Simply Perform

5 Mistakes People Make About Confidence

August 22, 2018

For some, confidence is something that appears to come easy to them.  For others, it’s the prized possession that they lack and if only they could get it then….

But in my applied work, I hear many errors that people make about confidence.  These errors then stand in their way of not only becoming “more confident” but in moving towards their goals and upping their game.  

Below are the Top 5 that I come across…

Do you do any of these?

Confidence Errors 1 of 5:

Many assume that confidence is THE magic solution. That if they could be more confident, THEN everything will be OK. Yet this is flawed. Confidence is the result of having done something well, previously. If the challenge is new to you, confidence may be hard to come by. Instead, the capacity to move forwards *despite* doubt and anxiety is crucial. The development of this capacity is rocket fuel 🚀

When have you moved forward despite doubts and anxiety? What did you do or think that helped?

💪 🧠 🚀


Confidence Errors 2 of 5:

💪 🧠 🚀

Where do you actually draw you confidence from?

Beating others? Winning? Looking good? What others say about you?

Perhaps all useful sources when used in the right way but provide shaky foundations upon which to build confidence. They’re largely out of your control.


✔️ Your own previous performance

✔️ Your excellent preparation for the big event

✔️ Clarity in what you want to do during the big event

✔️ Objectively reviewing your performance: Good? Better? How?

Confidence Errors 3 of 5:

“They’re a confident person, I’m not” …

Whilst we may be confusing extraversion with confidence when we say this, confidence is variable 📈📉📈 and often based on the situation.

The outgoing person at the party may crumble under the pressure of a big presentation and stutter their way to the end. Why? Because confidence is context specific. The more we’ve done something successfully, the more confident we’ll be when we face that same challenge in the future.

🧠 💪 🚀

What are you confident in? How did that happen? What might it mean for those situations where you could benefit from a boost in confidence?

Confidence Errors 4 of 5:

“Be confident. Just think positive”

It’s well-meaning advice but “just thinking positive” is often difficult to do during tough times – not to mention vague!

As detailed in previous posts, confidence is largely based on positive past experiences of similar situations.

So, we can enhance our confidence by:

✔️ Recalling times when we’ve performed well in similar circumstances

✔️ Breaking down our challenge into small steps and committing to the next step

✔️ Deliberately developing challenge into our preparation to prepare for the actual performance

💪 🧠 🚀

Confidence Error 5 of 5:

“I want a technique that will make me confident”

Sadly, there are no shortcuts here. No magic technique that turns the “confidence switch” on in your brain the same way you turn your phone on. Such “tricks” are the stuff of science fiction, distracting us from our current situation and aspirations.

Confidence is hardwon and the result of a facing up to challenging times, drawing out the lessons learned, monitoring progress and going again. Again. And again.


This post is a collection of Instagram posts from my Instagram account:

Ready to up your game in sport, work or life?  Get in touch for a free initial call to discuss how we can work together to help you achieve your goals.

Also, check out our Spotlight profiling service.  Spotlight is designed with performance in mind and can help you understand where you draw your confidence from as well as how to build more robust confidence.

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