Perception is a powerful thing. What you believe about yourself has the power to change your reality. Henry Ford is famous for saying, “Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.” He was certainly on to something. When leaders stop believing in themselves, the consequence is that they stop taking the necessary actions to develop themselves into better leaders. When you don’t really think you can be successful, you won’t even try. The results of your lack of confidence will bleed into your work and you’ll end up being just as terrible as you think you are.
On the other hand, if you see yourself as having potential for success, you’ll do the necessary work to realize that potential. You’ll take the necessary steps to improve yourself, because you will actually believe that you can improve. You’ll get up earlier. You’ll study harder. You’ll listen better. You’ll focus longer. You’ll communicate more clearly. In the areas you most need to work on, you’ll be willing to put in the effort to inch yourself forward. If you believe you can do it, you will almost certainly get it done.
All of that being said, it’s not just about you. How you see yourself also influences how other people see you. If you don’t have confidence in your ability to lead, how can you expect those you are leading to have confidence in you? On the other hand, if you are fully confident in your ability to lead, you can be sure that others will be just as confident. How you see yourself is the foundation on which all other transformation is based.