The Oxford English dictionary defines confidence as ‘self-assurance arising from a belief in your ability to achieve things.’ From this definition, we can assume that having a better understanding of your level of confidence can be useful when moving towards a future that encapsulates your best hopes. Confidence can provide us with an important source of energy, it keeps us going and can make us more resilient. But at the same time, it can be elusive and difficult to identify.
As confidence is an important factor in moving forwards in your life it is useful to identify where your confidence is right now. Staying faithful to the Solution Focused approach the answers are in the questions that you ask yourself. Here it is useful to make use of the scaling tool, that is you use the tool to gauge more objectively your level of confidence. Scaling is simply a 1-10 scale in which you give yourself a score with 10 being the highest, so in this case, you're most confident and 1 representing the opposite. Useful confidence-based questions to ask yourself are: How confident are you of being able to make progress on your best hopes? How confident are you of maintaining the changes you have made or will make? And finally, how confident are you of maintaining change and of reaching ‘good enough? The concept of ‘good enough’ is helpful because it is often not necessary to reach 10 to see significant progress.
So how do you build confidence? We all recognise those moments in our lives when we were confident, it could have been a sporting event you were competing in, it could have been a job interview or a presentation you had to give. These moments are important because they provide you with important clues as to how you harness confidence in your own unique way. I say unique because we each have different ways of doing things and what might work for me will not necessarily work for you. That is why asking the right questions of yourself can help you develop a blueprint that will help you with your future course of action.
So reflecting back on those moments, (however brief they might have been), you want to get really curious about every and every detail of those moments. What were the tiniest things you noticed about yourself during those moments? Was your interaction with other people different? What did they notice? What did you notice that they noticed? The key is to really get into the details, leave nothing out even if you think it is irrelevant because on closer examination it might be an important piece in your unique strategy puzzle. Once you have forensically examined those instances and have exhausted your description you should then examine what you have put down and highlight key thoughts, actions, and interactions. Examples might be that you noticed yourself smiling more, or that you felt calmer, or that your body felt lighter. Whatever you notice these are the key confidence-boosting strategies that you can call on anytime, because you own them, they are yours.
So there you have it, first, become aware of how your best hope relates to your current level of confidence and what is ‘good enough'
for you. You then examine those instances in which you felt confident (however brief) and begin to map out your unique strategy towards a more confident you.