The only people that don’t admit to fighting insecurity at times are insecure about being honest. While insecurity is a part of being human, it can limit our clarity, creativity and communication. Dale Carnegie Training conducted research last year, and will follow with further research to be released next month, revealing that the feeling of “confidence” is a central requisite emotion that drives emotional engagement and the ability to grow to meet challenges.
Several years ago, I was terrified of public speaking. I avoided it because just the thought of it made my breath short, my thoughts cloudy and my palms sweat. I watched colleagues motivate others to action while building their personal brand from their platforms and assumed it was a limitation I would accept. To relieve some anxiety, though, I elected to take a course from Dale Carnegie Training. It made an enormous impact on my confidence and has helped me to realize the applications for just about any form of insecurity in relationships and communication – from insecurity with important people to insecurity with interpersonal conflict. Let’s consider four ways that we can build our confidence for intimidating circumstances:
1. Practice communication frameworks. The less we are forced to think about how to frame our messages, the more we can be fluid and creative. I blogged recently about how leaning into structure when we communicate frees us to be more present and effective.
2. Establish the regular discipline of seeking out opportunities. Dale Carnegie wrote, “Do the thing you fear to do and keep on doing it… that is the quickest and surest way ever yet discovered to conquer fear.” The more we do an activity, the more the action moves from our self-monitoring frontal cortex to our intuitive limbic brain, which makes us natural.
3. Cast an inspiring personal vision. Publisher Elbert Hubbard said that, “We become like that on which our hearts are fixed.” If we aspire to elevate our influence and see ourselves doing it, we are likely to make it happen.
4. Relate personal success stories. Telling our personal stories of endurance and victory over challenge and brokenness are a declaration of our capacity and give us strength and peace to meet the insecurities that lie ahead. Find appropriate ways to share stories of success and joy.
How have you overcome insecurity?