Selling is not just about sales skills, it’s about having the self-belief and confidence to use them. The same applies to managing and leading a team. Or making a presentation. Or negotiating with a major client.
Wherever you are on the ladder of success, if your goal is to go higher you will encounter self-doubt from time to time – think about it, the only way you could have 100% confidence to do that bigger job would be if you were already doing it.
In this training video Robin Fielder, LDL founder, shares how you can boost your confidence immediately.
Your self-belief is your most valuable asset. The best of the best in life, believe in themselves. And guess what? Believing in yourself makes others believe in you as well. So how can you build your self-belief? Here are 3 ways:
Let me ask you who do you talk to most each day? Yourself, so what do you say when you talk to yourself. Does it lift you up, or does it pull you down? Because it will not leave you untouched.
What is your internal dialogue before you pick up the phone or walk into the prospect’s office? What input do you give to your very powerful subconscious mind about your intent and ambition?
Let’s keep this very simple, say: “I’m selling well. I’m selling well. I’m selling well. I love my job. I’m the best. I’m selling well. I’m selling well.” It takes the edge off your nerves and sends a strong signal to your mind that you’re performing at your best. Say it long enough and it starts to become part of you.
Contrast that with a person who goes into a sales call, and says, “I’m going through a bad patch. I’m going through a bad patch.” You say something enough times, what happens? You believe it. But we can choose what we say. Losers say negative things. Winners deliberately make an effort to say positive things, but let’s understand each other: It is natural, and it’s easier, to say negative things. It takes determination to say positive things, so use great self-talk.
You may be thinking, “Robin, I’ve tried this stuff. I’ve tried getting up in the morning saying, ‘I feel great, I feel great,’ but a little voice in the back of my head says, ‘No, you don’t, you lying hound, you feel dreadful.'” If you just say it once or twice, it won’t make any difference. It’s got to become a habit. If you catch yourself talking negatively to yourself, say stop, delete, and then replace it with positive self-talk. It makes a difference. So that’s the first way to build self-belief and confidence. Highlight it in your training.
The second way of building self-belief is to replay past success, whatever we think about grows stronger.
Let me ask you, in your experience, when is the very best time to make a sale?
Just after you’ve made one. You’re on a roll, you can’t wait to get out there and do it again. So before every sales presentation or important phone call, what should you do? Think of the last time you sold well. Replay it over and over.
Have a virtual video in your imagination, and before every sales call, be it on the phone, face to face or on your feet, replay the last time you did it well.
If we think of all the times in the past where we felt confident, then we will feel more confident now, and that will carry over to a forthcoming challenge. But if we think about all the times where we lacked confidence in the past, then we will lack confidence now, and that will carry over to a forthcoming challenge.
Replay past success. Winners replay what went right. Losers replay, over and over what went wrong. Of course, we must learn from what went wrong, but relive success. Borrow confidence from the past. Replay highlights, not lowlights.
The third way to build self belief is to pre-play or forward play future success. This is visualisation, mental rehearsal, and it’s one of the most useful skills you can ever learn. Before commencing any task we rehearse it in our imagination.
Most of us instinctively use it to a certain extent. Have you ever mentally rehearsed an interview or making a speech or playing a sport? Most of us use it but we only use it to a fraction of its potential. Mental rehearsal is widely used in the sports world, but it works just as well in business.
Winners see the act of winning in advance. They know that what you see is who you’ll be. Lewis Carroll, who wrote Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, put it well. He said, “It’s a poor memory that only works backwards.” We can use the exact same biology we use for past memories, to lay down what’s called future memories.
Whatever it is you want to achieve – three words – see it first.
If you have an important sales call tomorrow, in your imagination be one minute after its successful completion, you were amazing, you were at your best, see it first. Lock onto that picture. It is especially powerful to use this exercise just before dropping off to sleep at night and first thing on waking in the morning, see it first. The mind completes the picture. Do jot that phrase down.
I have three kids and I’ve been involved with peak performance training almost my entire career. If I was allowed to teach my kids just one concept from all that material it would be this, the mind completes the picture.
I’m a huge fan of Tina Turner. A few years ago, she played the O2 Arena aged 70. 18,000 people, she’s on stage belting it out. She’s 70. I know some 70-year-olds who are falling apart, and she was interviewed, by the Express I think, and they asked, “Tina, on stage, you’re 70, you were incredible. What’s the secret?” And she said, “I see myself as energised and young.” Interesting choice of words. “I see myself as energised and young.” Which poses the question how do you see yourself? In private with no one else around how do you see yourself?
The mind completes the picture but you can change the picture. So whatever it is you want to achieve, see it first.
When I was a young salesperson, in my twenties, Ben Feldman was unquestionably one of the top salespeople on the planet, a financial services salesperson. He sold insurance. During his career he personally sold $1.8 billion of insurance. He personally outsold the entire sales force of many of his competitors.
What was his secret?
Well he had many of them but one of his secrets was – he knew the importance of mental tuning. Before calling on a prospect, he would say to himself – “This client is desperately under insured, thank goodness I’ve called”.
We can learn from that. Whatever it is we sell, before contacting a prospect let’s see them as desperately in need of what we offer. Thank goodness I’ve called! That picture tweaks our mindset. It’s a simple training skill, but it’s these simple skills that help us to be at our best when it counts.