Often people tell me that they are “trying to stay positive,” which is not a bad statement to make, or hear. What is often more troubling is that when they speak, they speak defeat.
If you listen carefully you will hear words like:
Not that these words shouldn’t be used, but when used in short phrases describing situations or potential outcomes they often sound like negativity or defeat.
This leads to the point about confidence. Confidence or self-confidence is something that we develop. It is not genetically created, we build it. Many believe that it is built from two primary factors, self-efficacy and self-esteem.
What is so alarming is that people often don’t remember the things they have done that are great, they tend to dwell on those mistakes, errors, or when they have let themselves or others down. They may develop the attitude that you, can’t, won’t, and never will be able to accomplish goals, a dream, or success.
They only hear negativity in the voices of others. Both intentionally and unintentionally sometimes other people bring you down. Their words can hurt, stifle progress, and certainly help you to inappropriately set self-limiting beliefs.
Confidence is built, both by what we hear and what we say. Everyone has good days and bad days, they have times of accomplishment, and moments of shortcomings. Confidence will never be built with a focus on defeat.
To accomplish more and build confidence you should focus on what worked well, what created positive momentum, and what efforts have propelled you one step closer to your goals. It is important to consider and listen to feedback of what didn’t work so well, but that must be used to craft your next move forward, not retract or establish new lower limits.
Listen to yourself. What do you hear?
Photo Credit: Saad Faruque