Is Returning To Work Causing Imposter Syndrome? With lockdown easing, I’ve seen more of my clients returning to their workplaces after more than a year…
You Can Do It! How To Increase Self-Efficacy In Order To Succeed
“If I have the belief that I can do it, I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it even if I may not have it at the beginning.” Mahatma Gandhi
How often have you told yourself that you can’t do something? That you’re not smart enough, not strong enough, not kind enough, not creative enough? This isn’t necessarily due to a lack of self-confidence, but low self-efficacy and your belief in your own abilities. In this week’s post, I’ll be explaining exactly what self-efficacy is and how you can increase your belief in your own abilities, in order to succeed.
What Is Self-Efficacy?
Self-efficacy is the belief you have in your own capabilities and the belief of whether you can use your abilities to succeed. With high self-efficacy, you have the encouragement that you have the tools and skills that you need to do something, which then drives your motivation and determination to succeed.
With self-efficacy, you do not blindly assume every goal will be plain sailing, but you do believe you can complete a task successfully, and overcome any challenges that may be in your way.
Due to being so closely interlinked, it is easy to see why self-confidence and self-efficacy may seem interchangeable. However, they are different concepts. Self-confidence is your overall belief in yourself, whereas self-efficacy is your belief in your capabilities.
Is Self-Efficacy The Same As Self-Esteem?
Self-esteem can play a huge role in whether you set goals, chase dreams and overcome challenges. However, self-esteem is not the same as self-efficacy. Self-esteem is your general and overall feeling of worth. Self-esteem is how you feel about yourself in simply being you. Where self-efficacy differs is the belief in your ability to do something. The focus switches from who you are to what you can do.
With self-efficacy, you look at your capabilities and are ready for the challenge. Conversely, with self-esteem, you’ll simply decide on how you feel about yourself as a whole.
With self-esteem, self-confidence and self-efficacy, they all interact with each other and by building one aspect, you can create a cycle that improves the other aspects.
For example, if you have high self-worth, then you are more likely to be optimistic about your capabilities, which can then increase your sense of self-efficacy. Similarly, if you have the belief that you can do something, then you are likely to feel better about yourself as a whole.
The Self-Efficacy Cycle
The great thing about self-efficacy is that you can continue to grow it and foster your belief in your ability to succeed. It can work in a powerful success cycle. The more you believe in your own capacity to achieve, the more motivation you’ll have, which will push your desire to achieve. With every achievement, you’ll have more belief in your capabilities and higher self-efficacy.
But, What If You Fail?
Achieving a goal is not always easy, and you may find lots of challenges along the way. With this in mind, a sense of self-efficacy is important in allowing you to address the challenges you may face. With high self-efficacy, you won’t quit when a problem appears. Instead, you’ll use your abilities to overcome the challenge. This helps to build your resilience. With every challenge you successfully overcome, you will increase your belief in your capabilities. So, even if something feels like a failure, those with high self-efficacy will have a higher level of resilience, making them more likely to succeed and recover from failure.
Self-Efficacy In Context
Due to its closeness with confidence, it can be hard to distinguish exactly what self-efficacy is. Some of the ways you may experience self-efficacy include;
- Not feeling talented at something, but knowing you have the tools to learn
- Worrying about parenthood, but believe you have what it takes to raise a child well
- Taking a new job that you’ve never done before, but believing you are equipped and knowledgeable enough to excel
- Having relationship breakdowns, but feeling optimistic about future love.
The Benefits Of Self-Efficacy
Self-efficacy is a fantastic attribute to have and offers many benefits such as;
- Feeling more optimistic and positive
- Increasing motivation to succeed
- Ability to bounce back and feel resilient
- Better decision making to fuel future growth
- Improved health with the belief that you can make a difference to your personal health
- Combat negative habits when you believe you can (e.g. if you think you can quit smoking, then it increases the likelihood that you will)
- Not allowing negative emotions to block your future efforts.
How To Build Your Self Efficacy
The self-efficacy concept was developed by Bandura, who said there are four main sources to improve self-efficacy.
This is where you set a goal, take on a new challenge and succeed. Even if there are challenges and failures, you learn how to overcome adversities and build your resilience.
Build it: Try something new! Take a course, join a class or take part in something you’ve always wanted to do.
Described by Bandura as vicarious experiences, this is when you observe and emulate your role models. With this, it can help to surround yourself with positive people who show competence in the fields you’re interested in.
Build it: Try networking and joining social or business groups that will help you to connect with people who inspire you. It can even be a case of following positive role models on social media.
Positive and trusted voices can really help you to believe in your abilities. Studies show that even positive self-talk can improve performance. So by talking to yourself, you can persuade yourself that you have the capabilities to succeed that can strengthen your self-efficacy.
Build it: If self-talk isn’t for you, a mentor can be a fantastic positive voice that is rooting for you and can build your self-belief.
Physiological And Emotional States
How you are feeling, your health and wellness can all impact your levels of self-efficacy. By practising self-compassion, you can not only improve your physical and mental health, but you can bolster your self-efficacy too
Build it: Take time to practice self-care and prioritise your health and wellbeing.
Following the four ways Bandura set out for building self-efficacy, James Maddux added a fifth way to increase self-efficacy and that’s through visualisation or imaginal experience. By visualising yourself achieving future success, you can then build the belief that you can succeed.
Build it: Read this blog post to build your ideal visualisation for success.
Let’s Help You To Succeed
Whether there’s a goal you are aiming for, or you don’t have the self-belief to even realise your true capabilities, hypnotherapy can really help. Whether through in-person appointments or virtual sessions, I can help you to discover what is holding your self-efficacy back and help you to realise your true potential.
To find out more, book your free telephone consultation today by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.