Is this key to self confidence the last thing you might expect?
22nd March 2019
Are you your own worst enemy, do you sabotage yourself before you even start?
Do you find yourself day dreaming about what COULD be, but never actually getting started because secretly, deep down you don't think you can do it - even when you convince yourself out loud, a quiet little voice in the back of your mind whispers "maybe someone but not me"?
Maybe you blame it on external factors such as not enough time but ultimately, we make time for the things that are important to us.
The problem is confidence - you don't believe that you can. "Self-efficacy refers to an individual's belief in his or her capacity to execute behaviours necessary to produce specific performance attainments" (Bandura, 1977). As Ghandi so famously put it
"Your beliefs become your thoughts. Your thoughts become your words. Your words become your actions. Your actions become your habits. Your habits become your values. Your values become your destiny".
Have you ever wonder why people with mediocre talent do better than people with amazing talent? It's because they believe that they have the ability to succeed whereas the person with amazing talent does not - they have that little voice of doubt in the back of their mind too and it over-rides all the evidence pointing towards their amazingness.
It's not all doom and gloom you CAN train your brain to be more confident so that you can achieve your dreams! According to Bandura, there are 4 sources of self efficacy.
This is where you actually have success in mastering a task or controlling an environment. (Akhtar, 2017)
Pole dancing has helped hundreds of women improve their self efficacy because every spin you learn is further proof that you CAN do things that you first thought you couldn't. All it takes is a little practice, persistence and patience and voilà! You have success!
Self efficacy can come from observing the people around us - especially when we consider those people to be similar to ourselves. (Akhtar, 2017)
In a pole dancing class you are surrounded by women similar to you. You all watch the instructor demonstrate how to do the move but most people still think that it's something beyond their realm of capability - until they see another student do it! Then suddenly the move seems more achievable than it did a moment ago! With a few tries you have it!
When influential people in your life tell you can achieve and succeed - you start to believe it. People such as; your parents, teachers, coaches and managers. (Akhtar, 2017)
Even Wonder Woman had a coach! And when things got really tough in battle she remembered the things her coaches said to her and pushed through all obstacles and pain to win the battle. One of the best things about pole dancing is the tribe of women that surround you; every class, every move, every day they are cheering you on! Your instructor is there too; guiding you through the moves, keeping you safe as you learn and celebrating your successes! This environment provides an abundance of verbal persuasion to get you believing in you!
Emotional and Physiological States.
This refers to whether all of your physiological needs are satisfactorily met, for example have you been sleeping adequately and are not hangry. Stress and depression can have an impact on how we perceive our abilities - generally we suspect a poor performance if we are stressed emotionally or physiologically. (Akhtar, 2017)
The art of dancing and even exercise in general has been proven to improve mental health through the release of happy endorphins such as dopamine. Pole dancing is such a physically and mentally challenging sport that it provides a great distraction from the trials and tribulations of life, which means you will finish a class feeling significantly better than when you arrived. Relieving emotional stress will significantly affect your ability to cope with your situation and improve your self efficacy.
(nope, not a typo) "Psychologist James Maddux has suggested a fifth route to self-efficacy through “imaginal experiences”, the art of visualising yourself behaving effectively or successfully in a given situation". (Akhtar, 2017).
So day dream away - but make it a very specific day dream including all your senses on how it will feel to succeed! Then sit down and turn that dream into a goal! Define what you want to achieve, and then break that goal down into smaller steps to include things that you can do every day to work towards that goal. Make sure you keep a record of all the little things you achieve and celebrate those achievements! Every step closer is worthy of acknowledgement - and makes the journey more enjoyable! At Diamond Dance we have 'Sticker Charts' of all the moves you have to achieve before you can move up to the next level! Each star on your chart is a celebration and symbol that you CAN achieve something. Each time you move up a level it's a bigger celebration - more proof that you are capable. It improves your self efficacy and over time, you start to see that confidence you have developed in your physical pole dancing ability, starts to flow over to the rest of your life; such as your job and your dreams.
You stop listening to that little voice in the back of your mind that says you can't, because you have so much proof that you CAN!
Here's a couple of student experiences:
"Before I started pole dancing, I didn't think I would be able to do anything and I would be ungraceful.
It took my mum and sister 2 years to convince me to try a class! After my first class I felt amazing and free!
I've noticed that I've lost weight, I'm more toned and I feel more comfortable being myself. I don't stress so much about things now which makes my job easier and I am happier in general.
I feel more comfortable now to wear clothes that are a little more sexy!"
"I thought that pole dancing could be used to gain confidence. My sister talked me into trying a class and I thought it was fun - but I was sore the next day!
Since starting pole dancing, I've noticed that I'm more toned and stronger physically. I'm more confident with the way I do things and I'm happier.
Pole dancing has changed the way I feel about my body, I am more confident."
"I thought pole dancing was an awesome sport that required lots of strength. I thought the women doing it were extremely talented.
I was looking to gain more muscle and strength from the Conditioning class and Pole classes offered at Diamond Dance.
After my first class I felt great and couldn't wait for my next class! I loved it!
I've noticed that I'm getting stronger physically and mentally. I've noticed that I'm more confident in my own skin."
If you would like to feel for yourself the changes pole dancing can make in your life, try our Intro Offer. You get 6 classes over 2 weeks to try!
See how much you change in just 2 weeks with us.