Following on from the very successful Present Youself with Confidence session presented by Kate Atkin of Aspire 2, Kelly Tennick provides a round-up of the evening’s event.
We began with an informal networking session which as usual was a great warm up for the evening. It was nice to be able to catch up with some regular faces as well as meet several new ones. No two people that walk through the door are the same so it’s great to meet such a variety of fantastic people, as well as enjoy the nibbles and wine which are always lovingly prepared for us as we arrive!
As a person who feels pretty lacking in the confidence department, this month’s JCI Cambridge work shop ‘Present Yourself With Confidence’ was one I simply could not miss, and thank God I didn’t! As usual, the workshop surpassed all my expectations and I came away at the end of the evening feeling very positive and ready to take on the world….
Presented by the wonderful Kate Atkin, the workshop provided fantastic ways to ‘train’ your thoughts to help you feel more confident, from re-directing negative focus to positive focus as well as providing hints, tips and tricks to help you appear full of confidence, even when you may not feel it inside!
The fact that all the information Kate presented was given in small chunks, along with supporting scenarios and member participation (Eeek!) made it very easily digestible and understandable – even I sat there believing I could put her methods into action.
We began with the topic of ‘Self Talk’ and discussed that a big step to becoming more confident within yourself is to accept that you are only human. Stop believing you have to be perfect, that you cannot make a mistake. Don’t grill yourself for forgetting something. After all – we are all only human and we all make mistakes.
Something I found very interesting is the fact that when you tell yourself ‘Don’t Forget…..” your brain doesn’t always register the ‘Don’t’ part and so we are in fact often telling ourselves ‘to forget!’ Maybe this is why I have a brain like a sieve. A better way to phase this so you DO remember is ‘I Must Remember….’ mmm, I must remember that!
We then discussed working with negative self talk and how to refocus it to more positive thoughts. My main area for negative thoughts is with driving. I have had two crashes in the past both caused by bad weather conditions, therefore causing me to be very nervous when driving in bad weather. I would focus all my thoughts on ‘Oh no, bad weather, I’m going to swerve into the other lane or off the road and I’m going to crash.’ Kate advised me that I was focussing on driving off the road rather than staying on it and that I needed to focus my thoughts on positive scenarios such as ‘I am going to stay straight on my side of the road, everything is going to be ok’. Something which sounds so simple, yet it is very effective and can be applied to almost any scenario – what more could you want?!
A simple but what I think will be a really effective technique to help me focus on the positive things about both myself and around me is to create a list or picture board that represents all the different positive, proud and happy situations, memories, people and achievements. this can be anything you want such as getting a new job, memories of a particular holiday, completing an important course. You can then pin this up somewhere obvious so you can see it on a daily basis, such as on the fridge door or the back of the bedroom door, to remind yourself of the most important things around you. A technique that I definately plan on putting nto practice.
We then discussed a few techniques to help you appear confident even when you don’t necessarily feel it, such as:
During presentations, stand still with both feet flat on the floor when you are making a key statement or stressing a point/important information.
Wear clothes that make you feel comfortable and confident. For example, if wearing red makes you feel happier and black makes you feel dull and less confident, then of the two wear red.
Visualise things going positively.
Remember the three V’s:
Verbal – What you say is important
Vocal – How you say it is important
Visual – How you look is important.
We then finished the workshop by writing three things we thought about somebody we didn’t know very well, to highlight the fact that how we may feel inside is not necessarily how others perceive us. Very effective as everybody suddenly became very chatty and positive after receiving the words written about them!
The evening concluded with more networking and finishing the last of the nibbles, which is always very enjoyable especially as by this time I am rather hungry!
Another great workshop from JCI Cambridge, I had a fabulous time and am very much looking forward to next month’s Business Skills Day.
Categorised in: Charity
This post was written by James Mitchell