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Belief: If You Don’t, Who Will?

Andrew 'Bernie' Bernard

Professional Speaker, MC, Educational Workshop Deliverer and Developer

This is how it goes...

"Well, I guess I could do this.  Yeah, I reckon I could!  Yep.  No problem. Going for it.  Got my  plan.  Bought the website name.  Planned the content. 

Yep:  even started to think about the things I might do to attract business…. most likely.  Is it quite ready though? 

When I Googled businesses who start and fail in the first year I thought, …well mine won’t be one of those.  Will it"

There it is.    

Can you smell it? That subtle scent of doubt creeping in, soon to become the unmistakable whiff of  “Not quite ready yet.”  

The gnawing pang of self-doubt followed by the shadow of the silent self-saboteur who creeps up on you and places a “STOP” sign right in front of your  plans, your ideas and your life.
I am reminded of something Richard G Scott once said:

Think of the long view of life, not just what’s going to happen today or tomorrow.  Don’t give up what you most want in life for something you think you want now.

The second letter in the ABCD of Success is B for BELIEF.
After tackling your attitude, self-belief is the bridge between thinking you are ready to do something and actually doing it.

The funny thing is, like so many of our feelings and motivations, we need to be aware of how one thing can affect another.
Belief can be nebulous, hard to grasp, and elusive. We look for evidence to back up our beliefs – whether they are religious, political, scientific.  We look for reasons to believe OR we state the absence of proof.
This complex relationship is explored in Matthew Syed’s book: Black Box Thinking where he explains the way cultures in industry and the professions often deal with failure, and how the people within those industries adapt to criticism of their systems.
Failures in systems are caused by a variety of things – methods, equipment, tampering, people, ignorance, malice and mistakes.    

Black Box Thinking shows how  airlines investigate EVERY crash to ascertain the reason for the event, and look at systems to avoid future errors.

By contrast, the medical profession (in certain countries) clings to the idea of the 'educated expert'.   For instance surgeons because the culture holds them in high-regard, the profession does no often investigate failure  ‘because there was nothing more we could do’.
These aspects of process, method and behaviour are driven to an extent by belief:

  • Airlines believe they can learn something from every event
  • Surgeons can believe they have nothing to learn, or
  • Surgeons do not want their belief in themselves shaken by discovering they could have saved lives.

So, if belief is sometimes hard to back up in the world of business, religion, science and politics (leaving aside all the variants possible in terms of data, research and let’s call it fact-presentation differences) imagine how hard it is to believe in something that isn’t in existence yet: something that is only in your head or maybe written down that you’ve had some good feedback about from close friends.
Without belief, you cannot cross the bridge to action.  

YOU need to believe in your ideas, your plans and your dreams for whatever it is you want to do – especially if it is something new and unique.  Why?  

There will be people who won’t get it, who will avoid talking about your ‘idea’ and some who will actively try to put you down or stop it happening.  (Needless to say they are not the people you need!) 

Belief comes from that solid feeling that you are doing the right thing at the right time in the right way.  

Your certainty starts from a positive attitude and your belief emerges with the next step you take: being brave enough to share your proposal with colleagues, peers and friends who will challenge you positively and try to get you to uncover the difficulties and realities and help you to overcome them.
As Mark Victor Hansen says:

Your belief determines your action and your action determines your results. But first you have to believe.

Sounds simple doesn’t it? “Just believe in yourself a bit more!”   It is hard to do but with the appropriate and challenging support around you and that famed can-do attitude you can get  that “Stop” sign and all those strange smells, removed.  
You WILL get it done.


Andrew 'Bernie' Bernard

Professional Speaker, MC, Educational Workshop Deliverer and Developer

Bernie, or Andrew Bernard to his mum, was an underachiever at school, he left with an E and a U at A level from a Grammar school and this changed his life…he decided to make a change and went away to college in North Wales. After a successful three years and a Distinction in HND in Business and Finance he went on to work at Management levels in Unilever.

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