Do you feel confident at work?
I’m not just talking about your ability to perform your professional duties, although that certainly counts; I’m talking about a solid, relentless conviction about your worth that guides your thoughts, emotions, and actions in every life area, including your career.
I spent way too many years shrinking myself to fit my surroundings. When I finally unlearned those self-sabotaging behaviors, everything shifted. If you’re stuck like I was, you can experience the same transformation. Stick with me, and I’ll show you how to build confidence in life (and at work)!
Why a Healthy Self-Esteem Matters
We can’t talk about how to build confidence at work without first acknowledging why it matters so much. Confidence isn’t just a great feeling; it’s a paradigm, which is a set of ideas, beliefs, and assumptions that dictate how you view life!
Psychologists and other cognitive science experts constantly publish materials indicating that your thoughts can influence your reality. While there are many things outside of your control, how you view what you can control makes all the difference. For instance, if you don’t think you can ever have a fulfilling career, you’re not very likely to put yourself out there and work toward building one. And the longer you stay stuck in the same place, the more you’ll see it as confirmation of your unworthiness.
This vicious cycle is impossible to contain within just one area of your life. If you don’t take control, low confidence will sabotage more than just your career!
The Real Reason You Lack Confidence
Low confidence comes from not knowing yourself.
When you don’t know yourself, it’s easy to create an impossible standard of who you think you should be, based on all the noise around you. That’s the danger of self-comparison; it causes you to overlook your greatest gifts and talents, derailing you from your true potential.
I’ll use myself as an example. I am an Enneagram 2 (i.e., a helper), meaning I get energy and inspiration from sowing into others and making them feel good about what I’ve done to support them. And I beat myself up with this knowledge for the longest time because it felt like everything was about me and boosting my ego!
Everything changed when I changed my lens and started seeing my personality type as my superpower. Rather than feeling guilty and ashamed, I focused on my ability to make a difference during my coaching calls, which created game-changing wins for my clients and myself.
And guess what? That builds my confidence every time.
3 Keys to Unlocking Unshakeable Confidence
So, what’s the best way to build confidence at work? While there’s no magic wand you can wave to dissolve feelings of low self-worth overnight, you can get off to a pretty good start with these three practices:
First, instead of fighting who you are, take some time to understand why you are the way you are. Building confidence in life and at work starts by accepting yourself instead of constantly trying to be like someone else.
Embrace Your Gift(s)
Make a decision to embrace your talents rather than belittling them. If you’re struggling to figure out what you’re good at, ask yourself:
- Where do you often see others coming to you for support?
- What comes naturally to you but is a struggle for others?
- What task makes you feel good about yourself after completing it?
Start looking for those moments and piecing them together to discover your superpower. Then, master it by using it wherever you can!
Watch Your Words
Lastly, words don’t just communicate ideas; they also create thoughts. Be careful of the words you use to describe yourself. This will take practice because we often don’t notice our self-deprecating language.
Step One: Know Thyself
Remember, it’s not just about figuring out how to build confidence at work; this affects every area of your life! Instead of thinking of confidence as a trait you either have or don’t have, picture it as a mechanism you can develop to achieve your greatest desires.
You learn to be more confident at work by learning about yourself first. The prompt questions I shared earlier are great warmup exercises, but I encourage you to take things much further than that.
How? I deep dive into my Get Unstuck Assessment in this post. Start there, then book a free career clarity consult with me, where we’ll turn all of these ideas into an action plan tailored specifically for your situation and goals!