How to Build Self-confidence and Break Through the Glass Ceiling

Study after study has shown that when it comes to confidence and self-esteem, women fall behind men, with four in five women1 having issues with their confidence. Once women enter the workplace their confidence levels reduce even further, with only 13%1 believing that they will advance to senior management.

“To achieve true gender equality, more women need to develop the confidence and self-esteem that will empower them to live a fulfilled life of their choosing,” says Fiori Giovanni, a sought-after keynote speaker, author and executive coach, and a successful business woman in her own right.

“There is no question that this lack of confidence is contributing to women being unable to break through the glass ceiling, with the majority of senior corporate positions still being held by men. This, in turn, creates an environment that is not conducive to women’s confidence levels.”

Giovanni believes that it is crucial to empower young women at early stages of life as they are the future and will drive change within the business world as they pave the way for generations to follow.

Giovanni has developed a five-step program women can use to help grow their confidence and boost their self-belief.

Step 1: Empower yourself through knowledge

Knowledge is a power that can change your life. Knowledge is the best feel-good medicine you could ever want, and through it you can find purpose and fulfilment. Develop your natural curiosity and the passion to learn and know, and you’ll find that you’re on equal footing with colleagues and possess all the tools you need to accelerate your career and build your legacy.

Step 2: Make positive affirmations a part of your life

Identify the negative self-talk and behaviour patterns that no longer serve you, and release yourself from them. Replace your old habits with new positive self-talk that will uplift you and those around you. Making daily positive affirmations will help you to take conscious control of your thoughts.

Step 3: Visualise the person you want to be

Having a Life Vision is a great tool that encourages your authentic self, connects you to your life purpose and helps you find meaning in life. Nothing has meaning except the meaning we give it, so by keeping the ideal picture of your authentic self in mind, you are able to keep yourself motivated and avoid getting stuck in a rut. So activate your imagination and embrace what is possible.

Step 4: Set goals

Smart goal setting gives you a roadmap and timeline to success. Your goals should express your long-term vision for your life, while providing short-term motivation for each step in your journey. Focus your new knowledge and resources on achieving the next goal in your plan, and you’ll reach your ultimate destination must faster than if you take an unstructured approach.

Step 5: Take action

A goal without action is just a wish. To make your wishes come true, it’s important to take specific, conscious actions that are focused on achieving each goal in your plan. With a list of short- and long-term goals in place, the action you need to take to achieve each will now be much clearer.

“Once you complete these five steps, you will be equipped with all the self confidence you need to live a life that’s true to your authentic self,” says Giovanni. “You’ll also find that you’ll have an uplifting natural effect on those around you as you inspire others with a confident, powerful and self-actualised approach to your life and work.”

Visit to buy Fiori’s book, Defy Your Destiny, or go to to learn more about the power of positive affirmations.

Fiori Giovanni is a keynote speaker, author and executive coach. She helps her clients take back control of their lives, to initiate positive change, and build capability, clarity and focus.

Fiori was born in Eritrea. She escaped an arranged childhood marriage at just 12 years old. At 15, she fled the Eritrean army and made a harrowing Mediterranean crossing alone.

After seeking asylum in Belgium, her journey led to Australia where she has built several businesses, a successful career as an executive coach, authored of over 30 self-help books, and continues to dedicate herself to helping others overcome their challenges in order to live a life of their choosing through her keynote speaking.

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