Today I want to talk to you about something incredibly important.
For many entrepreneurs, I sincerely believe it’s the biggest obstacle on the path to the success you’re after. In fact, without this, I don’t see how you can be successful online or anywhere for that matter.
I’m talking about self-confidence.
The reason this is so important is that in order to follow that path to success, you have to have enough confidence to step into the unknown. I’ll write that again.
In order to follow your own path, you must have enough confidence to step into the unknown.
You have to be able to face the uncertain. You must leave behind what is secure and step into what is unknown. What happens when you lack the necessary self-confidence is you never take that first step. And you end up stuck.
Now “confidence” is an over-used word so it’s easy to dismiss the thought and imagine that it doesn’t apply to you. But there are two ways to get a handle on your own self-confidence.
- The first is to really think about it deep down. Don’t simply consider what you might say to others. Don’t gloss over it with “surface of the mind” type stuff. But really reflect deep down. How confident are you really in your ability to succeed. It’s a little unnerving, but that’s one way to determine how much of an issue this is for you.
- The second way is to think about the people who know you best. How much do they believe in you and your ability to succeed. Do they think it’s only a matter of time until you succeed? Or are they concerned about you abilities?
Don’t discount the importance of this. The opinions of others can have a great impact on your level of self-confidence.
The Symptoms of a Lack of Confidence
When you start to really drill down, you can see pretty clearly some of the problems – or more accurately the symptoms – a lack of confidence can cause.
It can cause procrastination. If you’re not confident in the outcome of your ability, then you’re less likely to take action. So it can be the root of procrastination.
It can be the root of information overload.
If you don’t feel confident in your ability to take action. You might believe you need to get more information to help you. So you search for more and more knowledge and ultimately get buried under a mountain of information overload.
Indecision. If you have difficulty making decisions, that can be traced back to a lack of confidence in your own ability to succeed in light of whatever decision that you’re considering.
The gap between what you know and what you do is often created by a lack of confidence in your ability to do what you know.
It stops you from taking action. It can cause you to become isolated. You withdraw trying to work things out when the best step would be actually to just move forward. Ultimately you end up second guessing yourself. I think just from that perspective alone, you can see how damaging it can be.
Now I’m not saying that every hesitation’s root comes from a lack of confidence. But what I am saying is that often times when the best approach would be to take action, you end up just waiting for something to happen.
Behaving Confidently Delivers Incredible Results…
When you do have confidence though – when you really believe that you will ultimately succeed – it ripples out into everything you do.
In fact, I was trying to think of someone I know who’s successful who doesn’t display the kind of confidence that I’m talking about. (And we’re not talking about confidence in all areas. We’re talking about your confidence in your ability to succeed.) And honestly, I can’t think of anybody I know who is successful that doesn’t have a huge level of confidence.
When you have that confidence, you believe that your efforts will pay off. And when you believe that your efforts will pay off, you’re willing to go for things; to step up and step out of your comfort zone and take action because you believe that your efforts will pay off.
You’re willing to commit to your goals. To work harder and longer because you believe your efforts will pay off. That, by itself, increases your odds of success. It also creates a self-reinforcing spiral. And you either spiral up or you spiral down.
When you have confidence, others can see it. We know from our genetic wiring that we can spot things that we can’t consciously understand, but unconsciously we pick up on lots of cues. And one of those is a noticeable level of confidence. When you display confidence, others are attracted to it. Your marketplace is attracted to it. Your prospects are attracted to it.
So I want to wrap it up here for now. But in the next post, we’ll talk about some confusion that blocks your self-confidence.