Everybody wants more confidence, but it’s not something you can simply whip up inside your brain. Or can you?
If you’d never ice skated before, you’d naturally be a little nervous going out on the ice for the first time. After a few times, when you got the basics down, you wouldn’t sweat it. You’d just lace up your skates, and look forward to having some fun going round and round in circles.
Until somebody told you that today was the day you’d be skating backwards. What?! There goes your confidence.
You may be supremely confident about one thing, but wholly unconfident about something else. If you bat right handed, and are facing a pitcher you easily hit from you’d feel pretty confident, right? But what if the coach told you that you had to hit left, and the game was on the line, and you HAD to get at least a double?
Confident? Not so much.
So, are you starting to see a pattern? It’s easy to feel confident doing things that you’ve already done. Sometimes this can be called “situational confidence,” or “performance confidence.”
But how do you feel confident doing something you’ve never done before?
Actually it’s not so hard. You just need a little practice, some forethought, and a bit of mental flexibility.
It’s true that humans are hard wired to feel comfortable in familiar situations, and nervous and anxious in unfamiliar situations. Advertisers have known this for years. Brand loyalty is one of the easiest ways for big companies to consistently make money. Once you buy Brand X, you’ll likely buy it your whole life.
We are definitely creatures of habit.
Ingredients Of Confidence
But we can also use our brains to switch meanings around. A situation could seem dangerous, or it could be an opportunity. The red light may mean you’re going to be late, but it also mean that you may have a fantastic idea while listening to talk radio while waiting for it to turn green.
We also have very selective memories. It’s been long known that eye witness testimony is the weakest and most unreliable part of any criminal case. Study after study has shown that our memories are largely made up, and we continuously “re-invent” them to suit our purposes.
If you want more confidence, you can easily use these facets of you brain to your advantage.
First step is to look at the situation you are going into. Give yourself a bit of mental planning time. Imagine how you’d like to behave. Imagine getting your outcome.
Next is to scan your history for anything that is even remotely similar. Take that memory, and spin it around a bit so you remember it as a massive success. Look in your past, from that memory onward, until you find something good that happened that can be attributed to that initial event.
Now, holding that successful memory in mind, see that is similar to the situation you are going into, see how it’s the same. Tell yourself that you’ve done this before, and you’ve had massive success.
In your mind, swish the past, successful memory, with the feeling of expectation of the situation you’re walking into. Swish then back and forth until that feeling of past success is placed right out in front of you, in the immediate future.
Step Right Up
Then step right into it, and claim your success.
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