By Victoria Ayodeji
onfidence is the driving force behind self-assuredness and success. It's the key ingredient that empowers individuals to step forward and pursue their goals. But is confidence something innate, or is it learned over time?
The topic of The Power To Build Confidence was the focus of an intimate round table discussion at the Stack World Women and Power Summit.
This roundtable discussion brought together an inspiring line up of women from diverse fields who have harnessed the power of confidence to achieve remarkable success in their lives. Firstly, we had none other than Stef-Sword Williams host the roundtable discussion. She is the founder of platform and event series Fck Being Humble, having refined her method of imparting self-worth and self-promotion skills by giving talks at industry panels and events. Stef was named Forbes Under 30 for Europe and the top 100 women changing the creative industry two years in a row. She has worked on brand partnerships with Estee Lauder, Linkedin, Puma, Liberty's, Linktree, Pinterest, Indeed and Stylist.
She was joined by Fisayo Longe who is the founder of Kai Collective, a London-based community brand of attainable luxury clothing, intentionally crafted for ultimate confidence. They make unique thoughtful pieces that fill the gap for statement high-quality pieces that don’t break the bank and inspire her customers to take up space and reject societal limitations.
Also sharing her words of wisdom on the roundtable discussion, was Manager to Skepta and Sarz, Co-Founder of Metallic Inc and Founder of Homecoming, Grace Ladoja MBE. She creates indelible links between artists, brands, and youth culture. A tireless champion of creativity, Grace’s unique insight shapes global trends and experiences as she strives to build economic independence in the Black community.
Founder of the clothing rental app HURR, Victoria Prew also joined the roundtable discussion. As an award-winning entrepreneur and CEO who thrives in challenging environments and has a strong track record of driving change. Victoria uses excellent strategic ability to get alignment around a vision and combines this with a collaborative approach to inspire cross functional teams to (over) deliver. Not afraid to challenge the status quo.
Lastly, Lydia Pang CEO and Co-Founder MØRNING a creative strategy studio. Lydia Pang is a storyteller and creative director who in her words has ‘haunted’ the halls of Nike, Refinery29, Anomaly and M&C Saatchi. She is a self-professed goth and is currently launching her own studio and brand back home in Wales. Lydia recently released a limited-run zine on Hakka cuisine called Eat Bitter, which combines her love for punk aesthetic with the food of her heritage.
Whether you want to build confidence to leave your comfort zone, rewrite your own rules, lead in the workplace or embrace all things self-love this session empowered Stack World members with actionable strategies that equipped them with the tools to enable their inner confidence to flourish for the rest of 2023 and beyond. Here's a recap of some of the discussion points that were shared during the roundtable:
Nature or Nurture: Is confidence something you are born with, or is it developed over time? The age-old debate was a key theme that was at the centre of the discussion.
How Our Past Affects Our Confidence: Our panellists delved into how their upbringing has influenced their confidence and shaped their levels of self-assurance over time and helped to propel them towards achieving their wildest dreams and embrace life out of their comfort zones with dogged determination.
The Power of Mentorship: During the roundtable the women shared their experiences of when they feel the least confident and discussed effective ways to build their confidence over time, viewing confidence as a muscle that needs to be worked on consistently for maximum effect. Mentoring and peer support play integral roles in empowering women to be able to build and embrace their confidence, pursue leadership roles, put themselves forward for new opportunites and reach their goals with passion and vigour.
Mindset Shifts and Male-Dominated Environments: The impact of having an abundant mindset on building confidence was examined. The idea that there's room for everyone to succeed and thrive was a key aspect of this conversation. Confidence-building strategies for pitching for business investment were shared, enabling any members who are on their entrepreneurship journeys to think differently about how they can approach fundraising for their businesses and projects with self-assuredness.
In environments that are often male-dominated and hyper-masculine, the discussion revolved around how to find the confidence to hold one's own, especially through quiet confidence and expertise in one's niche. They also discussed the strategies to exhibit quiet confidence through non-verbal cues, ultimately highlighting that confidence can manifest in various forms and in different environments.
Building Connections: Building the confidence to approach and connect with people you admire was a discussion theme that resonated with many members. They explored how you can overcome any feelings of lost confidence due to comparison and insecurity and regain your confidence again on your journey to striving for future achievements and success. The art of being confident is a skill that always needs to be nurtured and thus it is important to note that confidence is not static but instead dynamic, it ebbs and flows over time and across the many seasons and stages of our lives.
This candid discussion was eye-opening for many of the members in attendance and offered an opportunity to explore the often complex and vulnerable world of confidence building from various angles and perspectives. For those who missed the session in person and want to build greater confidence, you can watch the replay in The Stack World App on Stack TV.
Photos courtesy of Kiran Gidda.
How do you master confidence? Are some people just born with it?
By Victoria Ayodeji
The ‘Pure O’ or ‘purely obsessional’ type of OCD is characterised by distressing, intrusive thoughts and mental rituals to cope with them. Rae Elliman shares her experience of living with – and learning to manage – these hidden compulsions