All entrepreneurs share a common vision. Although every entrepreneur is a unique individual with unique talents and aspirations, there’s one vision that all entrepreneurs share: the common wish to feel totally confident about themselves–and have this feeling last for their entire lives.

Why does confidence matter?

Confidence is the electricity of life.

A modern home outfitted with every gadget and convenience will only work with a supply of electricity to power these amenities; similarly, your abilities only come alive when you have confidence.

Making decisions about the future of your organization, generating new business, creating new products, services, or processes–all these entrepreneurial activities rely on confidence for their foundation. Only those who have it can derive satisfaction, meaning, and purpose from their successes, and are able to transform their failures into lessons for future improvements.

What Is Confidence?

But what is this thing called “confidence?” Here’s how I define it:

Confidence is the ability to transform fear into focused and relaxed thinking, communication, and action–with the result that dangers become opportunities, obstacles become innovations, weaknesses become advantages, and setbacks become breakthroughs.

This is clearly an extraordinary ability, more important than any other. Having confidence makes almost everything else possible, doesn’t it? Entrepreneurs who have this central ability as a constant daily resource can learn anything, respond to anything, adjust to anything, and achieve anything.

Putting the most important goal first

Very few entrepreneurs make a central, daily goal of increasing their confidence. In fact, many put down everything but increased confidence on their list of daily objectives. By not making confidence itself a goal, these entrepreneurs leave their confidence level largely up to chance and circumstance.

When you focus on constantly protecting and increasing your confidence, you’ll find that everything else becomes easier because you’ve made the foundation for all your other successes more solid and predictable.

How to Plan for Confidence

Here’s one strategy for making confidence a regular part of your day: Instead of planning your days to achieve anything in particular, organize each day around the central activity of increasing your confidence.

This can be done simply by asking yourself this question at the end of each day: “What do I need to do tomorrow to make my confidence even greater than it is right now?” Once you come up with the answers to this question, construct your next day’s schedule of activities. Every night the question is always the same, but the answers continually change. Every day, you can go through all of your activities with the awareness that you’re doing everything for the purpose of increasing your confidence.

By having this constant intention and focus, you can achieve an enormous amount. But achieving a great deal is not the objective; rather, increasing your confidence is the objective. The achievements are simply strategic byproducts of having a high level of confidence that’s always increasing.

Making Confidence a Habit

Using index cards, try this exercise over the next seven days: Write the question, “What do I need to do tomorrow to make my confidence even greater than it is right now?” at the top of the card, then write all your answers underneath. Use the card to guide your daily actions, one card for each day. After a week, your confidence will be much higher, and you’ll be amazed by how much you’ve achieved.