The Value of Confidence

If there has been a surprise for me in my career it has been the confidence deficit of leaders.

 

In mentoring and coaching sessions what often comes to light are deep insecurities and concerns about being up to the challenge of leadership, of measuring up.

 

When the discussion turns to the foundations of confidence-gifts, talents, character qualities, knowledge, skills, and experience-often the leader involved cannot identify these internal resources.

 

But they can tell you about their faults in a New York minute.

 

There is something radically wrong here.  I don't know if it is because of how we are raised, educated or mentored at work, but we must strive to overcome the confidence gap.  Our visions for positive change, the very future depends on bold action, commitment and heartfelt action.  These are not available when we doubt and second-guess ourselves.

 

One thing that professional athletes know-confidence comes from careful development of skills and preparation for engagement on the playing field.  Many of us in organizational life are out on the field but have not continuously developed our skills or prepared properly for the game.

 

Every Visionmaker should be able to give at least ten responses to these questions:

 

  • My gifts and talents are...
  • My character qualities are...
  • My aptitudes are...
  • My character qualities are...
  • My positive contributions are...
  • My challenges overcome are...
  • My successes are...
  • My aspirations are...

 

Many of us are not even able to distinguish between a gift and a character quality.  No wonder we are filled with self-doubt!

 

Visionmakers are careful stewards of self-confidence. They recognize it as a necessary ingredient in the ability to generate purposeful action. Let's make a clear distinction here-confidence is not arrogance.

 

Arrogance is simply lack of confidence in disguise. Visionmakers never succumb to a belief that they are somehow special or superior.  They see the positive attributes that they have been given, and developed, as a sacred trust.

 

As a result, Visionkakers are more concerned with the contribution they are making to others and to their communities than measuring themselves or competing with others.

 

Ultimately, confidence supports the freedom to act in accordance with the heart, in alignment with Destiny. This is the ultimate goal of Visionmaking-to create a meaningful life through deep engagement.

 

Posted on January 22, 2010 and filed under Uncategorized.