Imagine That - I Feel Confident
By Guest Author - Jackie Ghedine
I have a challenge for you. If you lack confidence, you will instantaneously question where this is going and if you should participate. I promise this isn’t that kind of challenge. This is a challenge to possibly take you out of your comfort zone but it will ultimately give back to you - just trust in yourself and the power of your mind.
I Feel Confident
I invite you on a little journey with me. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Think back to a time when you were at the top of your game. Maybe it was when you nailed the presentation to your company’s CFO and received accolades from the Board. Maybe it was when you ran a half marathon, after training for months. What about the huge crisis you navigated at work with complete composure and expertise. Recreate this moment. What are people saying? What background noises do you hear? Where are you when the adrenaline kicks in and you get that overwhelming sense of accomplishment? How does that make you feel?
Studies have proven that the brain cannot distinguish between imagining a situation and actually being in a situation. The brain’s activity when it visualizes an action and when it engages in an action are the same. Consider what happens when you think about something truly frightening. You begin to feel anxious, your stomach knots and your heart rate increase slightly. There is no real threat happening, but your body is reacting as if the threat were real.
Psychologist Alan Richardson performed an experiment several years ago, proving the power of visualization. Alan had one group of basketball players practice foul shots for 20 minutes a day, five days a week for four weeks. A separate group of basketball players was guided by a professional to visualize shooting and making foul shots for 20 minutes a day, five days a week for four weeks. The group that physically practiced the fouls shots improved by 24% while the group that visualized practicing and making foul shots improved by 23%. This is a wonderful ‘flaw’ in our brain.
This can be applied to bolstering your confidence. You can increase your confidence by meditating with visualization. Each morning set aside 10-minutes to meditate. Create a picture of one of those successful times from your past and relive it. This long-term practice will bring those empowering moments to the forefront of your subconscious mind.
I am a realist though. While most people understand how meditating daily is an important part of making shifts in thinking, I am well aware of how few people have a habit of actually meditating. I’m going to provide you with a quick confidence fix you can activate the next time you need it in four easy steps.
1. Give yourself time:: 45 minutes prior to any confidence-needing event, find a space where you can decompress. When we run from task to task our pre-frontal cortex (part of the brain used for heavy thinking) is overworked and gets fatigued. Much like a battery, it needs to be recharged to be at full power.
2. Relax and Release:: Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. To remove any stress associated with anticipating the event, clench your fists, hold for 10 seconds and release. Do this 5 times. It relieves the built-up physical tension you carry with you.
3. Give yourself a pep talk:: Talk to yourself as if you were giving advice to a friend. Don’t forget to point out your strengths and successes but do so by referring to yourself in the third person instead of ‘I’. This technique eliminates emotional attachment to ourselves and keeps self-doubt at arm's length.
4. Visualize:: Go through the above visualization process. Bring yourself back to a time when you succeeded and immerse yourself in that moment as if you were there all over again. What are you hearing around you? What emotions are bubbling up? Are there physical sensations within you?
The practice of visualization is a powerful tool for increasing confidence. By bringing forth examples of our confident self, we begin to set our subconscious default to a positive position versus one that reinforces our self-sabotaging beliefs.
Becoming confident is possible, it takes practice, patience, and repetition.
Guest Blogger BIO ::
Jackie Ghedine is a certified coach who works with women in transition. Her clients are DONE letting their inner skepticism dictate their day and are now determined to decide their future. Jackie’s proprietary process moves clients from living in black and white to living in color.
Jackie is considered the Jack Russell of humans, she’s high-energy, a loyal companion and grabs hold of everything with fierce determination. She is a former publishing executive who was responsible for creating and building new businesses, setting strategy, delivering revenue and managing a diverse team. With so many varying responsibilities, she was challenged with how to dedicate enough time to the most valuable resource she had, the people. This revelation was a driving factor in becoming a coach. Jackie is the owner of www.rewriteyourscript.com and co-founder of The Resting Mind.