Want more confidence? Follow these four steps

How confident are you? Would you prefer to be fearless? Or at least a bit more confident than right now? And would you like a way to create more confidence every day? Well, I can share a simple method to do just this, which comes from a man called Dan.

I’ve been attending an entrepreneurial coaching course for the last two years.

In fact, it is THE entrepreneurial coaching course. Called Strategic Coach, it’s had 18,000 entrepreneurs through its doors since 1989, running workshops across North America and in London (where I go). So they know a thing or two about coralling the messed-up heads of business-self-starters.

Introducing Dan & Babs

Strategic Coach was founded by a chap called Dan Sullivan. I spent a day every 90 days last year with him. In Toronto. I flew there for a day’s group workshop. Why? Because he’s a genius, makes my life simpler and is an amazing shaggy-dog-story-teller with a wry sense of humour. His partner Babs co-founded the company and runs things across their global business. She’s an inspiration and also fantastic fun.

Babs doing a dab

Change your game

If you want to know what makes this duo tick watch this documentary. It’s called Game Changer, as that’s what Sullivan encourages his clients to do.

Change your game, play a better game, one that works harder for your customers, and for you. Simplify and grow by 10x. Not just financially (though that’s nice) but in your relationships (both work & play), your free time, your work substance. You should aim to only be doing what you love doing, and would happily do for free.

What ‘game’ are you playing?

Sullivan is in his 70’s and working through a 25 year plan. He’s never retiring. By the way, we stole his “25 year framework” to underpin our mission at Getahead Festival (so thanks Dan!).

Why retire when he can do what he loves, get paid handsomely and take half the year off? Would you retire in those circumstances?

Ever growing confidence

Anyway, back to the point. If you want to grow your confidence every day, follow this process:

  1. Make a commitment to do something
  2. You will then feel scared: ignore it, crack on, use your courage
  3. By cracking on you’ll learn new capabilities
  4. This will give you greater confidence

You simply repeat this over and over and over. You overcome your fears and demonstrate to yourself that you can do things, that you don’t need permission from people, or to have earnt a PhD in whatever it is you are facing.

The 4 C’s

This is a process Sullivan calls ‘The 4 C’s’:

  1. Commitment
  2. Courage
  3. Capability
  4. Confidence

This is precisely opposite to how most believe you build Confidence. Most think you have to build your Capabilities to an “expert” level (undefined). Which will then give you the Courage to make a Commitment.

The problem is, when do you know when you have enough Capability? You’ll keep at it for years and years, building your accreditations but losing Confidence, as you haven’t had to apply your learning in the real world.

So if you want to build confidence, first: Commit.

Feel the fear and do it anyway

It’s liberating to understand you don’t need The Perfect CV to progress a project. Want a concrete example? I’ll give you one: Getahead Festival (the blog for which you’re reading right now).

I had the idea for Getahead Festival in conversation with my l’il bro and a great guy called Adam. It was precisely the kind of thing that stays as “pub talk”. A 24 hour festival? Are you bonkers??


I’d never run a festival, had no team, no funding, sparse amounts of content and no venue (plus very few in London have a 24 hour licence). Why commit to something you don’t know you can deliver?

Well I did.

And trust me, it would’ve been far easier not to.

I’ve got a lot on, including a small business, three daughters, a wife, dog & photography-taking habit, plus miscellaneous other things that eat my time. I also simply couldn’t afford for Getahead to lose money, take a lot of my time or to be a spectacular flop (although there’s still time for that #LOL).

To make this happen I needed Courage. To recognise and acknowledge the risks, the unknowns, but to have the guts to confront them.

By applying practical restrictions (I couldn’t do it all myself) I had to find people with the Capability to deliver a 24 hour event at a decent standard. Enter Jenni & the dudes at AEI. Together we can make this happen by pooling our capabilities. We have partnered with other well-connected people in this space, who can help us deliver the vision. An open collaboration, where everyone wins, a positive-sum mindset.

This has given me even more Confidence to push forward.

Here you can see me styling it out with Jenni

The 4 C’s are a positive feedback loop which I now trust subconsciously, applying them across my life to create ever-growing Confidence. I’m changing the way I play my ‘game’ and in the process expanding my network of amazing collaborative partners. All of which teaches me new Capabilities.

But don’t worry, I’m still sh**ting myself.

What can you commit to, today?

So think about what’s holding you back. Is your lack of confidence really from a lack of capability, or from a lack of courage? Why not make a commitment, set a date, a time to do something you want to do, but don’t know how. Maybe publish it, or share with your friends.

This concrete action will make you afraid.

I typed “afraid” into an image search…

But fear is a normal part of the process. Without it, you won’t have the energy and oomph to learn the skills you’ll need to succeed, to not fall on your face.

So embrace all the things you don’t know, haven’t done before, or have limited knowledge of. Your Confidence is simply a by-product of your ability to step into the unknown. That’s your path to success.

Dan Kirby
Creator & Co-founder Getahead Festival

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