Career and Business

Five things Black women must do to stop feeling under qualified and be confident

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Have you noticed that some Black women are eager to believe they’re under qualified, while men with even fewer qualifications don’t? Why do we do this? For one thing, women are harder on ourselves. It is a HUGE reason why women, even though we’re the majority, don’t run for political office. It is why we don’t apply for certain jobs or take certain majors in school. Then we are left wondering why certain anti-woman laws exist and why some of us aren’t in certain professions. Aside from sexism and racism, which are major factors, feeling unqualified is really a confidence issue. So how do we get confident?

Have confidence. You are where you are at for a reason. It has nothing to do with luck. I dislike when people say they are lucky. Unless you were born and given everything, you got where you are because you busted your behind. Be proud of  the road you have traveled and how far you have come. It is OK to enjoy your accomplishments. Believe in your work, your knowledge and skills and most importantly believe in you.

Look, you don’t need 12 volumes of knowledge to compete. Honestly, most people don’t have one volume, and they still get promoted.  What you do need is a solid grasp of your subject, the ability to listen and comprehend facts and articulate your beliefs or stance.

Learn to hobnob. Yes, networking. Networking is more than collecting business cards. It is about building long-lasting and trusting relationships with people who will reciprocate.

“A closed mouth doesn’t get fed.” Plan your career goals and let others who will help grow your career know your goals. If upper management doesn’t know you want a job, they won’t go out of their way to help you get assignments and training. Trust me; people want to see you succeed.  Why? You deserve it and you are good at what you do.

Stop admitting your professional weaknesses at work.  Women are the first to admit in public our career weaknesses, but we refuse to play up our strengths. Why do we do this? We’re raised to believe modesty and humility were good things. They were lady like. Not at work! When you do this, you limit your opportunities and income. If a position opens up and one of the tasks happens to be something you think you are weak at, you won’t be considered for it because you already told people you can’t do it.

No more excuses sis. Ask yourself what’s the difference between you and the other person who was less qualified but moved up? Not a darn thing! All they did was let everyone know their accomplishments. They seem to be invested in the company, and they have their hands in every successful project.  That is what you need to do. Need even more motivation to be confident? Remember, this is about your income. Your bank, Sallie Mae and landlord, don’t care about your humility. They want their money and the more you put yourself out there, the more money you make! That means the quicker you can pay them off. Bye, bye debt!

Even if you think you are not ready, you are ready. Even when you think you are under qualified, you are qualified! So take a risk. Believe in yourself and put yourself out there.

A revolution always begins between two ears. Start yours today.

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