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Confidence, Courage and Climbing Mountains

Can I let you in on a secret? Confidence is something I struggle with... yes that's right, strange you may be thinking considering I work with women within this area, and yet I do, however my tendency to sometimes struggle with confidence allows me to have great empathy and compassion for those I work with.

Their own struggles with confidence, are not of course my own, they are not me and I am not them but yet I can relate, I can understand and I know to have confidence to do something new, to try something different can be hard and at times exhausting.

So I am going to share a recent example of where I was struggling with my own confidence and how I navigated this. My hope is it may give you some ideas of what you can do too.

Suzanne xx

Confidence and Courage

Before we dive into confidence, I want to talk about courage. As I believe that courage and confidence go hand in hand, to do something new, to step out of your comfort zone takes a huge amount of courage. It can be the dig deep, all consuming, energy sapping form of courage, or it might be the quiet whisperings of calling you to be brave. Of course like everything there are degrees, for some avenues you may need a huge amount of courage for others not so much, it will depend upon the circumstances, the situation and the individual.

But as I said they do go hand in hand and I think the momentum to take that courageous step can be supported through nurturing confidence.

But how do we nurture confidence?

Nurturing Confidence

So last month I had to nurture my confidence, I was privileged enough to be asked to host a workshop at an in person day long event. I was incredibly honoured and excited, I was talking about a subject I am passionate about BUT a part of me was scared and wanted to run and hide, it was in disbelief that I could do this and I had a huge fear of failing.

Now lets pause, re-read that last sentence and notice the words I use...

There are two in particular I wish to draw your attention to, the first is "part" and the second is "failing." A part of me was scared and beneath that feeling was the fear of failure and so this was the starting point of nurturing my confidence.

So what did I do?

I started to explore this feeling and asked that part of me (and note it is only a part) what I was scared of and what failure to me looked like and from that I created a list of all the things I was scared of and all the things I feared failing on with regards to the workshop.

From that list I was able to go through each one in turn and ask the following questions:

-how likely was that to happen? If it was highly unlikely and improbable, I would rationalise it and then put a line through it.

-If it was likely or I could envision it possibly happening I thought of what I could do in preparation to lessen my fears or thought through what I would do so that if it did happen I knew how I would tackle it.

-I practised a visualisation exercise where I walked myself through the day, embodying how I wanted to feel, how I would behave, what I would wear, and how I wanted to feel at the end of the day. I would even visualise if something went off plan and the confident reaction I would have to it.

-And finally on the day I reminded myself that a little nerves was fine, nerves were a indication of how much I care. All of the above helped to nurture my own confidence, it took the fire out of my fears, and whilst a little nerves remained, I certainly went into the workshop with a nurtured confidence.

So in summary:

-If you are feeling unconfident, lean into that feeling, asked yourself what is beneath that? Often it is fear of something or of a number of things?

-For each one, ask yourself how likely it is and put a line through it if it is improbable.

-For those left, ask yourself what could you do to ease your feelings or to help you feel more confident?

-Then visualise what you want to do going well, make it a fully immersive vision, picture every aspect of the moment, how you feel, what you see, what's going on around you.

-Finally a few nerves are normal, its because you care, so remind yourself of that.

Embark On Your Mountain

Sometimes our feelings of confidence can be directly linked to the gap between where we are now and where it is we want to get to. It feels so big, so dauting, so overwhelming and that in itself can play havoc with our confidence.

Take for example when I started out on my Personal Performance Diploma. I remember when the study pack came through the door, the task of qualifying, setting up my coaching practise and working with clients felt so far off, in some ways unobtainable, and if I wasn't careful I could have easily sabotaged myself before I got started.

So what I did was created my own mountain guide, a visual guide to support me as I trained and in turn set up my coaching practise.

The summit for me was working with clients within my own practise, but along the way I had numerous way markers, to help guide my journey to the summit. Like you would if you were walking up a mountain, I kept the summit in mind but my focus was on getting to the next way marker.

Over the next 18 months I steadily climbed my mountain, treading the path and pausing at each way marker to survey the view before getting back on the path to the next one.

My mountain was crudely drawn on a piece of paper, I am not artist and yet this tool was incredibly important, it made the journey manageable, each step nurturing my confidence.

As I said I am no artist but I have created a mountain for you to download and utilise. The summit is your end goal and the way markers along the way help to break the journey down into manageable segments. This could be used in so many ways and feel free to adapt and annotate in a way which works best for you.

Download My Free "Climb That Mountain" Tool Below:

Climb That Mountain
Download PDF • 48KB

If when you look at the tool you feel some coaching around it would help you get the most from it then you are welcome to book a 60 minute coaching session, the investment for you is £52.00. This can be done in person or online. Just reply to this email and we can take it from there.

The Energetic Crash

If you are having to nurture your confidence and harness your courage in doing so, it is really important to plan in a chance to recharge.

When we do something that is a little out of our comfort zone we pull on our energy reserves and quite often post the event we will feel exhausted, and depleted.

Knowing this is quite likely to happen is a huge bonus because you can plan for this.

Something I do with my clients is to ask them on a scale of 0-10 how much energy will it take for them to do what they are undertaking and then depending on what they say, depends on what they need to factor in.

You can do this for yourself:

Ask yourself. "On a scale of 0 -10 how much energy will this take from me? ( 0 being no energy, 10 meaning all my energy)

Answer 0-3 - Plan in little recharge time

Answer 4-6 - Plan in some recharge time.

Answer 7-10 - Plan in a lot of recharge time.

Its a really good way of being aware of how little or how much you will be depleted and then you can plan accordingly.

Seeds of Confidence

Well that is all from me for this month, I hope it will start to sow the seeds of some of the ways you can start to nurture your own confidence and show that with a little bit of courage we can all achieve things we might not think is possible.

And if you do use the Climb That Mountain tool do let me know how you get on and how you used it.

Finally none of us are immune to wobbles, sometimes we all stumble, we doubt ourselves, our abilities and the direction we are heading in but with a little bit of courage, self compassion and kindness we can get back on the path and take those courageous confident steps forwards.

And as always if you would like some compassionate one to one support do drop me an email and we can discuss the options of how we could work together.

Cosy Warm Wishes,

Suzanne xx


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