The Skill of Self Confidence by Dr. Ivan Joseph (Transcript)

The other one is self-talk. We all have a self-talk tape that plays in our head. Anybody go shopping and put on a pair of pants this week? If you’re a woman, the first thing that always comes: “Damn I look fat in these pants!.”

And if you’re a man, it’s the opposite: “Oh god, I got no muscle, I’m so flabby!” Right? We all have this tape that plays in our head.

As a student, if they asked me the question, it was like: “Oh, gee please professor don’t pick me, I don’t know the answer.” I’d look down. Right?

If you’re in the b…when I, let me tell you something, and the VP of business admin is here, I shouldn’t repeat this, but when they hired me as an athletics director, I sat in an architect’s meeting, and I am as dumb as a post when it comes to anything to do with numbers and angles.

And they are like: the fundibulator valve of the architectural, uh, what do you think doctor Joseph? Uh, let me look into that for you and get back to you. Right?

I was in a, oh god god, please don’t ask me, please don’t ask me. We all have this negative self-talk that goes in our head.

Guess what? There’s enough people that are telling us we can’t do it. That we’re not good enough. Why do we want to tell ourselves that? We know for a fact that thoughts influence actions. We saw it there with the video Sheldon, Dr. Levy showed.

We know that our thoughts influence actions, why do we want to say that negative self-talk to ourselves? We need to get our own self-affirmations. Muhammad Ali, what was his self-affirmation? I am the greatest! Who else is going to tell you?

There need to be quiet moments in your bedroom, quiet moments when you’re brushing your teeth. That we need to reaffirm: “I am the captain of my ship and the master of my fate!” That is my affirmation.

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I came from a school of one thousand people, I lived in a town of one thousand people for fifteen years; there’s no reason that I should be in charge of an Athletics department, building maple leaf gardens. But I am the captain of my ship and the master of my fate.

If I don’t say it, if I don’t believe it, no one else will.

How do you build self-confidence? Get away from the people who will tear you down. There’s enough of that.

Muhammad Ali, I am the greatest! There is no one better than me. There’s a difference between hubris, and ego, and false pride. It’s just reminding yourself in quiet silent moments, I put it down on a list, it’s right beside my mirror, right? about all the things that make me who I am.

Because I make enough mistakes, and the newspapers will recognize it, and people around me will recognize it; and they’ll tear me down, and pretty soon I’ll begin to believe it.

There was a time when my confidence was really low. There was a time when I took this job when I came from Iowa, I don’t know if I could do it. I had to bring out my self-confidence letter. A letter I wrote to myself when I was feeling good. Ivan, congratulations on getting your PhD before 40. Congra…I am 40, under. Congratulations on winning a national championship. Good job on raising three good kids and marrying the right woman.

I wrote a letter to myself, it was my own brag sheet. My own letter about the things I was proud of. Because there are moments, and we’ll all experience them in our career, in our lives, in our job hunting, in our relationships; when we are not feeling good about who, and what, and where we are.

And I had to bring out that letter and read it time and time again, for a period of about two weeks, to weather me through that storm. It was important.

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Stop the negative self-talk. If you watch you’ll see some athletes that have a little bandage, or a little brand around them.

Lance Armstrong is a perfect one. What’s his self-affirmation? Livestrong isn’t a brand, it was to remind him of who he was. Live strong. Then it became a brand. He would move that from one arm to the next arm, when doubt and fear came into his mind. Live strong, put it on there, let’s go. We’ll all have it, we place it.

Two ways to build self-confidence. I’m worried about my time, I’m going to tell you of one way you can build self-confidence in others. We are coaches and educators, we are teachers, we are people who will create value in the world; and in doing that, we are critical by the nature of what we do.

I am a coach, I want you to score a goal. The ball went over high. “Dang it!” The ball went high! “Thank you coach, I know that. Feedback tells me that.”

So what do we do? I need you to put your elbow here, I need you to put your knee over the ball, I need you to follow through. Boom. Land. Great.

Notice, I never made it as a professional. What can we do? We fix mistakes. When I’m fixing that mistake: “Johnny, this is terrible, you need to bend your knee, you need to do this, this.”

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