How many times have you stopped yourself saying something in a meeting because you were worried about sounding stupid? Despite the fact you’ve just listened to someone else confidently spout a load of meaningless cliches for 20 minutes. Or do you hesitate to ask for flexitime because you’re worried your boss will judge you? We spoke to Patrycja Skurzak, confidence specialist and life coach at Seven Career Coaching, about the confidence gaps she believes are holding women back in their careers.
1. LISTENING TO THE SELF-CRITICAL VOICES
“If you don’t believe in yourself, no one else will and you’ll miss out on opportunities at work,” says Patrycia. “We all have those self-critical voices, but, in my experience, women manage them less effectively than men. The more active and lively your critical voices are, the more they’ll affect your performance at work.”
She advises: “Pay attention to what you do well and recognise all your achievements, big and small. Also, give yourself opportunities to be challenged – self-belief grows from going outside your comfort zone and proving you can do it. Finally, focus on your efforts instead of the results. That way, you’re celebrating what’s within your control.”
2. WORRYING ABOUT BEING JUDGED
“This is one of the most common human fears and it’s linked to our natural desire to be liked by all at all times,” explains Patrycia. “This fear prevents us from speaking up, asking for help and sharing our opinions. In the end, it stops us being honest and authentic and keeps us from openly experiencing and expressing our true selves.”
Read the full article on Good Housekeeping here.
To find out more about how we can help you build your confidence, visit our Life Coaching page.