The Art of Confidence

Ever face a lack of confidence or intimidation?

We can lack confidence in our parenting, in our work, the way we look.  We discover it in our self-talk : “I’m not sure I could do that”, “I’m not sure they like me”

This message will help you build your confidence and find ways to overcome fear or intimidation.  I am believing this will help:

The Art of Confidence

See you in Church!

What the greatest Team Leaders do …

I want to show you that a great team is helped to become great by the leadership style of the Team Leader.

Leadership ‘style’ is almost as varied as personality.  However, there are 3 types of leadership traits that are absolutely essential to the success of a team.  If these aren’t present ‘team’ will be dis-functional.

1.  Consultative Leadership – it should be the default behaviour of a team leader to consult with his or her team.  Although decisive in outcome a team leader is not primarily directive in nature.  The level of involvement of the team in idea generation and decision making should grow as time goes on and trust and cohesion is built.  Begin consulting on the ‘easy give-aways’ before you involve on the tough decisions.  This leader will delegate, involve and consult.

Note to a team member – your ability to read the team agenda and not primarily promote your own agenda will make you a valued member to be in the consultative process.

2.  Coaching Leadership – where there is good delegation there also needs to be coaching.  Coaching is the process you go through that empowers the delegated team member.  You tell, you show and they do.  You feedback, talk through and so there is active participation in team development.  To delegate and not coach is to ‘dump’.

Note to a team member – your ability to allow yourself to be coached is essential to the success of the team and your on-going development path.

3.  Directive Leadership – because outcome is what outsiders see as the result of good leadership then its easy to think the leader has been decisively directional in style to get there. Therefore a big mistake of many new team leaders is to adopt a very directional style of leadership as a norm.  Directional leadership should not need to be used all the time.  This will not produce a mature team.  However, a team leader needs to be able to bring direction and there is a time for he or she to simply make the decision.  There are moments where the leader needs to break into the collaboration and make the final decision and there are times where collaboration is just not appropriate.  In the early stages of forming a team directional style of leadership will certainly be needed on tougher decisions until the team is robust enough to be involved.

Note to a team member – be understanding in circumstances where a decision seems to made for you rather than with you, let the leader lead.

I’m believing with you today that you grow in your productivity and success as a leader and team member.

Think about joining The Challenge and grow your leadership.

What the Greatest Teams Have …

The greatest teams have certain things going on that make them great.

There is no team without what I call ‘A Reason‘.  Some call this a vision.  The word vision might seem a little too much for some team functions. But every team must have ‘A Reason’ for existing.  What is your purpose?

There is no team without a ‘Team Leader‘.  About 15 years ago companies experimented with the concept of what they called ‘Self-managed Teams’ – it failed!  A team will never work at its maximum ability without a Team Leader – leadership is essential.  A leadership that can adopt a style suitable for any given moment of the day – coaching, directive, consultative, listening and developmental.

Of course, needless to say, a Team is not a team without ‘Team members‘.  It’s here where there are some key behaviours that can make the difference in being ‘great’.  Let me list a few:

Ownership : A great team has team members that feel fully responsible for the success or failure of the ‘Reason’ for the Team.  Ownership, language like ‘My Team’ and ‘Our Goals’, is an essential force in any team.

Flexibility : A group of individuals will stay rigid to their individual roles, a great Team will be flexible in what each person needs to do to achieve the ‘Reason’ for the Team.  Huge corporations have closed overnight due to the inability to be flexible.  McDonalds is a great example of a flexible mindset.  When healthy eating hit the conscience of western cities they responded by updating their menu with a ‘healthy option’ – salads and smoothies!  They would have joined the historic great failures if they didn’t do this.  Everyone does what it takes to make the team’s Reason succeed.

Role Clarity : Not in contrast to but in support of my above point, it is also important team members are very clear what their specific role is in the team.  There is always need for flexibility but only once everyone is clear what their default position is.

Self-confidence : No team member should feel completely lost to the great ‘Reason’.  If each person doesn’t come contributing with full self-confidence the team actually loses out.  You have more to offer when your self-esteem is healthy.  Warning, this may at times create a few frictions as egos rub together – but better this than a team not fully performing.

Self-aware : In Daniel Goleman’s studies on Emotional Intelligence he lists Self-awareness and self-management as 2 of the 4 competencies that determine Emotional Intelligence – a measure of an individual’s future success.  To function successfully in a team you need to be aware of your own behaviour, your strengths and weaknesses.  For example : If you are a loud, dominate figure then tone it down in meetings to ensure others voices get heard.  If you are a quiet and thoughtful person, come to a team meeting prepared so you are more likely to be ready to contribute.

Communication : No team will be great without healthy communication.  Let me outline 3 types of communication that are essential:

  1. Information Communication – things you don’t need to know to fulfill the direct tasks of your specific role but is relevant to the overall ‘Reason’ of the team.  Its essential for continual buy-in that team members are up to date on other team member’s activities to a certain degree. Communication for just information sake is a good thing.
  2. Functional Communication – this is communication between team members things that relate directly to the tasks at hand for that person.  In order to function as a team we have to regularly think ‘Who else needs to know this’, ‘What do I need to communicate to fully empower this individual’.
  3. Relational Communication – Building strong team rapport is essential to a great team.  Take time to connect, to gel, to build, to understand, to relate positively for the greater good of the team.

We all work in teams – whether our family ‘team’, in our workplace or at Church.  Even if you are a ‘sole-trader’ business you have a team – your clients, your accountant, your bank manager, suppliers and so on.

I’m believing with you today for the best.  See you in Church.



The Art of Confidence

[Click here for the audio version]

So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewardedYou need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promisedHebrews 10:35&36

Confidence has a rich reward. Confidence always pays off.  What we need more than more education and greater knowledge, is greater boldness and courage.

Last year I walk into my Dutch class, in a very small classroom, big enough for 8 students, 1 teacher, a communal table and a flip chart. I look around the room and it was full of women, including the teacher, I was ready to learn but this could have been intimidating!

Board rooms, can be intimidating.  Awkward phone calls we know we need to make, can be intimidating.  An over-emotional friend, spouse or colleague can be intimidating. 

Some people are intimidated by the gym. We think everyone who goes to the gym is more in shape than we are, forgetting that the reason they go to the gym is the same reason you want to go – to get in shape.

Introverts are intimidated by small talk. 

  • What do you find intimidating?

We intimidate when we call that which is difficult impossible, when we create a drama over a small thing.

Intimidation is fear of what others may do to us or think of us (physically, mentally or emotionally).  We can lose confidence in the face of intimidation or fear.

We can lack confidence in parenting, in the way we look, in a new job, or because of a condemning conscience.  You find it in your self talk, I’m not sure I could do that, I’m not sure they like me.

We have 2 raging forces at work in our lives – that of insecurity and that of confidence.

All the time that intimidation or fear rather than confidence is around you’re not living the life you could live.  Your not going for the job, or going back to school, or taking up the lead of a connect group – we miss opportunities. It paralyses.

So let’s go to work on finding our confidence; overcoming fear and intimidation; using the famous duel between David and Goliath.

The story takes place in the Shefela, a series of valleys and ridges running east-west in Israel, connecting the coastal Philistine plains to the mountains occupied by Israel. The Shefela would be used by hostile armies to get up into the mountains to attack.

On this occasion the Philistine and the Israelite armies are in a lock out as they are either side of a valley, neither daring to be the first to be vulnerable by entering the valley.  They solve it with a one to one combat.

The Philistines send down Goliath, a giant of a man, a soldier of the heavy infantry. Well armoured, armed with sword and spear and trained in hand to hand combat.  To add to that intimidation, he had a loud mouth which he certainly used to add an extra dose of fear.

David had the enemy trying to intimidate, his brothers trying to intimidate him and also the king.  Yet he ran at Goliath, determined to cut the head of that intimidation!

We learn 3 things from this story that help us understand how we can grow in confidence.

In any army there are 3 units:
The cavalry – those on horseback
Heavy Infantry – heavily armoured foot soldiers 
Slingers  experts in long distance fighting.  They could turn a sling 6x/second, sling a rock at 150km/hour, creating the stopping power of a 45mm handgun.  Their accuracy?  They could shoot a bird in flight, hitting a target from 150 metres. To top it all in the Valley of Elah where the duel took place the rocks were made of barium sulphate (twice the density of normal rock).

Goliath, an expert in hand to hand combat, shouts “Come here to me.”  David, an expert in long distance combat had no plan to fight with the means that his enemy was dictating.


Goliath was up against a man who really had the upper hand.  Yet he intimidated with his shouts, his taunts and his physical presence.  Your intimidator is never what it seems.

Know what your enemy is really like.

For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7

‘Timidity’ meaning ‘being intimidated’. When intimidated we lose love, sound mind, and power.

By nature you are bold, but we let others bully us. But God comes to Timothy and says I did not give you that spirit of fear.  “For God has not given…”

Intimidation will make itself out to be right, seems correct, they’re bigger, more experienced, shout louder, their emotions are frantic, that guilt seems from God. 

Your enemy, intimidation, is a liar.  It makes out something is more than it is. It exaggerates the truth.  Goliath is a giant. But only knows one way to fight!

They will hate me, & that would be absolutely terrible, I couldn’t bare that pain. No not true, yes they may hate you (they may not!), but you are able to bare the pain.

* Someone or something cannot intimidate you unless you give it permission.


Know who you really are.

But now, O Jacob, listen to the lord who created you. O Israel, the one who formed you says, “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine.” Isaiah 43:1 

David in Psalm 139 describes how wonderfully we have been made, well planned, not an accident, designed for a purpose. His thoughts about you are incredible. You are uniquely awesome.

David at first glance appears to be the underdog, but from another angle was actually the victor.  From what angle are you looking from?  Are you looking at what you have or what the enemy has?

Have a root of hope in you – hope overcomes all things – it sees above all challenges.  You have a golden edge – you are unique.

However, knowing who you are is not enough on its own.  Others in the Israelite army were also slingers and could do what David did, but they did not.  In our self-confidence we can still be intimidated.

So what was David’s ultimate edge?


Know who God really is.

Forget about self-confidence; it’s useless. Cultivate God-confidence. 1 Corinthians 10:12 Message

Paul said he put no confidence in his flesh.  God confidence is the only real confidence, self confidence is empty.

David worshipped in the hills, He trusted God regularly with his life, with his emotions (being the outsider in the family) – He knew God.

“A man who is intimate with God is not intimidated by man.” Leonard Ravenhill

One day Peter & John were intimidated & threatened by the local courts and told to stop preaching Jesus.  The disciples prayed and were filled with boldness as the Holy Spirit filled the place. It is the boldness and confidence from God we need!

Because of Christ and our faith in him, we can now come boldly and confidently into God’s presence. Ephesians 3:12

Our confidence is not in our performance.  Get with God, know His presence, there is no fear there, only courage. Come boldly.


I always feel I am not good enough to do what the church needs, or what my family need, or what Lizby needs – I regular feel inadequate, BUT for one thing, I have a God-confidence and out of that I live and work.

How about you today?  Intimidation or confidence.  Your choice!

Is there a better way to manage my time?

Last time we spoke about value led leadership. We looked at how knowing our values helps us determine our priorities and make decisions.  It helps us decide to do the right things not just the urgent things.

It also helps us know how to prioritise our time.

In leadership deciding what we must not do is as important as deciding what we should do.  We need to have a ‘to don’t list’ as well as a ‘to do list’.

What does your ‘to don’t list’ have on it?

– things that are not building the core purpose of your team or connect group
– things that someone else could be doing and find engaging

1. Ask yourself what things can I stop doing today?
2. What things could someone else be doing instead?

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