Self-Confidence Will Make You Unstoppable
I was speaking at a Financial Services conference in Australia and heard an insurance company CEO issue a provocative challenge to the audience members.
“If you stand on any street corner in Sydney and ask everyone who walks by to buy life insurance, every eighty-fifth person will. The questions is, do you have what it takes to hear the word ‘no’ eighty-four times in a row?”
Listen to the audio episode or read the transcript below.
The failure rate in the Financial Services industry is north of eighty percent.
This industry hires a small fraction of the people who apply. We provide good training, good products and good internal and external support. Yet most fail. And they are good people who got hired for good reasons.
Lack of self-confidence doesn’t mean lack of ability.
I’m sure that everyone who didn’t make it in our business has a good reason why. But I bet in most cases, the root cause of the failure is that they didn’t see enough people. They didn’t want to hear the word ‘no’ eighty four times in a row.
There was a lack of self-confidence. I get it. It takes a lot of confidence in one’s ability to ask people to trust you enough to turn over their money.
What is self-confidence, why do so many people lack it and how do we acquire it if we don’t have it?
Self-confidence is self-assurance in your own ability. Rajendra Persaud says self-confidence is born of an attitude where you:
“Promise yourself, no matter how difficult the problem life throws at you, that you will try as hard as you can to help yourself. You acknowledge that sometimes your efforts to help yourself may not result in success, as often being properly rewarded is not in your control.”
By asking we may hear yes or we may hear no. We can’t control the answer, but we can ask. We can also improve our chances by being well prepared.
I think people who lack self-confidence depend too much on other people to make them feel good about themselves.
They fear failure so they don’t make the leap. They simply don’t feel they deserve success.
I don’t think any of us will ever completely overcome a lack of self-confidence. Everyone experiences it to some degree.
When you feel yourself lacking in self-confidence, take the necessary steps to overcome that feeling. If you get shot down, congratulate yourself for trying rather than criticize yourself for not succeeding. Curtail any negative self-talk. Replace the negative thoughts with positive thoughts. It can be done.
Doing something that makes you feel good about yourself is a great idea.
Perhaps you want to focus on your personal appearance. Certainly focus on your health. Improve your wardrobe. Start working out. Have you noticed how much self-confidence runners have?
Most people, including your clients, want you to succeed.
Ours is not a hostile business. Don’t be self-conscious about asserting yourself. You’re a trained professional. Nip low self-esteem in the bud. It’s a downward spiral. As trite as it may sound, just decide to become successful. Start moving in the right direction.
Self-confidence will make you unstoppable, but it has to come from within.
Don’t wait for others to validate you. Taking charge of your own destiny begins with feeling good about yourself. As Rumi said nearly eight hundred years ago,
“Don’t be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth.”