More on Self Belief


Some more ideas for helping people to develop self belief and confidence.

Encourage your client to spend more time with positive people

Ask them to consider carefully who they choose to spend time with – and ask them whether they are supportive, helpful and positive or whether they are hindering. What sorts of things do they talk about? What sorts of things do they do? Is it time to think about spending more time with more positive people?

Teach the concept of ‘giving sanction’

Giving sanction means choosing carefully which messages you are going to value and act upon and which messages you are going to ignore.   Psychologists have shown that we are good at taking notice of information that fits with our world view.  If we believe that we are not very good at something we will filter out messages that suggest we are doing OK or getting better.  Conversely if we believe we are good at something we will filter out messages that suggest we are not doing so well.

Develop affirmations that are credible

An affirmation is a carefully formatted statement that asserts that something is true.  ‘I am getting better at making my pitch’ is an example of an affirmation.  So is ‘I am making real progress on developing my business’.

Now I am not saying that it is all about managing our own internal conversations and beliefs.  Clearly this is only one part of the challenge.  But it is important.  Please don’t underestimate how hard it can be to help clients to develop more positive and optimistic thinking patterns.  Often the old negative patterns will have been grooved for years.  Before you can make any real difference you will have to establish a pretty strong relationship with the client.

However I don’t many many pessimistic people who have made the transition to self employment or entrepreneurship (although I do know a few who have become pessimistic as a result!).  So grooving positive thinking seems to be an important skill for the enterprise coach.

“I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.” – Mahatma Gandhi

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  1. Caroline
    March 27, 2009 at 10:43 pm

    I agree that if you spend more time with positive people you become more positive yourself. It is difficult for pessimistic/negative people to change their thinking patterns and become more optimistic/positive. I read an article by Med Yones, a happiness coach, which covers the topic of pessimistic and optimistic thinking patterns. It gives advice for how to change your patterns in order to become a happier person. See the article at http://www.lifehappiness.org/psychologyofhappiness/index.htm

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