high achiever

High Achievers, Success and Confidence: The Top Myths

High Achievers, Success and Confidence: The Top Myths. 

What do you think of when you think of low confidence?

Perhaps you may think of someone who seeks approval and validation? Or perhaps someone who is critical of themselves, compares themselves to others or does not believe in their own capabilities? Alternatively perhaps you might see an image of a person who is unfulfilled in their finances, careers or relationships?

However, what if the high achievers you would rarely think of also harbour their own feelings of low confidence and insecurities? Rarely does anyone proudly shout out that they lack confidence for personal or professional reasons. Yet, experiencing low confidence is something that everyone (and I mean everyone) has had a taste of!

The top 6 myths of high achievement, success and confidence

Myth 1: High achievers and ambitious people never experience low confidence!

Someone once said to me “leaders, role models and high achievers are incredibly confident and self assured. Why on earth would they need coaching?!”. It’s partly true that high-achievers need a certain amount of confidence. However, whilst these individuals may not always show their insecurities, they are also only human. The very term ‘high achiever’ can also be a catalyst for feeling the stress and pressures of fulfilling expectations, needing to be intellectually, emotionally and physically resilient, leading with confidence, motivating others and trying to hold it altogether. This shows that just because someone seemingly has it all together and appears to be superhuman, they may be burying feelings of low self esteem, pressure and stress behind closed doors.

Myth 2: Being a workaholic, multi-tasking and perfectionism are all signs of strength, dedication and commitment!

Society and culture often praises the people who are perfectionists, who overwork, or who focus solely on overcompensating to reach their goals. It’s true that sometimes we all need to burn the midnight oil and these acts of dedication show great commitment. However, the very act of overcompensating can also mean that you may be feeling the need to do more, to push yourself to be better than you are, or that you feel you’re not ok or that you’re not enough.

Myth 3: High achievers always feel comfortable being seen, heard and showing up!

High achievers are not always comfortable feeling seen, heard or exposed. For example, some people fear being seen or hear and showing up as themselves for fear of rejection or judgment. In this case, some individuals may hide and protect themselves and their insecurities behind a layer or two of masked confidence, make-up, power dressing or suits. Alternatively for others, they may feel more comfortable hiding underneath baggy clothes or not speaking up or being seen which can also be a sign they don’t feel good enough.

Myth 4: ‘Me time’ is a luxury not a necessity!

Not giving yourself  time for self-care and constantly running at 100 miles an hour is not a sign of superhuman strength. It’s a sign that you might also feel guilty for giving yourself ‘me time’.

I often use the metaphor of a car running on an empty tank. You wouldn’t drive your car on an empty tank, so why would you do the same to yourself? Also burn out and stress can be signs that you have overcompensated because you don’t feel good enough. This can often lead to lack of self-care, burn out, illness and could be a long-term risk affecting performance, productivity and progression.

Myth 5: High achievers never compare themselves to anyone else

Rarely do we see what goes on behind closed doors. Just because someone is a high achiever does not mean they don’t compare themselves to others. A high-achiever, experiencing low confidence, will be looking over their shoulder to see who might be the next in line to compete or succeed them!

There’s a great quote which says, “We compare our own behind the scenes with someone else’s highlight reel!” Yet it’s often easy to forget that anyone, regardless of their level of achievement, can be prone to comparison.

Myth 6: If you’re successful within your career you must be successful in your personal life and relationships!

People can sometimes assume that because someone is successful in their careers they must be confident in all areas of their life. However, some people throw themselves into work 24/7 because they feel confident and safe with this part of their lives as opposed to their personal lives. Often people can lack confidence in their personal life just as others would in their professional life.

Next Steps

If you’re a high-achiever and you lack confidence, self-esteem or experience role model or leadership loneliness in either your career or personal life, then why not connect with me to find out how Clarity, Confidence & Success Coaching can provide a confidential space to help you to change your mindset, stop perfectionism, improve your confidence and boost your self-esteem from within!