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Hello lovely and welcome to day 6 of Searching for Serenity's 7 day video tutorial series, the Crash Course to Boosting Your Confidence at Work.
Right, all this week we have been going through your annual appraisal, without the sticky palms, to get you to the point where you feel you are on top of your work, that you really know what you are doing, and to give you all of the external evidence you need to really boost your confidence.
One of the things that stands along this process of updating your cv, listing all of your strengths, focusing really intently on the positive feedback that you receive and ensuring that all your positive feedback is accumulated in one place ready for next annual appraisal- or cv updating-time but also so that you can refer back to them every time something doesn't go quite as well as planned. What we are also looking at is your own negative talk; this is something that underpins everything we have done this week.
Obviously, we haven't been working together 1:1 and if we were to really dive deep into all of this then we would be able to counter your negative self-talk even though you are, I am sure without a doubt, doing an amazing job.
The way that we talk to ourselves really does determine the way that we feel at work. There are some people who will feel confident no matter what, even if they are doing a terrible job and even if all the evidence points to the contrary of their belief.
You, however, will worry, feel guilty about not getting more done, not being at work longer, whatever it might be you will manage to feel guilty about even if you have done a good job. This is because the women who come to me really do struggle with focusing on the positive. They focus on the negative aspects of their job, of the things that people say to them. I gave you three positive and one negative piece of feedback, you would probably focus on the negative to the exclusion of all else!
So what I really do want you to focus on is to keep taking each of these days as we go through them, and focus on the feelings. The way you feel when you read feedback from a client that says you really listened and helped them. Take on board the fact that you do things that nobody else does because you see the world differently from other people, because you are trying to make a difference.
I cannot emphasise strongly enough; the more that you take on board each of the external factors we have considered this week and the more that you connect them with who you are as a person to rewrite that inner self talk of 'shouldn't/can't/ought to' the closer you will be to self-confidence.
What I am doing with you this week is showing you how far you have come, shown you what you have had control over and what you haven't, where there are good reasons to criticise yourself and when there is no reason to criticise yourself. But ultimately you need to be able to internalise the positive aspects of what we are doing
You need to be able to give yourself a break to see just how far you have come, and just how much you have achieved.
So, on with today's topic.
Like any part of any good appraisal we have considered your job and how you fulfill it, whether you hit your key criteria, considering all the things that you have done over the last year to show that you are on point.
Then comes the tricky point; when your boss feeds back to you. Now if you have a good boss, when they feed back to you (if you even have appraisals which I know a lot of us don't) when they feed back to you, nothing that they will say will be a surprise or a shock. Often your ears will be burning and you'll be pink in the face because they are being complimentary and if they are, you know what you are going to do? You are going to write it down in the damn book from yesterday, aren't you?!
This is a judgment call right here. I am going to ask you to approach someone who knows you and knows your work to give you feedback. Ideally I would ask you to approach three people. This is where the judgment call comes in. If you work in a cut-throat office, as I know I have, if you work with people who will throw you under the bus as soon as look at you, letting them know that you are anything less than confident is not going to help. So you can either approach them head-on and say 'I really want to make sure I am doing the right thing, can we have a quick catch up on this project' or 'this project has just come to a conclusion, what do you think? What can I take away and improve, what worked well?'.
If they are not that straightforward or not that easy to talk to you can do this by more surreptitious means.
Assess a project that you have worked on with someone else and examine its parts; what worked well and what didn't. From there you can start to extrapolate what you did and compare with what worked well.
If you are really uncomfortable with this, you can always approach people who know what you do but don't work in your office, aren't direct competition, or even your friends and family. The thing about boosting your confidence at work isn't just work, it's who you are as a person. If you believe that who you are is worth this money, this effort, that you are doing a good job, then you will feel it. It's a self-fulfilling prophecy. But if you feel overwhelmed or that you are not the right person for the job, well, that’s a self-fulfilling prophecy too.
So whether it's somebody at work, preferably up to the three people, whether it's by more surreptitious methods or whether it's going to friends and family members, get feedback on what you have done well, on what you do well, and make sure they feed back to you on how you impact their life. Obviously, if it's your boss you will ask what you do well, how you fulfill your job role and where you go next, rather than your impact on their life, but you get the point.
Get the feedback, and I would love if you would send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with that feedback, so that you can then see, in writing, what these people have to say about you and so that you can start internalising that feedback.
That's all I'm going to ask you to do today is to look at that and to pull everything that we have done this week; whether that means updating your cv a little further, adding to the positive feedback journal and spending time going through it.
By now you should start to realise that there is external evidence in front of you that shows you, you are doing a good job. You have reason to be confident.
If you're still struggling with this then I would encourage you to reach out to me at email@example.com
I can only take you to the water, I cannot make you drink, so if you see all the external evidence in front of you and you still don't feel confident, then that is something we need to look into in greater depth.
However, I will keep it short and sweet for today. Get your feedback, email it to me and I will respond as soon as I see the email, and let me know how you are finding this and whether you are beginning to feel that core inner strength that reminds you, you are kick-ass at what you do.
I will be back in your inbox tomorrow, bye for now.