"With confidence, you have won before you have started." -- Marcus Garvey
Confidence is often the single differentiator between people who get what they want and people who don't. Those who think and believe they can do something -- run a marathon, start an entrepreneurial venture, ask someone out (and have them say yes), win a competitive promotion, fit into their pre-pregnancy jeans, build a fun social circle, well... they do it.
Our mind is a very powerful tool, and the impact of our thoughts and words cannot be underestimated. Our thoughts create our emotions. Our emotions create our actions. Our actions create our life. Confident people have greater control over their minds and have tuned their mental station to one of "I can."
Here are nine things that confident people do that you can apply to your life:
1. Do not overcomplicate. You want something? Great! Create a plan to make it yours. Keep your eye on the prize and do not get distracted by other peoples noise or by your own ability to over-think.
2. Focus on what you want. Confident people keep a positive vision in mind of the future. They expect good things to happen to them, and as a result they do, as expectation is a very powerful force.
3. Act as if it's already yours. People who are self-assured allow their language and actions to be in line with their outcome. This inspires confidence in others.
4. Use words with intention. Consider the difference with two people discussing their new blog. One could be, "Yes, I am a blogger. You like vintage purses too? Awesome! We must connect -- check out the new images I posted at..." vs. "Well, I am trying to blog but am not sure I am doing it right (nervous laugh)." Who do you think gets the most views and shares?
5. Listen but don't pay heed to others' opinions. Other people are well meaning and sometimes err on the side of caution. Confident people listen to other people but do not let their difference of perspective take them off track. It's your life!
6. Dedicate time to what matters. Confident people are happy to say no to things to make sure they have time and energy for their priorities. Funnily enough, people treat them with more respect as a result.
7. Act humble. Confident types don't talk endlessly about their successes. I was once at a large corporate event and I was speaking to an outgoing and likeable woman who said she "worked in publishing." I found out later that evening that she was the editor-in-chief of one New York's most influential magazines. Confident people let their success speak for itself and don't need to vocalize it.
8. Know failure is sometimes inevitable and don't fear it. Worrying about failure can keep us from doing anything at all. Confident people are still confident even when they fail. When the chips are down they know it will pass.
9. Repeat all of the above! Confidence building takes a lifetime. The more we practice confidence as an attitude, the easier it becomes.
The most successful and happy people are not born the most rich, beautiful or talented. They just believe in themselves and go for what they want. Confidence is also a highly attractive quality in others as we all secretly aspire to have more self-assurance. "I can" and "I can't" thoughts create very different emotional spirals, as the mind is very obedient and follows whichever path we direct it. Which do you choose?