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Why Fake Confidence When You Can Have It!

You have probably heard the expression “Fake it ‘til you make it”.  Some people apply this advice to faking confidence until you have it.  My view – why fake confidence when you can have it! Here are 4 reasons why faking it is the least preferred solution:

1. Do You Believe It?

Firstly, understand that faking it with positive self-talk (which you do not believe) is like telling yourself affirmations which you do not believe.  Any time we do not fully believe what we affirm, our unconscious beliefs will always win. For example, if a person says “I am confident and successful” and if they have unconscious beliefs such as “I am not good enough”, “I don’t deserve success”, etc, those limiting beliefs will sabotage their confidence and success.

Often people with limiting beliefs may feel the need to use affirmations to compensate for those limiting beliefs. People who have solid and congruent empowering beliefs, feel little need for affirmations because their beliefs are so strong they unconsciously act upon them.  When we truly believe, affirmations become obsolete, and faking it becomes irrelevant.

2. More Confusion, Less Confidence

From speaking with many people each week, and thousands since 2000, people are already confused enough about their choices and direction in career/relationships/life.  Faking it and pretending to be something that you are not just adds to the confusion, and decreases confidence.  Often people who pretend to be something that they are not create internal confusion and conflicts as they give themselves mixed messages eg. one day they are confident, the next day they are not.

What is your unconscious mind supposed to do?  Which internal dialogue does it listen to?  Well both, hence the confusion.  Your unconscious mind is unable to analyse (that is the role of your conscious, analytical mind) so it takes on board everything you say to yourself – the good, the bad and the indifferent.  When you develop solid belief in yourself, the confusion disappears and your confidence grows.

3. Confidence or Competence

Many people confuse confidence with competence.  Confidence is a positive emotion that reflects your level of self-belief and self-worth.  The greater your belief in yourself and your worth, the greater your level of confidence in yourself and your abilities.  Meanwhile, competence relates to your level of skill and ability.

Both confidence and competence are important keys to success.  You probably know of people who have lots of confidence yet fail to deliver results, and talk themselves up without delivering on their promises.  You may also know of people who have lots of skills, yet their lack of confidence prevents them from promoting themselves effectively and has them question their contribution.  While you may be able to fake confidence or competence temporarily, sooner or later you and other people will notice the lack of consistency in your behaviour and in your results.

4. Great Potential & Resources

Human beings have unrealised potential within them.  Generally, we tend to underestimate our potential until we push ourselves beyond our comfort zone, and realise how much more we are capable of achieving.  You are capable of so much more; you just need to learn to access the infinite resources within you more effectively. Faking it assumes that you are unable to draw on these resources – you just need to pretend and wait until you develop them over time.

If you have ever felt confidence at any time in your past, you can access it and feel it again!  You already have a reference and an experience of it, so you can feel it again.  If you have never felt confidence before, you can access it too.  I believe that the only thing that differentiates a highly confident and successful person from one that is less confident and successful is how each of them accesses their internal resources.  Once you tap into those resources more effectively, faking it becomes obsolete!

Use Your Energy Wisely

If you are going to use your energy to achieve something, you may as well use it wisely!  It takes a lot of energy to pretend to be or feel something, and often more energy than to actually have it or do it.  The energy you put into faking it (and then only achieving temporary or inconsistent confidence and success), you can put into making it so that your confidence lasts.  Instead of telling people to fake it, I prefer to help them to make it!

If you would like to have consistent confidence and personal and professional success:

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