In continuing our focus on hands-on tools to raise your Confidence, below is another strategy adapted from Leading with Emotional Intelligence. I use this with leaders to help them identify strengths and success patterns that may not be obvious to them. People always feel good highlighting their strengths and this exercise gives them a reminiscent clue to some of their current achievements. You would hold the conversation with them after they finish and use a subset of the questions below.
To enhance your confidence, write a log of past successes, broken into a chronology by age bracket. We all have had many successes in our lives which are easy to forget or minimize. These successes can leave footprints for future successes. You can build your confidence by simply reviewing the list.
Think of successes, activities, or events when you were proud of what you accomplished. These are the building blocks for confidence. Often people don’t remember successes in the first 5 years.
Age in Years:
Go through your life from the time you were a young child and write down key successes for each age bracket. For example, you had a best friend in kindergarten; you had a lead role in a play in school; you won a Little League baseball game with your pitching; you received an award for a story you wrote in school; you were selected to give an orientation speech to incoming students; you were the editor of your high school yearbook; you were a cheerleader; you had good grades and won an award in college; you were selected team leader in your first job; you presented at a conference; you got an advanced degree; you started your own company; you wrote a book; and so on.
Now analyze your successes by answering these questions:
- What efforts did you make to achieve this success?
- What was your preparation?
- What obstacles did you have to overcome?
- How did you feel about yourself afterward?
- What did people say about your achievement?
- How do you minimize your successes?
- What patterns or themes emerge from these successes?
- What key best practices or guidelines emerge for us in future endeavors?
- What do you need to do to build and broaden these successes?
Make a plan on what steps you will take to continue and enhance on these successes. Then share with one person who can be a support and also hold you accountable for these actions.
Remember “the manager default is to find fault.”
You can stay on automatic or be more conscious and in charge of your life and contributions.
Stay tuned for next week’s Coach’s Corner!