How you see yourself is directly related to your level of success
By Marianne Renner: Leadership Coach, Speaker, Author
We’re taught from a very young age to be humble, not to be prideful, or toot our own horns. And although I believe those are valuable codes of conduct, my experience is that more people struggle with the opposite problem.
I am continually amazed at the incredibly high potential that resides inside so many people, whether they be clients, prospects or associates, who don’t see what I see. They don’t see the huge potential of all that they’re capable of achieving.
I once had a client who had a number of strengths and accomplishments but confessed to me that he couldn’t think of one thing he was proud of in any area of his life. What struck me as I talked to him, was that he had so many gifts. It was as if he had this beautiful light inside him but could not find the light switch to turn it on. So not only was he unable to see this light, but he would never be able to share it with the rest of the world.
We are limited in our success and achievements only by our own thoughts and beliefs.
When is the last time you thought about your goals, your dreams, your big visions for your future? What is stopping you from going after those dreams right now?
Ok, after you answer that question with any number of rational ideas, ask yourself again. What’s REALLY stopping you?
Is it a lack of belief that you are capable of achieving those dreams? Are you telling yourself it’s not possible?
We all have stories that we tell ourselves and replay over and over in our minds. After a number of repetitions, those stories develop into deep beliefs. “I’m not smart enough, I’m not good enough, I’m too old, I’m too young, I’m not talented enough, it’s too late, I don’t have the right degree.”
These are phrases I hear from people who cannot seem to move forward in their careers or start their dream businesses. The truth is, it’s not the facts behind the statements that are holding people back. Rather the actual beliefs are what keep them stuck.
The good news is that beliefs can be changed.
In order the change our beliefs, we need to change our thinking and focus on our successes, accomplishments and untapped abilities.
I have a friend who is a very successful, high achieving leader in her organization. I often hear her say, “I am a strong, smart woman.” I remember the first time I heard her say that. I thought to myself, “gee, are we supposed to talk like that? Weren’t we taught not to be prideful or boastful?”
But when I look at her, she is anything but prideful or boastful. In fact, she’s a stellar example of a leader and person of high character. She is kind, humble, generous, and compassionate. And yes, she is a strong, smart woman. There is not an ounce of arrogance or pride in her intention. Rather, there is a deep, solid confidence.
One main key to achieving our goals and dreams is believing that we are capable. We must see the potential in ourselves. And we must learn to create mental stories that support the success we want to see. We need to tell ourselves these empowering stories and repeat them often.
I’m talking about building good, old-fashioned self-confidence.
So right about now, I get asked, “well, Marianne, I agree with you, but what if I just don’t feel that way about myself? What if I just don’t feel confident?”
The answer is that like anything else, it takes practice to build those mental muscles and to develop a new, habitual mindset.
Here are three actions you can take to improve your self-confidence and develop a mindset of success that will help you achieve your goals:
- Create a “limiting beliefs” worksheet (or download my personal Limiting Beliefs worksheet). On the left side of a piece of paper, write down the limiting belief that you have. On the right side, write down the new, empowering belief to replace it. Be sure to read your list of beliefs and repeat your empowering beliefs daily.
- Start a success journal. Every day document your successes from the day or previous day, and congratulate yourself for all the wins no matter how big or small. This will help to remind you of how successful you are. We tend to focus on the one or two areas where we may have fallen short, rather than the dozens of successes we experience in one single day. To make this even easier, I have created the Chaos to Clarity success journal to help you stay on track.
- Practice a bit of “fake-it-til-you-make-it.” You may have to practice repeating your empowering beliefs for a while even if they don’t feel true. But I promise if you “fake it” long enough, you will eventually “make it” to the point where you develop a deep, inner knowing and connection to your empowered statements.
The key to using these tools successfully will be to perform the activity every day. It’s better to choose one of the tasks above and do it daily, than to do all three periodically. This is because daily practice is the only way to develop habits. And you need to first create a habit so that this thinking becomes automatic. Once it becomes automatic, it becomes part of your belief system.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on self-confidence. What has been your experience?
What if we are the lion, and look in the mirror to see a small kitten… As in we can great potential but don’t see it.
Hey Norja! Yes, that is so often the case due to our limiting beliefs. Here’s a tool that can help you root out those limiting beliefs and replace with new, empowering beliefs. I hope this adds value to you today!