To move successfully into self-employment you need to believe in yourself, your capability and your ability to make things happen. In essence, you need to know you can make it a success whatever happens. 

No-one is going to be totally self-confident all the time. As a very successful business man once said “If things are going really well you can’t get overexcited because you’re not a genius; but if things get difficult you can’t get too downhearted because you’re not a fool either”. 

Sometimes the biggest risk is doing nothing and without risk there is likely to be no reward. 

Here are 3 ways you can use a simple 1 to 10 scale to develop the confidence you will need to become self-employed. 

1.  Personal reflection. Thinking about a scale of 1 to 10 where 10 is that you have total confidence you can make a success of self-employment and 1 is no confidence at all, where would you put yourself today? Now the typical inclination of most people is to then focus on all the reasons they’re not at 10. Instead of that, I’m going to suggest that you think about all the things that put you as high as you are – however high that is – and not lower. What knowledge do you have that will help? What skills do you have that will help? What experience do you have that will help? What aspects of your personality will help? What other transitions have you made in your life in the past? What helped in those cases? 

2.  Feedback from others.  Think about all the feedback you have had from others – friends, family, colleagues, previous bosses. What do other people know and say about you that gives you confidence? Ask them for their honest answers to the above questions. 

3.  Focus on small steps.  Focussing on trying to get to 10 can have the opposite effect to the one you’re trying to achieve. It can seem such a far way off that it paralyses and demotivates you. So don’t worry about 10 for now. Instead, think about what would be different if you were just one point higher up the scale. Would you have developed a particular skill? Would you have obtained feedback from other self-employed individuals? Would you have researched your business idea or something else?   What needs to happen to increase your confidence by one point? What small first steps could you take to move towards that? 

By thinking about what’s already giving you confidence, getting feedback from others and focussing on small steps you can break it down to some immediate, manageable actions that you can take to make progress.