I often heard my mum say:
“You need to blow your own trumpet – if you don’t blow it, nobody will blow it for you”
It was great advice and yet I didn’t take it on board in my early years and at the start of my career. It’s all about confidence and I realise now that although people often see me as confident, inside I’m really not although I’ve got better at ‘faking confidence’ as the years have gone on …
What I’ve now found is that having ‘faked confidence’ for years, even when I didn’t ‘feel confident’, my confidence has grown and now I really FEEL much more confident and hopefully this Manchester Lifestyle Blogger is beginning to reveal her ‘Brilliance Within’ after years of hiding it away!
So what is The Secret that makes some people more confident than others and enables them to hold such a deep belief about their abilities that they can shout it to the world, whereas many of us “hide our light under a bushel”?
Earlier in my career, I noticed that it wasn’t always the best person that got the job, it was often the person who had the confidence to put themselves forward. Sometimes the ‘best person’ for the job wouldn’t have the confidence in their own abilities and didn’t even apply for the job….
I was definitely amongst this group until I was about 35 and until I realised that my mum’s words were right – People normally believe what you tell them so by being aware of what your strengths are yourself, you are able to more confidently tell others what your strengths are..
If you don’t know what your strengths are yourself, how can you ‘blow your own trumpet’? So what steps can you take to improve your self confidence? Here are 8 tips that have helped me to develop my inner confidence:
- Review and recognise your own strengths – know what you’re good at. Ask those around you and those you trust to be honest with you what they think your strengths are – they will probably highlight things you hadn’t even thought of..
- Review the areas in your life where you feel ‘less confident’ and make a point of developing your knowledge and skills in these areas. It’s surprising how others will help you to develop and improve if you just ask for some help…
- Consider what you would like to do – try some new things and expand your horizons which will help you ‘grow’ as a person.
- Create a Personal Development Plan – what training could you go on that would help you to achieve your development goals? – This doesn’t just have to relate to work goals, it can be around developing your personal confidence and communication skills. There are lots of free courses available both ‘on line’ and ‘in person’ that can help enhance your confidence. I’ve attended lots of ‘free’ taster courses over the years and they boosted my confidence greatly..
- Don’t wait to be ‘perfect’ – most other people aren’t ‘perfect’ either and you may be waiting forever and miss lots of amazing opportunities to expand your life by waiting until you can do something ‘perfectly’…
- Dress to impress and stand out from the crowd for the right reasons! Although you may say to yourself that it’s not your ‘appearance’ but what you know that should count, the reality is that first impressions create lasting impressions and they do count for the majority of people. So for example, if you are thinking of applying for a promotion, it may be a good idea to review your wardrobe in advance of the application – start dressing ‘smarter’ so you stand out from the crowd. What are other people who are already working in that job that you’d like wearing – you may need to review your style…
- Body Language is SO important! If you walk into a room with your head held high, shoulders back and imagine yourself being stretched upwards so you ‘walk tall’, you will appear more confident to others and you will automatically feel more confident. People believe what they say and body language is definitely something that you can learn and work on that will enhance your confidence and how others perceive you.
- Think about other people who display the qualities and confidence you admire – study how they behave, how they communicate and what their body language is. If you study those who ‘have confidence’, you can start to emulate these qualities in your own life.
Self Awareness is key to starting to develop your self confidence. If you are clear about where your strengths lie, you can look for opportunities to start promoting these to others around you both at work and within your personal relationships too.
We often tend to focus on our ‘weaknesses’ and therefore taking note of what these are and then developing an action plan (your development plan) to see what you can do to improve in these areas will help to improve your knowledge, skills, communication in these areas and thus improve your self confidence. Maybe then you will be able to:
Take my mum’s advice on board and BLOW YOUR OWN TRUMPET!