Welcome back! We are continuing our dive into top leadership traits for 2021, this week, we are covering CONFIDENCE!
(You can catch the previous top leadership traits here if you missed them.)
Confidence in leadership is a two-sided coin. The first side is what every leader aspires to, and that is to have the confidence of the people they lead, which is critical because it’s tied to your effectiveness as a leader, the engagement of your team, and the loyalty and trust that allows you to empower others and make an impact.
The second side of this coin (and the one you have the most control over) is your own confidence in yourself, and without which creates a shaky foundation for others to be confident in you.
If you don’t believe in yourself, why should anyone else?
In my Women’s Leadership Masterclass last week, What You Don’t Know About Yourself and How It’s Holding You Back (you can catch the replay HERE), we talked about how the work you do on yourself affects how you show up as a leader. You are the foundation of how you lead others. What you hold inside of you is amplified in your leadership, and confidence is a BIG piece of it.
Every single conversation I have with clients and with the audiences I speak to involves confidence. I ask people, “What gets in the way of you getting what you want in your life and career?” Every time confidence is brought up.
Confidence is defined as the feeling or belief that someone can rely on something. In this case, that belief is in yourself.
Here are 3 things I want you to know about confidence so that you can start to do something about building more of it.
1. Confidence isn’t just your issue.
Confidence is something that almost every woman has an issue with. It can be to varying degrees on a spectrum, but it’s a big factor, even for people you think wouldn’t have an issue with it. If you haven’t read the book, The Confidence Code, it’s a must. Katty Kay and Claire Shipman dug deep into confidence. They uncovered world-class athletes, prominent women in politics, high-level women in academia, high-ranking women in the military, and so many more that all deal with confidence issues. It’s not a matter of whether you have issues with it or not; it’s a matter of when. It is contextual. If you want to cut straight to the chase to the studies contained in the book, this article in The Atlantic sums the research up nicely.
2. Confidence is a process.
It’s not something you’re born with or not, it’s something you develop, and as you continue to grow and evolve in your life and work, confidence issues keep showing up. One way it may show up in your life is because you need to speak up for yourself. The days of being a good or even great worker and hoping that someone will notice is flawed thinking. That ship has sailed! No one knows the ideas that you have, what you want to achieve, what you want to contribute better than you. You have to be willing to speak up and say it or make the ask. Otherwise, the answer is always NO.
3. Confidence is already within you.
People tend to think of confidence as “all or nothing,” or they have it or they don’t, and that’s just not true. Confidence is contextual, and because you have experienced it in one area of life, it means that the skills transfer and can be utilized in others. There are things in your past that you have handled and come through to the other side. It may have been the death of someone very close, a divorce, getting laid off, raising children by yourself, advocating for what you believe, protecting those you love, and so many more. Those circumstances that challenge us to change ourselves for the better and the skills we adopt to get through these circumstances become part of our toolkit. They absolutely transfer to other situations. What can you pull out of this toolkit to help you in current situations?
Confidence is a journey and one that you must be willing to begin every time you encounter a situation beyond your comfort zone.
Confidence is the willingness to at least try.
Until next time, here’s wishing you the Clarity and the Confidence you deserve.