There’s nothing worse than the fear of the word “yes.” Often times people psych themselves out of the opportunity to shine. It’s an issue that spans across all age groups. From the first grader fearful of volunteering to read aloud to the corporate worker afraid to head an exciting new project, this crippling fear of “yes” is caused from second guessing. We second guess the validity of what we plan to add or whether we are qualified to do and answer something.

Studies have shown there is a confidence gap between the genders. Women being the more humble of the sexes as it pertains to their abilities, often underestimate their skills, while men tend to overestimate their abilities. It’s time to step up and claim the career you desire.

Prepare yourself
The goal to getting ahead is staying a step in front of everyone, including your superior. Know how and why everything works. Knowing your information will give you the confidence boost to speak up in the next meeting.

Work your discomfort
If you’re uncomfortable, then you’re doing something right. Life is about taking risks and discomfort makes accomplishing a challenge much more rewarding. It’s important to remember that to reach a place you’ve never been, you’ll have to do some things you’ve never done.

Figure it out
You won’t always know everything and that creates the perfect learning opportunity. Know that you will eventually figure out how to solve problems and fill in blanks. Comedian Tina Fey’s advice is say “yes,” and you’ll figure it out later.

Let no one take your spot
While you might not feel like an expert, never allow someone who “overestimates” to cause you to miss your opportunity. At that moment, ask yourself if you will be comfortable with someone with less skill than you taking your spot. If the answer is no, then it’s time to step out of self doubt.

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