosting your productivity, and as a result, your confidence will get a major boost. By planning what you want to accomplish in a day, a week, or even the next three months, and you also planning how you plan on meeting these goals, you gain control over your time. And that sense of control translates into confidence – a win-win!
4. Sign Up to Newsletters
Niche-related newsletters are an excellent way to boost your confidence. And there are newsletters for everything! You can find those that specialize in giving a broad sense of what’s going on, where, and with whom, in your field. But you can also find newsletters that take subject-specific deep dives. So find newsletters that cater to your field and sign up to them…a ton of them!
These newsletters are an easy way to keep up-to-date with everything taking place within your industry or field, as well as specifically within your niche. Delivered straight to your inbox, these newsletters can give your knowledge a turbo-boost, and as we know, knowledge is power! And part of that power is an expansion of your confidence.
Related read: How To Successfully Grow [And Retain!] Your Mailing List
5. Make Learning a Habit
Following on from the above strategy, our next tip is to make learning a habit. We often feel insecure and lack self-confidence when we are dealing with the unknown. As has already been said, “knowledge is power,” and in this case, the more knowledge you have on your subject, the more confident you will feel in your role, whatever that may be. So make it a habit to constantly be learning. Read books on your topic. Broaden those horizons to reading about related niches.
No matter what field you’re in, in this day and age, developments and updates are happening at lightning speed, and so no one can really afford to not stay in the know and up to date with all that’s happening in your field. Because as soon as you start feeling like you’ve fallen behind with what’s happening, one of the first things to slip is your confidence. So make it your mission to never stop learning.
6. Listen To Podcasts
Podcasts are a marvellous resource to help you learn about almost anything! We love podcasts (I know, that’s stating the obvious, but we really do!) because of the incredible access they give to all sorts of information, introspection, as well as entertainment. And we really would recommend podcast listening as a means to fix many an ailment. But in this instance, podcasts serve two purposes.
First up, podcasts can offer great informational insights. There will, more than likely, be several super podcasts focused on your field or your specific niche. Whatever you’re looking for, you’re bound to find a great podcast about it. The more you listen, the more knowledge you can absorb about your industry, and the greater your confidence will become.
The second part of this advice is to find podcasts that will help boost your self-confidence. Podcasts focused on boosting your self-confidence are a great resource to have on hand when you just need that extra boost, or when imposter syndrome sneaks up on you.
Related read: How To Consistently Conquer Imposter Syndrome
7. Attend Industry Events
Industry events are great! Not only are they a ton of fun! But they can bump up your skillset and niche knowledge, and, they provide an incredible opportunity to network and make connections with others in your industry.
Events that cater specifically to your industry create a great space for you to interact, ask questions from leaders in your industry, and just learn and grow from others.
And with virtual attendance now an option, you’re able to “attend” industry events with very few limitations – be they a live recording or a panel discussion.
8. Take Courses
Expanding the knowledge you need to do your job well or fulfill your role will certainly give your confidence a boost. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again (and probably again…and again), knowledge is power. And in this case, it’s the power to position yourself in the best place possible.
Equipped with knowledge, you’ll be able to bring that much more value to the table. Whether it’s an increase in niche insight, or the development or enhancement of skills, you’ll gain heaps of confidence in knowing that you can do all you need to do that much better.
9. Ask Questions
Sometimes, when we’re in the workplace – whether it’s within an office environment or even on your own – we’re afraid to ask questions. For some reason or another, asking questions can be viewed as a sign of weakness.
But sometimes the best way to learn is to simply ask questions! Whether it’s from your colleagues, or others you’ve built relationships within your field, reach out and ask for advice! There is no such thing as a silly question! And, asking questions can actually show your proactiveness, commitment, and the willingness to learn, all of which are great qualities!
10. Know Your Strengths
Another great way to boost your confidence simply is to remind yourself of your strengths. You also have a wide set of skills, experiences, and talents, all of which are assets. Everything you’ve gone through, everything you’ve learned, your instincts and intuition, all the knowledge you have – all of these form part of your strengths. So when the self-doubt creeps in, remember these! And lean into them! And let these thoughts strengthen your confidence that you have what it takes to do all you need to, and do it well!
11. Work On Your Weaknesses
Let’s be honest. No one likes to dwell on their weaknesses. And the funny thing is, we never need to remind ourselves of our weaknesses the same way we do our strengths, do we? No. Because we are usually very well-acquainted with those as we tend to remind ourselves of them far more regularly than taking stock of all that we do well.
But rather than wallowing in our weaknesses, we can take stock of them, and then put strategies in place to work on them. And you’ll find that working on weaknesses actually feels pretty good! And that in itself can be a major confidence boost as you turn your weaknesses into more of your strengths.
12. Build A Network
Did you know you don’t have to go it alone? It’s a common misconception that confident people are the ones who “do it on their own” without support or help. However, truly confident people are those who are able to recognize the strengths, skills, and abilities of others, with the understanding that these in no way detract from their own. And from this understanding, you can begin to build a strong network around you.
Reach out to those you admire in your niche, your field, or even an aligned industry. Let them know what you value when it comes to what they’re doing, and find ways to connect with them. Not only could you make some amazing, genuine friendships along the way, but having strong people around you makes you stronger. This can provide fantastic opportunities, of course, but others who are succeeding can push you to new levels of creativity and passion, and this can greatly boost your confidence in your field.
Related read: Top Networking Tips – An Introvert’s Perspective
13. Fake It Till You Make It
Yup, I said it. Sometimes you just have to fake it until you make it! Too often, we let our insecurities and self-doubt keep us from even just giving something a go, which in itself is really the biggest failure – bigger than if you tried and failed, in fact! Sometimes you just have to pretend you know what you’re doing, and just do it! You may just surprise yourself! Obviously, you shouldn’t use this motto as a reason to be reckless or take unnecessary risks, but in most cases, there is no harm in trying and figuring it out as you go along.
A lack of confidence may be caused by a number of factors. It may be things outside of yourself, like the unknown, or the new, but it may also stem from inside of you, like a lack of belief in yourself, focusing on your weakness and not understanding or appreciating your strengths.
Feeling out of your depth no matter what field you are is no fun at all. The longer this feeling persists, the more it chips away at your confidence. And if left unchecked, you could start to believe the lie that you are, indeed, incompetent, which in turn will affect your ability to do your job. And when you make mistakes, this serves as a confirmation that you are incompetent! Talk about a vicious circle! (Psychologists call this phenomenon a self-fulling prophecy…you can check out more on that here.)
But if you address your confidence levels, and start believing in yourself and in your abilities more, you can get the scales tipping in your favor.
So whatever the cause of your lack of self-confidence, put these guidelines into practice, and you’ll be able to confidently do what only you can do!