If you're like most people, you probably wish that you could feel more confident. But what if I told you that you may already be there? There are many misconceptions about confidence, and they can hold people back. You could wind up believing that you have some sort of confidence deficit when that's not the case at all.

In an insightful piece at Psychology Today, author and former counseling professor Meg Selig busts 10 myths about confidence that hold many people back. It's worth checking out the whole list, but here are five items that are particularly problematic for entrepreneurs, aspiring entrepreneurs, and business leaders. If you never tell yourself any of these things, you may be more confident than you realize. 

1. "If I were confident, I would never be nervous or afraid."

Brave people aren't fearless--they act in spite of their fear. And while a feeling of self-assurance is part of the definition of confidence, being confident doesn't mean you will never feel nervous or out of your depth. It does mean that you have a realistic appreciation of your own abilities and intelligence, and that you know these assets will help you when you tackle a daunting task or situation.

Besides, if you never felt nervous or afraid, that would probably mean that you weren't taking on new challenges. Growing your company or your career means stepping outside your comfort zone at least some of the time. If you were always comfortable, it might be because you were standing still.

2. "I'll be confident when I do everything right."

"Perfection is the enemy of progress," Winston Churchill once said. Truly confident people understand that they will make mistakes and do things wrong because everyone does that sometimes. 

Truly confident people don't expect themselves to be perfect, and they have enough faith in their own worth to own up to their mistakes and do what they can to fix them. Someone who never makes a mistake might be someone who always does the same thing in the same way over and over. If you make a mistake, it probably means you're trying something new--and that's a good thing.

3. "Self-criticism is helping me do better, which will eventually make me confident."

This is a very tempting mindset. If you're constantly criticizing and berating yourself, the logic goes, you'll always strive to work harder and make smarter decisions. Conversely, if you stop criticizing yourself, and even give yourself some praise once in a while, you're liable to turn lazy and stop putting forth your best effort. Worse, you might turn into a conceited narcissist.

That's pretty much the opposite of the truth, research shows. "If you want more confidence, drop the self-criticism and adopt a self-compassionate mindset," Selig writes. Research shows that self-compassion will help you take risks and reach for greater heights more than self-criticism will.

4. "I'll feel confident when I've earned it by achieving something great."

Beware of any thought pattern that makes your confidence contingent on some external circumstance, such as reaching a certain goal or having others recognize your achievement. For one thing, that might never happen, or at least not the way you want it to.

Truly confident people don't need that kind of validation to know just how good they are. Instead, Selig advises, try congratulating yourself for small achievements, which will build your confidence step by step.

5. "I need to feel more confident before I tackle big, important projects." 

That's putting things in the wrong order, Selig writes. Don't wait to feel confident to take on a project that's important to you. The feeling of confidence will come from beginning that project and grow when you start making progress. Then next time you face a new challenge, it will be easier to find your confidence because you'll have done it before.

There's a growing audience of Inc.com readers who receive a daily text from me with a self-care or motivational micro-challenge or idea. (Interested in joining? Here's more information and an invitation to an extended free trial.)

Many subscribers are entrepreneurs or business leaders, and often they text me back about their work, their lives, or their biggest ambitions. They tell me how important confidence is to everything they do, and that it doesn't come from being perfect or reaching big goals. It comes from simply from jumping in and doing the best work that you can do.