"Self-confidence comes from achievements and external validation.
"That's what I always thought.
I believed to feel confident, you needed to be really good at what you do and have other people notice and recognize you.
But as I progressed in my career, I started realizing this wasn't the whole story.
Even when I delivered on achievements and others told me I did a great job, my confidence didn't feel strong.
On many days, I still doubted myself, with symptoms of self-doubt and imposter syndrome kicking in. “Am I really good?”; “What if they find out I’m not as good as they think I am?”; “What if my next project is a failure?
”This set me on a discovery journey to deep dive into the art and science of self-confidence.
The more I learned about the topic, the more I understood that self-confidence is much more about how we feel about ourselves and how we talk to ourselves.
For the first time this discovery made me see that I'm the one (and only one) who can make myself feel confident.
To get deeper insights on the topic of self-confidence, I reached out to my friend Anemari Fiser, Engineering Leader & Career Coach.
Here are 4 tips she shared with me on nurturing self-confidence:
1. Take Responsibility for your Success: Instead of attributing your career growth to luck, take responsibility for it.
Reframe “It just happened to me” towards thinking about what you did to make this happen:
➡ What are your strengths and how have they contributed to your growth? ➡ What decisions along the way got you to where you are? ➡ What attitude helped you grow?
2. Keep a Brag List: Add 1 thing you are proud of at the end of every week.
Example: Got encouraging feedback from my manager and stakeholders about my delivery of project X.
3. Visualize your accomplishments: My favorite way is by creating a jar of your accomplishments.
Here's how: ➡ Get a jar on your desk (preferably see-through) ➡ Get post-its (preferably multiple colors) ➡ Every time you accomplish something that you are proud of (no matter how big or small) write it on a post-it and put it in the jar ➡ Review the post-its when you are feeling down
4. Ask for feedback: Ask 3 people you have worked with recently: “What is one thing I should continue doing?”
Remember self-confidence starts with self and then radiates out for others to feel.
Looking for additional insights on the topic? Follow Anemari here on LinkedIn. She posts daily on the topics of leadership, career development and soft skills development.