Recognization is the first step going to confidence

My hands are shaking. My palms are wet. I am standing on a stage to start my first public speech in a club.

My brain is blank. What I have prepared last night is no where to be found…

I am frozen.

Time passes by. It feels like hours long.

No one laughs at me. No one makes fun at me. They look at me with smiles, expectations and encouragement,

One begins to applaud. Another one joins in. Then another, another one…

Everyone is applauding now.

I feel warm, safe, loosed up, my body circulation backs on. I an mot frozen any more.

I begin to speak.

I don’t know what I have said any more. But the whole experience has stacked with me forever.

I recognize that with a safe environment I can regain my confidence. If this happens to me once, it can happen to me again. My experience can be repeated.

We learn knowledge from schools with hope that we can recognize the situations where we can use it (repeat the knowledge) someday.

The purpose of the education is to prepare us to gain cognitive experience other people have for our future benefits. So that we can recognize them for our gains in life and career. Therefore, we may be able to repeat the success others have.

This principle applies to you is to gain your recognition when you have a life experience where you are scared, feel defeated, feel on the peak your life and career, and remember those moments.

When you are not confident facing a situation, reflect one of your past experience that you think you can “repeat” in a way giving enough energy to move forward.

Confidence is an experience.

You can be confident anytime if you can recognize your situation and choose to move on anyway.

Confidence is a choice.

Confidence is a working progress.

Confidence is a practice.

You can be confidence if you have done it once in your life.

Suggestion for you:

1. prepare your precognition by reflection your life experience and knowledge.

2. When you feel not confident, take a deep breath and moment to find your precognition, repeat what you have prepared.

3. Take an action forward

What are the real skills that serve you life time?

We interview two most promising candidates for one important position for the company.

The two candidates have stellar resume, great interviews (three rounds after initial screening interview). They both are in their early forty, full of energy and ambition.

The executive interview committee members come together to vote for The One after the last round of interview. Strangely, contrary to previous Interview results, this vote is tilted to candidate B.

The reason?

Most committed members feel certain uncertainty about candidate A, but hard to put a finger on the exact reason.

I would call this as instinct, a haunch, or a doubt, or may lack of some trust.

As matter of fact, we all have similar experience under different circumstances. We know some people have excellent education, but hard to connect, difficult to work with. These people, we say, lack of “soft skills”.

Soft skills we refer here include personality traits, such as

  • resilience,
  • generosity,
  • honesty,
  • open minded,
  • empathy,
  • sympathy,
  • grit,
  • kindness,
  • communication skills,
  • Emotional maturity…
  • etc.

As a matter of fact, these so called soft skills are The Real Skills we all need to have a sustainable career, to have fulfilled and happy life.

Employees without these real skills, a company will not operate healthily for long. And employees will not be very happy working there.

These real skills are difficulty to measure, to quantify. Therefore, it’s difficulty for companies to use them as hiring criteria.

Knowing there are so many self helping books regarding the development of these skills, more and more coaches come to help people discover their real skills, I feel the time for mastering the real skills is coming.

To develop these real skills is hard. It is scary. It needs a lot of work.

We will get to face:

  • our fear of imposter
  • Fear of imperfect
  • Fear of not good enough
  • Fear of rejection
  • Fear of failure…

Only when we take charge of fear, we can take a moment to see things from other’s shoes. We can bounce back to our life to do things we get to do. We can grow our muscles stronger. Then we can develop our real skills further.

Educations are necessary for us to learn.

The real skills can get us to a more productive, happier and long lasting route.

The more courageous you are, the longer you can go

I have some successful friends. Quite a number of them have changed their career a few times, say five to seven times.

When I asked them what have made them to switch from one industry to another industry, or one field to another field, their answers including: freedom, intuition, following my heart…

None of them has mentioned that courage is the one that leads them to their success.

However, for every step of their way, for each career change during their journey, the courage is all over place.

  • They are brave to take a less travelled road – most of them have studied or worked overseas, not even thinking of the language and cultural challenges during this journey.
  • They are brave to change to a new field to learn from others, to try new things and take initiatives, not even thinking of the challenges of integration with new team, new boss, new culture and new politics.
  • They are brave to change their identities for any new jobs they do. They don’t want the past to define who they are. They build their new characters, they keep growing , discover their potentials and express them physically and vocally.

I am grateful to know and have this kind of friends in my life. They enrich my life. They make my life feel meaningful

All successful people have one common trait – they are courageous.

The more courageous you are, the more experience you can gain, the closer you become to your goals, the longer you can go on the road of your career.

Your success and your long career can be measured by the degree of your courage.

So I will challenge you:

  • if you want to one courageous thing today, what could it be?
  • If you will go off your comfort zone, what will you do?

~~ ~~

Another area of courage is about decision making.

When you decide to do something, what makes you to do so? Did you hear you are telling yourself to do so because you want to it, or you should do it, or something else?

When your vulnerabilities are exposed to the public, how do you take your next step? Will you make your steps based on your will, your should, or your could?

Successful people do things by telling or feeling themselves to get to do, will do. When “should” comes up, they will sit down and analyze where the should comes from.

~~ ~~

In Summary:

Courage is a choice.

Successful people choose to be courageous.

Courageous means you get to meet all challenges and joy all the way. Courageous means that you make your own decisions and own them

The more courageous you are, the longer you can go on your career.

A New Day

One of my best friends, Linda, comes to visit me.

I am very happy to see her, because she has something that is attractive to me, makes me excited and looking forward to seeing her.

Linda is a lifelong learner, with curiosity, sympathy and determination. She is a strong person, yet you will tell at first meeting with her. Because she speaks softly, with gentle smile and clear voice.

Linda is an Entrepreneur. She does consulting, executive coaching and training. She is also a public speaker.

To many women, Linda is a role model.

Linda has rich working experience. As an executive, she worked for multinational companies in various countries. She has in depth understanding corporate operation and culture.

With Linda’s visit, a New Day starts.

She brings a lot inspiration and encouragement to me.

A New Day is coming.

A toast to 2019

1. Successfully survived with many learning, experience and more connections.

2. Successful relocation.

3. More clear with who I am.

4. I appreciate all the people I have met in 2019. They are all my good teachers.

5. A year of growth in a hurry.

6. A year of confusion world wide politically, led by the UNited States. No more politics in 2020.

7. A year of yoga.

8. A of self care.

9. A year of reading.

10. A year of awaking.

1% better towards to your confidence

English is my second language.

I think my English is good. Yet I am not confident from time to time, especially when some native speakers do not understand what I say.

Today I was chatting with a few friends. When I mentioned there is trivia night in town, they could not understand what I said till I explained and said it the second time.

The problem was my pronunciation with the word trivia. I pronounced “i” in trivia like “ai” in like. That is confusing for them.

However, I don’t feel awkward to chat with them again no matter I make mistakes or not, because they are my friends I feel safe. And this helps me to improve my oral English

My confidence of speaking English shows through 1% better or a tiny bit progress. And this rule applies to my many areas of life.

My goal is to make a little bit progress – 1% better today than yesterday. I believe this tiny little step will compound over time. I will reach my milestones over time.

Successful people are not becoming success over night. Their success come though many hours of dedicated work and creativity.

10,000 hours of work can lead people to become an expert in one area. And every little tiny step adds up to 10,000 hours will turn you, me into a new person with more skills, experienced person.

We will discover our confidence, express the internal confidence through small steps.

1% better is the way to go.

The choices make us who we are

Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you will get.

Someone said this to me long time ago. My interpretation was that our life is colorful, welcome whatever comes to your way.

But, today when this same saying comes to me again, I have new interpretation: we do have choices to choose which chocolates we want to eat.

We do have choices.

We can make our own choices in life.

Scenario one: We face challenges, losses, setbacks. We can choose to face them or to hide them

When we don’t allow ourselves to grieve our losses, wounds, and disappointments, we are doomed to keep reliving them. We do not set us free.

Freedom lies in learning to embrace what happened. Freedom means we muster the courage to dismantle “the prison”, brick by brick. To strengthen our muscles by facing our wounds and vulnerabilities.

Courage is a choice.

Scenarios two: In our daily life, we are hungry for approval, attention, affection. We are hungry for the freedom to embrace life and to really know and be ourselves.

Live a life with presence and appreciation is a choice.

There are many choices in life. We are driving the car of life. Life is beautiful, colorful and tasty. The choices we made become who we are.

Confidence is a choice

One of my friends Ying, who is a coach now, has made seven transitions in her career. She was a consultant, a finical analyst, a startup entrepreneur, a business partner, a freelancer, a general manager. In 2018, she chose to become an executive coach.

When people asked her, were you scared to switch from one industry to another industry? Why you are so confident to move from one career to another?

Ying said, “I look back. What I see is someone pursuing her passion, following her heart, finding meanings in her life. She makes choices that give her energy, give her meaning and get her out of the bed everyday.”

Does this mean Ying’s life has been smooth? It is nothing like that.

Ying has many sleepless nights. And those nights also gave her many rewards to learn, to experience and to grow.

All those years of life experience has made who she is today.

Ying had times when she was intimidated by unknown, by the exposure of her vulnerabilities.

How did she handle these down times?

Ying told me during those periods that she bites her teeth tightly and asked herself to make one small step or one thing each day to make herself feel good about herself. She limited her thinking to make a small progress each day and focused on small wins each day. Surprisingly after a few days she saw improvement.

These began her cycles of upward spiral structural psychology. Whenever she has the churning stomach feeling, she asks herself quietly to go back to the spiral structure. And this has been her secret weapon and source of her confidence.

Confidence is an option we can choose to have.

Confidence is to face our vulnerability, admit, learn from others and move forward.

We are born with confidence. Confidence is us. Confidence is our potential. We have unlimited confidence in us. It’s matter of choice for us to be confident.

I have many ideas and assumptions

Yesterday there are two bright and smart new graduates came to my house for dinner.

I asked them what are their plan after graduation. One has solid plan and plan B for her next step. The other one, claimed with charismatic personality, has a lot to talk.

He talked about his views on the world economic development, what technology can do for the world and it might go. It seems glamorous and grandiose.

Then I asked him, “How these development are related to you, to your situation?”

He seems stumbled with the question.

He is not alone. Many of us including me have many ideas and assumptions. These ideas and assumptions create little value till we form assertions and test them in life.

When we are confident to do things, we know we can test our confidence in action. We do things through trials and errors to get where we want.

Having ideas and assumptions are actually a good start. It may be your step one.

Step two is to form an assertion with them.

Step three is to bring the assertion to test in action.

For example, my assertion is: with the fast pace of technology development, our life becomes busier and may be stressful. People may be stressed out and lost their sense of direction, or even self. Therefore, business coaches or life coaches will become highly demanding in the next decade.

How do I test this assertion?

I will join various networking groups to check the feedback and their needs. Next step is to fine tuning to understand which areas are really people need help for.

With the above knowledge, I can form some tests and go back to the groups for further feedback.

I even can test my assertion online and through social network.

With the review I can get from my tests, I might be able to move some where and get some work done.

In the middle of the road

When you are in the middle of your long march, or long run, what is going on in your mind?

When you are in the middle of your challenge and tough project, how do you feel?

When you start your New Year’s plans many times, what is happening with you in the middle of the year?

We all feel the struggles, the tough challenges we face in the middle of our destinations. The middle road is the period that tests our endurance and grit.

I remember my grandma told me that donkeys are bland-folded when they are milling rice or wheat to prevent them distracted and to increase their focus working.

Sometimes, we need “blindfold” ourselves not to be distracted by social network etc. This is especially important when we are in the middle of the road.

We need focus.

We need endurance.

We need hanging on there a little bit more, a little bit more…

Do you remember that when you workout hard in the gym, your muscles are aching, you are sweating, you body is shaking…

Then you come back to the gym again, again, day after day.

Days turn into months, then years.

You get a good body, a good health and good spirit.

If you have stopped after three days, you will not make a big change to your body, mind and your spirit for long run.

Your reputation creates your habits. Your habits create You over time.

When you have a goal in mind. It calls your determination. It calls your tough mindset. The most important thing is that it calls you to create your New habits.

To create your New habits, you need have a new imagine in mind. And then work towards to the imagine until you become it.

You are I the middle of the road, look the imagine you have had in mind, walk towards it without distraction, one step at a time, one day a time, 1% better a time, you will get through it.