Questions about confidence come up all the time.

How do you get it? How do you be it?

There’s this idea that in order to build a reputation we need to exude confidence.

We think if we’re more confident, we’d be more successful. Things would be easier.

Maybe.

Or some women have an internal belief system that tells them they’re either a confident person, or not.

Here’s a thought for you to ponder though.

Confidence isn’t something you are or aren’t.

It’s something you learn and earn.

You can learn to be confident. It’s not a character trait that you were born with, or not. It’s a skill.

And just like any skill, it comes with practice, exposure and understanding.

Sure, confidence seems to come more naturally to some than others. But I think our judgements on other people’s confidence levels are mostly misinformed.

Seemingly confident people still feel self-doubt. Sometimes naivety masquerades as confidence. Sometimes what we see is false confidence.

And sometimes, a lack of confidence is actually

– a lack  of support
– a lack of context
– a lack of acceptance
– a lack of understanding
– a lack of practice
– a lack of belief based on all of the above.

Confidence breeds in action. The more action you take, even false starts and failures, the more confident you grow, because you can only be competent and good at something you do often or repeatedly.

There’s no magic elevator that’s going to take you straight to the top level of confidence. You have to level up one step at a time.

When it comes to feeling confident about discussing or showing what you do, the more you do it, the more confident you’ll feel.

There is no other way. You can’t think your way there. It is only in the doing that your confidence will grow.

You will find your voice as you go.