August 4


A Checklist On How To Gain Confidence

Most stories, they follow the same structure. Youtube videos are abound with examples of how certain movies are basically the same: .

In most stories there is a point called the ‘Critical choice’. This is where the protagonist has to decide whether to continue down a certain path or make a decision that could potentially change their life forever.

In the film ‘The Equilizer’, Denzel Washington’s character had to decide whether to stay ‘the grey man’, an ordinary guy on the street, or exact revenge on the Russian Mobsters who put his friend in hospital. This would mean returning to a world he thought he left behind.

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In real life. We face the same critical choice points; Do I leave my job now and pursue my dream of owning my own business? Do I lose weight or potentially encounter another humiliating moment?

We Love Familiarity

With confidence, I have found there is an element of familiarity and comfort that comes with having perceived low confidence. You may be unhappy, you may say ‘If I had more confidence I’d [Insert desirable outcome here’]. Yet there is a comfort that comes with experiencing ‘normal’.

When you decide upon another path, it is unfamiliar, it is uncomfortable at first AND it could be the very route you need to take to experience what you want.

When you hit that threshold that prompts change, there are certain conditions that, by being in place, make the process of change easier than just jumping in blind, hitting every roadblock in the way.

The following is a checklist of question you can regularly ask yourself on your pursuit to consistently gain confidence.

Before you start, it is important to recognise the triggers all around you that prompt the feelings of low confidence within you.

Watch Those Triggers

In his book ‘Scar Tissue’, Anthony Kiedis relates a story of how he had been off drugs for a couple of years when he went for a regular dental check up. The dentist gave him novocaine.

As soon as he got out the dental chair, he went and scored drugs prompting a weekend drug binge. This is the power of triggers!

The purpose of the checklist is to create a new line of attention. You see, your brain loves habitual behaviour, it means as little energy is being used as possible.

When you are creating a new normal (low confidence to high self-confidence) it requires a new way of looking at the world.

This means putting conditions in place to ensure you don’t slipped back into the old familiar way of behaving.

The Checklist On How To Gain Confidence

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1. Do I have a Clear idea of what I’ll notice to signify my increasing confidence?

It is important to realise what you want to increase confidence for. What you will notice differently about your everyday life that informs you that something has changed.

2. How have I altered the things in my environment that are known to trigger feelings of perceived low confidence?

There are many triggers that can prompt the internal feelings of low confidence. These triggers can come from the environment around you. By noticing these triggers you are able to make the subtle changes to your environment that can make dramatic difference. An example of this has been the introduction of apps like ‘Rescue Time’ that eliminate distractions online to prevent procrastination.

3. Do I deliberately do something everyday that works towards my increasing confidence?

Whilst part of confidence is attitude (covered extensively in Confidence Reloaded), the brain needs memory markers to validate it. For example, Elon Musk can talk confidently about business and be a confident individual not just because he thinks it, but because he has amassed a whole collection of memory markers (experience) to validate that thinking.

4. Do I have an external representation of what I am increasing my confidence for?

Increasing confidence is a process and there are ups and downs along the way that can make you lose sight of why you are doing what you are doing. Having an external representation can help remind you what all this is for. A ‘vision board’ does this to a certain extent but a simple statement written on a piece of paper in a place you see regularly will be sufficient.

5. Do I regularly check-in with myself to amplify my ‘mini-wins’?

It always amazes me how many mini successes people omit from their lives because they are so fixated on what they lack. It goes back to the trap of “I’ll be happy when I earn 6 figures”. How many successes do you think you’d have along the way, but gets cast aside because you are not where you want to be yet? It is the same with confidence and what you want confidence for. Recognise overtly those mini-wins on a weekly basis and you will find yourself experiencing more energy, more opportunities and more importantly less destructive on yourself.


career Performance, gain confidence, Psychology

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  • Those ‘mini-wins’ are so crucial. They happen every day and we should celebrate them, no matter how big or small. Even if it feels like we messed up throughout the day, the fact that we made it to the end of the day should be a mini-win. Not giving up is a win. I think some people don’t celebrate how strong they are as they work their way through a life challenge.

    Thanks for this article; it was so well written!!

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