Confidence isn’t something we’re born with, it’s something that needs to be cultivated.
For most of my life I have only known two kinds of confidence: over-confidence and no confidence. I’d like to say that I am a confident person but I never had a sense of what confidence truly looked like. I grew up believing that confidence was something that you had when you did things right.
Unfortunately, that did not make sense to me. As I grew up I started to understand that confidence came with some type of plan and action. It wasn’t about the loudest person or the toughest person. A confident person would do what they felt was necessary to get something done and it usually included some fear. I figured, maybe it was two sides of the same coin, and it is.
Confidence comes from inside each one of us and it involve thought and action. It comes from belief in ourselves based on what we do in life.
I have spent most of my life trying to develop my sense of self confidence and it has been with me all along. It’s similar to what Glinda the Good Witch tells Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz that she always had the power but needed to learn that she had it. Yeah, I was never fond of that part of the movie, but it does relate to confidence. We need to take action to understand what we can do in life and, in doing this, we gain confidence in our abilities and actions. We learn that fear is the back side of confidence. It’s like flipping a coin. Heads or tails. You can’t really have one without the other.
When we push forward and do things that scare us, it is the fear that makes itself known. When a child manages to get their balance on a bike or a skateboard we cheer for them because they are taking a chance and doing it while the child usually is very vocal about their fear. In the end, we focus on all the positives of the experience to help them grow.
So why is it so difficult to do this with ourselves? The concepts of things like belief, strength of character, and confidence are also attached to failure, pain, and embarrassment. I have spent a long time focusing on the negative side in my life, and it hasn’t helped me to get better unless it is connected to overcoming perceived failures and motivating myself to be successful. Look at both sides of the coin and decide what you want to do? Heads or tails? Going forward or looking back?
Pick your path. It is the only way to get moving. Here are four steps to start building confidence in you!
1. Show up for yourself. Whether it is work, starting a business, exercise, meditation, doing a new routine — just show up and do it. It is a victory for you!
2. Invest in yourself. Make time for the things that you want to do on a regular basis including downtime afterwards. It will allow you the time and space to make it a habit. You are important and need this time!
3. Don’t get lost in your head. It is easy to make comparisons with people that are already down the road of exercise, finding a different job, looking for love, etc. Your path can only be lived by you! Cherish it!
4. Your best self has to include believing in yourself! We give so much attention to our negative thoughts that many times these are the only things we hear. In this case, listen to the voice that wants to get better. You can be your most dynamic self just by allowing yourself to grow no matter how difficult it might seem. To quote Lao Tzu, “Every journey (or JRNI) begins with a single step.” Take the first step! You will be glad you did!
To navigate your own self-confidence journey with Carlos, book a session with him here.
Are you interested in learning more about how you can cultivate the different thoughts, feelings, and experiences you want more of? We have a whole class dedicated to positive psychology in our Catalyst Coaching Intensive. Learn more here.JRNI
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Published in March 2018 for JRNI on Medium