How to Stop Worrying and Feel More Confident

You know in your mind that you are really good and you have something valuable to add to a meeting. But when it comes time to speaking up or stepping up, you don’t feel it in your bones.

You start to have that inner debate: should I go for it, or not? Do others know more than I do… Do I know enough…what if I am wrong? Am I the right person to speak up?

Self-doubt and second-guessing are based on fear. Your view of the situation makes the other person ‘one up’ (they know more than you, are in a position to judge you) and you ‘one down’. Then you are nervous about how you will “perform” and be judged.

You reason it’s better to not speak up or step up, then you prevent others from having the opportunity to judge you. You ‘win’ the battle of not getting possible negative feedback, but you ‘lose the war’ by not moving your career forward and bringing the full extent of your talents.

Here are ways to shift from worried to worthy so you can show up confident:

Help others – ask yourself, “who am I dealing with?” 
Maybe it’s your clients or patients who will benefit from something you recommend. Maybe it’s your boss or colleagues who will use the information you share or read a report you put out. In a study leaders at the U.S. military academy, the #1 trait of the most successful leaders was the “capacity to love.” Seem counterintuitive? What can you learn from them?

Take yourself out of it.
Pour yourself into bringing value to your relationships. Let the thought of helping them get you over your doubt. Don’t allow yourself to ‘get in your own way’ as long as you can help others. Trust your own judgment

Try this:
Keep a 4 column log of situations in which you have a point of view or an intuition:

Column 1 – what is the situation?

Column 2 – what is your intuition?

Column 3 – did you follow it?

Column 4 – what was the outcome?

As soon as you have 10 situations logged you can start to look for patterns. Does it work out when you follow your intuition? Does the situation blow up when you don’t?

In the future, instead of saying “I’m not sure if I should speak up”, you can say, I have a 90% chance of the situation working out when I follow my intuition.
No more need to second guess and doubt yourself. Bring your end users and your organization the best of you and feel proud of all the ways you can help. Use these strategies to be confident about speaking up and stepping up!

 

 Originally published at Women Working
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