The Confidence Gap
“The confidence gap”, theory says men and women have different feelings of self confidence and attitudes to their abilities. Women tend to play down who we are as women which by default rewards men. Overlooking women who are also qualified for the same positions or more qualified is not uncommon. Why do we do this and what do we need to do to change it?
The Power of Language
Women often underestimate the power of words and speaking the truth about who they are. What we say has a huge impact on how we are perceived and how others see us, this can impact on the opportunities that are given to us and what doors are opened up to us. Our words really do shape our reality and yet often we don’t realise what words we are using and how they are affecting us.
Although “we are women, hear us roar” is what we want you to see, our reality is more like second guessing ourselves and playing down our achievements, apologising for interrupting and sharing our opinions especially if they are contradictory and different to the status quo. We hold back on speaking the truth, especially if it will offend someone, even when things really need to be said and it would be detrimental not to do so.
We hold back on speaking the truth
We use overly humble and apologetic language to extinguish conflict and fall outs before they even happen like; “It’s just my opinion but …..” or “Correct me if I’m wrong …” or “I know I’m not an expert but …..”. This language dismisses our confidence and reduces the power behind the words affecting our credibility and making us look wishy-washy rather than a powerful thought leader, just so we don’t appear rude. As women we often hide from the truth of us, we don’t want to be seen or judged by others. If others can’t see us then they can’t have an opinion on us, when in reality most other women are too busy taking stock of themselves to judge others. We are our own worst enemies, we dim our own lights and dilute our own potential by our own words. We play down our achievements, sell ourselves short and attribute our success to luck when asked to describe ourselves, in favour of being humble and non-competitive in order to appear the traditional ideal of being feminine.
We discourage other women to speak openly
We discourage other women to speak openly and our actions teach our girls to do the same as us. By changing ourselves we become an example for other women and set off a ripple effect encouraging other women to allow themselves to be more powerful which teaches our children to speak up and out too.
Self-confidence is important if you want to win at life, so it’s time for women to change, to be powerfully confident in everything they do so they can “be” their potential and speak more effectively. We all need some of these skills to become habits in our lives if we are to make a huge difference in our own lives. It can take a bit of practice to get the hang of it! The pay off is sensational.
- A confident women radiates happiness and success from within because she believes in herself
- She changes her core beliefs because she knows she is deserved and believes she can meet her new desired way of being, she fakes it till she makes it because she believes she has already made it. Her attitude is that of a winner from the beginning.
- A confident women has self-observation and awareness of her own words and behaviour, she drops any negative thoughts, especially towards herself and changes the words she uses to positive, specific and definite words that builds herself and others up making people feel inspired rather than pulling them down. These words are engrained in her psyche. Her sentences start with
- I can ….
- I will ….
- I am …..
- I believe ….
- I know I …..
- She surrounds herself with positive people, role models and mentors, she has wonderful girlfriends with great hearts and attitudes that build each other up and fantastic friendships that are supportive
- Confidence allows you to question what others do so you can make your own choices, allowing you to change and do things differently
- A confident women understands self-care and is not afraid to say no, she doesn’t have to say yes to appease others or look good, she puts herself first, looks after herself, and schedules regular self-care activities so when she says yes she means it and has no regret.
- She has strong goals with an action plan to achieve them, she works hard and creates her own success
- A confident women knows who she is, she knows her personality and all of her strengths which she uses to the full extent and to her advantage, she also understands her weaknesses so she can work around these by delegating or changing things.
- She understands she sometimes needs help and is ok speaking out and asking for help when she needs it.
- A confident women steps outside her comfort zone because this is where growth and success happen because it stretches her beyond what is comfortable to do
We will never be all these things all the time, but if we can do as many of them as often as we can, we will achieve much more than we could ever imagine or ever expected. It will be uncomfortable and horrible at times but once we are over those feelings, what we achieve will astound everyone even ourselves. Now is the time to tackle “The Confidence Gap” in your world. Tune into the language that you use and keeps tabs on your Self Confidence Skills. Remember you are a wonderful and beautiful woman who is amazing, it’s up to you to show it.