Here is how you become 1% better every day. Start with a personal problem or challenge

Andrea Zanon Confidente
4 min readOct 16

Having won and lost “many battles” over the last 25 years, both professionally and personally, I’d like to share some of the actions that helped me succeed and recover from setbacks. Just as a matter of background, throughout my career I have advised 15 Ministers of Finance in the Gulf Countries and the broader Middle East. I also advised Secretary of State Madeline Albright and coached more than 25,000 women entrepreneurs on fundraising. All this exposure came with lessons, pressure, and failures. Regardless of these, here below are several routines that helped me stay competitive and bounce back quickly when life “punched me in the face”.

Share your vulnerability with people you respect: The power of vulnerability is under-appreciated. When you are open about your losses, sadness, depression, and failures you are taking powerful steps towards success and self-affirmation. Leaders, take responsibility and talk about failures out loud. Open-up with people you trust and share your vulnerability and challenges. You may not know you need help so do it as frequently as possible. This creates trust building, partnership, and problem-solving opportunities. The person you open up to, will reciprocate and share similar lessons and experiences. Being comfortable about your weakness makes you stronger and helps you build the pain tolerance that ultimately makes you unbreakable.

Seek inspirations from your favorite leaders: Watch videos and read books about leaders that overcome failures and tough decision-making situations. This can be in sports, in business, in the military and in life. It does not matter. Apply these lessons and best practices to your daily decision making. If it is team performance you are after, I recommend watching Al-Pacino inspirational Every Given Sunday team’s talk during the darkest time of a football match. The video starts with… “we are in hell right now. In terms of books, my favorite action-oriented piece is “The Obstacle is the Way” by philosopher Ryan Holiday. I read this multiple times and learned that within every obstacle is an opportunity to improve our condition and that sometimes we make the wrong choices to get to the right place. Read the book and think about progress not perfection.

Andrea Zanon Confidente

I have advised 25k entrepreneurs, 15 minister of finance and Secretary of State Madeline Albright