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Time to Ditch Your Doubts - Cookies Crumble not Confidence

Eilidh Milnes
cookies crumble, not confidence

And The Cookie Crumbled... 

Chris Davidson and I were sharing a coffee and cookie when he said, "I have a big favour to ask, Eilidh. You know we're travelling together to the conference in Holland?" "Yes..." I replied with slight hesitation. "Well," he continued, "I need to go direct to work in Johannesburg; can you drive my car back to UK?" "Of course I can," I hear myself saying.

Now when I got back to the office, my husband Jay quizzed me as I came through the door. "OK, what have you just agreed to do?" (That man reads me so-o well!)  
And when I explained, he went very quiet, if not a little pale. You see I have not driven alone on the continent for a very long time indeed; even in UK these days Jay does most of the driving. Read the backstory on Perfectionism, the Confidence Stealer.  

Nagging Doubts 

Have you ever agreed to help someone or to do something and then panicked? Can I do that you ask yourself, as nagging doubts creep in. You begin to see problems and then question your ability to deliver. At this point you either give in, or you make a conscious decision to recall previous times when you've been successful. 

At time times like these you need to ditch your doubts, can't afford to let your confidence crumble. Do everything you can to ensure success; to make the task as easy, simple and safe as possible. Now to be fair, Jay did much of the preparation for me; he programmed the navigator, printed maps (incidentally I don't read maps...) and wrote out detailed instructions. He told me, "If you get lost, just call me." Jay has an amazing brain, I reckon he's powered by GPS!  

The conference was outstanding, I met incredible, inspiring and intriguing people It was a privilege for me to address fellow professional speakers. View footage here. I made new friends and if our plans work out we'll be speaking and globe trotting together in future years. 
One of the highlights was the Gala Dinner with speaker Tim Gard. During the meal, I was chatting to Doug De Vitre and heard myself spontaneously saying, "You are going to Rotterdam? Me too, I can give you a lift Doug..." Now, remember I only have directions to Europort. I have not driven alone on the continent for decades!

Enthusiasm versus Skill

Now take these facts into consideration: 
  • I had not driven alone on the continent for three decades
  • I was responsible for my colleague's car
  • I only had directions to Europort
Never mind I told myself, you can do it! you have the primed navigator.

Stay with me, it gets better...

And so the time comes to check out from Hotel Ter Duin. Did I mention the fact that my travelling companion, Doug is American? It's his first time in Europe. He doesn't  know where he is going either! And can't read maps! Never mind I remind myself, you have that clever gadget, which Jay has programmed. 

Yes, you've guessed... the sat. nav. did not work! Each time I switched it on, it was recalculating! "Do a U turn," the gadget bleated, "Take the next exit, turn left and then head north for 500 metres then go west..." Now I don't do directions at the best of times in UK and I certainly can't tell east from west in Holland! So what do you do in such times? Well I don't know what Doug's version of this tale will be, but as I recall we just went for it! We set off. The delightful Judith Moonen had said, "Head for Den Haag." So we did. Then we went off piste and had an adventure, stopping at fuel station to get directions to Doug's destination and believe it or not - we arrived in perfect time for his appointment. 

What can you learn from such a situation?

  • Even very confident people can question their abilities
  • Preparation and planning counters doubts
  • Ask for help
  • Seek out experts and people with experience; use out of the box thinking (such as asking a stranger.) And when all else fails, do as I did.... and phone home! Yes Jay's amazing navigation skills directed me out of Rotterdam despite being located in a totally different country!
I'm glad to report that I travelled safely back to UK. How do I feel as I recall this adventure? Well rather pleased with myself actually and happy that I could help a friend and a fellow speaker on his travels. Jay and I are already planning our next trip. Personally my confidence not crumbled, in fact it has been boosted. And I'm confident that I can overcome whatever may go awry! 

Discover more on my new website: Captain Positive! 
And awesome new mood boosters postcard shop... Easy Moods!