Self-confidence refers to the trust a person has in his abilities and judgment, which enables him to express his knowledge and opinion freely with no or little difficulties.
Self-confidence is not a permanent state of mind – a person’s level of confidence may increase or decrease within a given period. Whiles some people are confident all the time, others tend to experience fluctuating situations and another group of persons have almost no confidence at all.
Self-confidence is dependent on various factors including a person’s temperament, society and culture, educational level, wealth, trends of successes and failures etc.
A highly confident person may begin to wilt in confidence after suffering consecutive failures but whatever the case may be, self-confidence is always a mind game; it is dependent on the mentality or mindset of the person. Anyone can become confident if he tries to.
Importance of self-confidence as a skill
Obviously, self-confidence comes along with tremendous advantages. Especially in your career path, it is one of the skills that is needed every step of the way. There are certain persons and job positions that require people with absolute self-confidence. Some of these are lawyers and judges, journalists, managers, public relations officers, actors, pastors, teachers, marketing managers and sales personnel etc.
Self-confidence is a skill that is needed by everyone. Below are some random benefits of self-confidence:
- Self-confident people are able to express themselves freely and create a lasting impression on the minds of employers during job applications and interviews.
- Because of the relationship between self-confidence and competency, people easily trust self-confident people. Due to this, substantial projects and valuable contracts are often awarded to highly confident employees.
- Self-confidence is the driving factor that spurs entrepreneurs and pioneers on to commence new projects.
- With a high level of self-confidence, you are able to take independent but great decisions in your organization or your field of work. You don’t worry your superiors with constant requests for directions and instructions.
How to improve self-confidence
As we talked about earlier, self-confidence is dependent on a number of factors. You may be confident today but what if something very embarrassing happens to you tomorrow? Will you still be as confident?
No matter what the circumstance may be, there a few tips that can help you maintain a good level of self-confidence.
- Prepare and equip yourself. Being sure of your capabilities and having a track record of successes is a natural way to raise your level of confidence. Your confidence is boosted when you are sure you will be successful in something because you’ve done it before. Train yourself till you have acquired all the needed skills in your specific field of work and take practice tests if possible. Successes in practice tests automatically raise your level of confidence.
- Have a positive self-perception. People, for various reasons, suffer inferiority complex. They have the perception that others are better than them. Many a time, this is due to the temperament of the person, especially phlegmatic people. Make a habit of thinking positively about yourself. Focus on your strengths and see your weaknesses as an opportunity to learn more. If someone is better than you in one aspect, take a look at their shortcomings and compare them to your strengths. Gradually, this exercise helps you develop an I am better than him mentality which affects you positively.
- Assertiveness. People are used to criticizing people and shunning their opinions. The more you allow your opinions to be ignored without taking a strong stance or defense, you begin to lose confidence in yourself. Stand by words and opinions, and try to explain every little reason for your actions or opinions. When people get convinced and accept your ideas regularly, your confidence level will be on the increase.