You recently asked me to write about “confidence.” I am an expert on this subject namely because I grappled with insecurity and have worked to overcome it.

Here is my take:

1. Confidence comes from self-acceptance. We are born “confident.” Then, our confidence gets sucked out of us by someone or something leading us to believe that we are “not enough” until we are x, y, and z. You develop confidence by believing in yourself and accepting yourself where you are at – right now. Your gifts and talents are valuable now and will grow over time but they are perfect for the clients you are meant to work with – right now.

2. Confidence comes from getting out of your own way. When you align yourself with a higher purpose, sharing that message becomes more powerful than your insecurities and discomfort. Ultimately – the way I see it – it’s about that pivotal moment on your deathbed (which can come at any time) knowing that you did the best you could to leave the world a better place. It’s not about you – and yet – it is about you. I believe that we are a conduit, vessel, and messenger for something that is bigger than us. Operating from your ego will keep you scared and stuck. Your soul is connected to the whole. It knows the way if you create the space to really do your self-reflection and listen.

3. Confidence comes from getting out of your comfort-zone. In order for things to be different, you’ll have to be different. You’ll have to do things that are uncomfortable and stretch you and help you grow and develop into the person who has the life you want. That may include becoming more comfortable with public speaking, videos, improving your relationship skills, business and leadership skills, etc. You’ll have to put yourself “out there.” Becoming more visible carries a risk of rejection, failure, public ridicule and humiliation. The more you do things that scare you and overcome them, the more you develop confidence in your abilities. You’ll have to do things before you are “ready.” Like a muscle, confidence grows with repetition, practice, and conditioning.

A problem I see is in the world that incompetent people seem to have all the confidence and are making poor leadership decisions on our behalf while intelligent people seem to be stuck in over-thinking, over-analysis, self-doubt, and inaction.< This may be a side-effect of highly developed critical thinking.You can become highly critical of everyone and everything- especially of yourself. Self-judgment will keep you stale and stuck. Love yourself enough to invest in yourself.