Ep 15: When Your Confidence Boost Backfires
If you're smart and work hard, but just aren't where or who you want to be, welcome to your podcast, Real Confidence. I'm your host, Alyssa Dver, and I'll be sharing a bit of brain science, so surprising social secrets, and a touch of tough love. Why? Because I believe confidence is everyone's fundamental right and choice. Let's get to it.
There is an irony. And I use that word very specifically because we do things to improve our confidence often. Maybe we go to a conference, or we have listened to a motivational speaker, with the right intention to go and build our confidence to learn something to grow. But we leave there with our tail between our legs, because we go to the conference, and then we realize how much we don't know. Or we hear stories from other people about how much further along they are in their journey and feel badly that we're not as far we listened to the inspirational speakers. And we hear about their trials and tribulations and how much they were challenged and rose above to conquer whatever their issue was. And somehow, some way, we're supposed to follow suit. But in reality, we're not them. And then maybe an hour later or a day or a week later, we go boy, they were awesome. And I suck.
Ah, haven't you and you wonder why or maybe you don't even pay attention. And you again, have all the right intentions of learning more, being motivated figuring out more pieces of the puzzle. So, you read a book or listen to a TED talk or take a class or whatever it might be and come away feeling worse off. Your confidence has been taken, not built. Now, unlike some of the other podcasts I've done, and I've talked about, villains, people and situations, things that take your confidence and there is in most cases some intention or there is just because that other person may be trying to fulfill their own confidence by taking some of yours otherwise known as a bully.
But I'm talking about talking about those kinds of situations here what I'm talking about is we really are going out of our way to do something for ourselves to build more confidence in the end. We kibosh it ourselves we kibosh it accidentally we kibosh because little we do know, or little progress we've made in our own journeys. It's a bummer, right? It's a bummer. But it doesn't have to be. It doesn't have to be. You know. I started speaking about confidence and almost always talking about my own hero journey, my experience with my son Zack and his neurological condition called dystonia. And I used to share it with people as a way of explaining how and why I got into the confidence business, how and why I can speak about brain signs without being an actual neurologist, and so forth. It's a justification, if you will for me. And I really felt lousy about doing that, because I didn't want to sell out my son. But I certainly didn't want people to feel badly for me, feel any pity or any other reason than to show them that I was doing, you know how and why I was doing this. And when I found it out quickly, and it was repeated every single time literally is that somebody would come up to me afterwards really grateful for me sharing the story, because they were suffering from something similar condition wise, or they had a situation they were wrestling with. And he gave them hope that if I was on stage telling the story that they too could get through the fire.
It used to make me feel really good to do that. But it dawned on me that as I would sit in the audience at other times and listen to other people's hero stories and how they got through their own fires, that it wasn't necessarily helping me because my fire was different. My situation was different, was not theirs. So, for every person that was coming up to me saying how helpful it was to hear my story on my stage. I was wondering then, how many other people felt imitated, felt a lack of confidence or that I was taking their confidence that just because I could help my son, just because I could learn about brain science and subsequently bring that knowledge to other people in the form of a confidence course, that maybe just maybe some of those people were feeling worse off because they weren't able to get through whatever challenge they were facing.
So, an interesting dilemma, right. But if nothing else, it made me more conscientious that to share your story to share your experience is not a bad thing provided the motivation to share it is not self-centered. So, I'm not just telling you the story. So that I can feel better about why I'm doing something or to justify something that I want to do, but rather, as a way that I am doing it to benefit you. And that benefit may just be for entertainment. It may be for education; it may be for inspiration. But again, making me more thoughtful, and hopefully you to in the future to say if I'm telling you this story, who's it really benefiting?
Some of what I'd like to share always though, on this podcast, it's not just this kind of food for thought make us kind of think a little bit more about how we communicate and our behaviors and what we do. But also, to protect our own confidence, how can we be a little bit more prepared when we go to a conference or we listen to a motivational speaker, TED talk or otherwise, so that we do get full benefit of the confidence boost that we seek. And not that sadness later. You know, I often compare it to a carb, carbohydrate, you know, feels good when you're eating it, yay, this is gonna be great. And you get that immediate energy boost. But you know, an hour later, you're starving, and it was an empty calorie that now you regret. So, I don't want that to happen to you, especially with my own talks. But with anybody's talks where you go, and you get all juiced up. And then later on, you're like, oh, but I suck. I'm not as good as Alyssa, I'm not good at those other people. Because you know what you are as good, you are as good. But unfortunately, when somebody is on the stage, or you're reading a book about them, or you go to a conference and you go to a class and you hear about somebody else that figured something else out well ahead of you, doesn't mean that you suck in any way just means that they're on stage telling about their own experience, right. So, as usual, I'm going to give you some tactical, doable, easy ways to protect your confidence. But I'm going to do it after we give a little sponsor love. So, I'll be right back hope you'll join me.
This podcast was sponsored by the American Confidence Institute. ACI trains smart, hardworking people how to use basic brain science to more effectively coach themselves and others. ACI is endorsed by top universities, the Strategic HR Management Association and International Coaching Federation. Learn more about ACI keynotes, workshops and classes and coaching certification at www.AmericanConfidenceInstitute.com.
Alright, we're back. And it's time to give some specific tips so that next time you go to a conference, or you listen to some motivational speaker, not only do you feel really good at that moment, you've learned something and everything's good, but that will sustain itself and you won't later feel badly about how little you know or how little you've done. All right, here's some very practical tips.
First of all, celebrate the fact that you're even growing and learning that you're, you're expanding your brain, your library of knowledge, and that you're open to hearing new things. I think that in and of itself is a monumental thing to celebrate. Not everybody's like that. Maybe it's something that you just do naturally your growth minded person that's great and celebrate that recognize that you put effort into doing something that's not routine. That's not habit that's not always comfortable. That you've taken a chance to actually find out that maybe what you're doing could be done better. Or even that what you're doing is wrong. You took a risk. And hopefully you learned something in the process. So first and foremost, yay you.
Second, I want you to also realize a lot of people are often football, you know, just because somebody said they did or they learned or they've accomplished, it was easy, or didn't cost much. Not always, is it not true. But it doesn't mean that it always is going to be that way. Right? So, you know, sometimes I go to an event, and people will say how straightforward something like social media is for them. So intuitive, so easy, it's not a big deal. And then, you know, some days I get on, and I literally want to poke my eyes out, because it's so frustrating. Well, for me, and the way I work and the way my brain is, maybe it is hard. And that other person, not so much, but I'm sure there's things that I do that they'd rather poke their eyes out.
So again, just because somebody else has done something or done it in a certain way, doesn't mean it's going to be easy and obvious for everybody. And that's okay. That's okay. In fact, I dropped the bomb on the social media thing, because social media is one of those places that we seem to look and everything looks easy, right? Everyone looks beautiful. They're having fun, they're happy. And we know that that's not always true. But needless to say, people stretch the truth, not just in social media, they'll stretch it in stories on stage, and they'll stretch it just in conversations in general. So not to think that everybody's bsing you but keep things in perspective. I guess that's what the message is.
Another tactic, and I say tactic, because I think this happens a lot too is we go to say a conference, and we get overwhelmed. There's so much information. And there's so many things that we want to change and do differently, that we leave, and it almost feels like the whole thing is defeating? Well, any good presentation, as you probably know, will teach you at least one thing, one good thing, one nugget, something that you didn't know before, something that will help. And I would suggest that every time you go to a session, you listen to a motivational speaker, for that matter, just pick out one thing, this is a best practice for a lot of masterminds. They go around the room at the end and say to each other, you know, what's the one thing that they're going to take away? So, it's that mindful moment that you say, okay, learn a whole bunch of stuff is all great, lots of lots of tidbits here. But one thing that I really, really want to embrace that I want to plant in my memory that I want to say out loud and write down. So, I don't forget it the next day. What is that one thing? Now we hope you learned more than one thing per speaker per podcast per motivational speaker, whatever it might be. But if you can least embrace one thing, make yourself think about all the things you learned in that session or all that thing, all the things you learned in that conference. Pick out one, really focus is your brain in a way that says hmm, let me rethink everything that I just learned. That's a good thing.
In fact, maybe even do with a buddy. You know, sometimes when I go to a conference, and especially when there's multiple people, what's really nice is to do a debrief and be able to report back to each other what you learned in a session in like a very quick way, maybe two or three bullets that you thought were profoundly interesting. So again, you know, if you're going by yourself, you can write it down in your journal, you may call a friend, whatever. But if you're going with a group, make it a point to do a debrief. Really summarize for each other, do a report out if you will. If you really want to do something brave if you want to do something that is when I say brave, that takes some effort, that definitely takes a little bit more than that mindful moment is retell the talk, retell the message, to somebody else, even if it's your dog. My dog's very smart and hears about all my experiences and conferences and otherwise.
But you know, retelling is a really powerful way of cementing and into your memory, but also sharing the knowledge with somebody else. And in that moment, when you're giving that information to somebody else, not only are you empowering them but you're basically saying I am the vessel, the transference, the messenger from place A to place B so not just leaving going, oh my gosh, there's so much I don't know. And I just learned, and I could do and should do, but actually taking action and saying, look what I learned, I'm going to give that to somebody else. So, my ticket is now worth two times, 2x in value.
Its pretty cool technique may not be that easy to find a subject to listen to ya. Like I said, maybe you didn't get your dog or your child. But you know, what if you can pass on some of the learnings that you had, particularly if they were good. Again, it cements it in your brain, but also gives you a superhero brownie point for bringing that juice, that beautiful knowledge that you just got and giving it to somebody else. To get confidence, you have to give it away, right? So, I'm going to leave you with that today and hope that those were good, profound thoughts because I don't want you to go to your next conference or hear the next motivational speaker or read some great biography, all excited and feel inspired only later to be feel deflated and lose your confidence that you're not as cool or good or smart or as accomplished as all these other people because you are. And I'm not just saying it. It's just that when we go, and we experience somebody else's journey online, in person, wherever. Sometimes we lose perspective, oftentimes we lose perspective. Please don't. The world needs your brilliances, the world needs your energy, the world needs your confidence. Don't let any conference take that away.
So, before we completely wrap up, I want to let you know that full transcripts and show notes for this and other episodes can be found on the website, www.AmericanConfidenceInstitute.com/podcast. I also want to remind you once again, that the best way to get confidence for yourself is to give it to others. And you can do it so easily just by liking and sharing this episode on your favorite social media channels. You can even give me some confidence fueled by sending in any comments about the topics I've covered, or ones you'd like me to consider for the future.
So, for now, this is Alyssa Dver. Thank you for helping to bring more confidence to the world. This podcast was produced by Mindful Media. All rights reserved by Alyssa Dver and the American Confidence Institute. Music written and performed by Jeff Weinstein.