Thursday, February 15, 2007

Dealing with Doubt

U.S. business consultant Tony Alessandra wrote an article recently on self-confidence, and how his father bred it in young Tony at an early age by sending him out to fight a schoolyard bully. “Confidence in yourself gets built up gradually, one success at a time,” he writes.

I certainly agree that self-confidence is essential in business (if you don't have it, you’ll have to fake it). It’s confidence that makes you go out and sell to people who have never heard of you, and to make that 10th call of the day when the first nine were all rejections.

Self-confidence is all about knowing that you can deal with just about anything the world can throw at you. And about making other people believe that about you, too.

Here's Tony’s recipe for developing confidence:

Take an inventory of the major accomplishments you've achieved over the past few years. Then remind yourself of the minor ones too. What about the computer course you completed? Have you built anything that's still standing?“

Don't be modest. Tell the truth about how hard you worked, what sacrifices you've made. If you can't think of any, then begin by congratulating yourself for living as long as you have. Sheer survival is an accomplishment these days! What's unique about you? What skills do you bring to an organization or project that you can count on?”

In my experience, the next step is to write these stories down. Make a habit of referring to them often. Be ready to use these success stories whenever people doubt your ability to accomplish what you say you can.

The very act of dealing with doubt can give you the self-confidence you need.

Learn more about Tony at

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