5 Proven Ways to Boost Your Self-Confidence as an Entrepreneur

Doctors tell us you are what you eat. Put healthy foods in and you get strong bodies. The same is true when it comes to your mental health. You are what you feel. Think positive thoughts and you’re primed for peak performance.

That’s why it’s important to chow down on positive self-confidence boosters, especially when it comes to the ups and downs of owning your own business. Keep these boosters in your emotional cupboard when you need a self-confidence snack.

Get used to saying “when,” not “if.”

Words matter when it comes to self-confidence. So pay attention to how you phrase things. “If I get that new contract,” leaves open the possibility you may not get it. It’s negative energy that makes you doubt your ability. But by changing it to, “When I get the contract,” you’re programming your brain for success.

Olympic swimmers borrow this idea by talking themselves through a winning swim meet. It starts with launching off the starting block, pulling strokes down their lane, executing a perfect underwater turn, then touching the wall at the finish. Hearing the words programs their brain for a positive outcome.

Surprise and delight a customer.

Look for opportunities to surprise a customer with above-and-beyond service. It will help you accomplish two things. First, stellar service is what creates lifelong customers. Repeat business helps stretch your customer acquisitions costs. Plus, satisfied customers tell others. That word-of-mouth promotion helps grow your business.

Second, it gives you a strong sense of accomplishment. You made a difference in someone’s life. That’s a real boost to how you feel about your business skills—and your worth as a human being.

Network to validate your aha moments.

Set aside an hour a week to network with other business owners. It might be at a Chamber of Commerce event, online in a LinkedIn group or listening to a business podcast. The biggest takeaway from these events is the realization that you’re not alone. Others have experienced the same challenges as you.

Even more turbocharging is the aha moment that validates something you did on your own. You figured out how to attack a problem, devised your own solution and now you’re sharing it with others. And they love it! Some even want to try it for their business. It’s those successes that compound to create even more moments in the future.

Embrace routines to create reassuring predictability.

It’s rare when one day is just like the other when it comes to running your business. That variety is one of the reasons you started your business. But too much unpredictability and you feel like you’ve lost control. And that can shake your confidence.

Routines can help you take back some control and restore your self-assurance. For example, some people review their calendar each evening to see what’s on tap for tomorrow. The routine helps you set expectations, identify priorities and gather any information you might need. You may still get some surprises tomorrow but you confidently start from a position of strength.

Redirect the “no.”

It’s not easy to hear “no” from a prospective customer, especially when you’re first starting out. After all, your business is so much a part of who you are. But it’s important to separate the two. They’re not rejecting you. They are rejecting the product or service you offer.

That means the solution lies in what you’re doing, not in who you are. In fact, you’re the one who will figure out how to do it better next time. That puts you back in control and restores your confidence.

Every business owner needs a shot of self-confidence once in a while. The trick is to have a ready supply of boosters when doubt comes knocking. Store these tricks in your emotional cupboard and take one out next time.