Confidence: Who.. What.. Where Are You?
Last week I found myself completely immersed in an interesting conversation over coffee (of course) with a young woman from Russia; we had met completely by chance, and under such circumstances that would force you to stop and appreciate the magic of the universe.
I was reading a book at the time entitled, “Who Says You Can’t? You Do”, and had just finished a chapter which discussed visualisation, and the process of attracting more of what you want into your life. While on the metro home that night, I spent the whole journey in another world; in a deep meditative state, smiling from ear to ear while envisioning the path I was on and the direction in which I was headed. I probably looked like a right weirdo, but anyway. An area in which I have been always interested in- and was exploring in that very instant on the metro- is Life and Career Coaching.
As I stepped out of the exit at Xintiandi station, and entered our apartment complex, I bumped into Mila. We were both taken aback, largely due to the fact that we were both non-natives, and living in the same complex unbeknownst to ourselves. After a brief introduction, I soon found out what she did for a living, and it completely floored me. Of course, she was a Career Coach.
Fast forward a couple of days, we found ourselves chatting over coffee, and one topic in particular stuck with me for days afterwards. So much so, that I figured I’d delve a little deeper, and put pen to paper in the process.
What is confidence, where does it come from, and most importantly, how can we build it.
It’s difficult to give a straight answer, I think. We are all unique, and will have different ideas on the subject based on our own life experiences. For me, confidence comes from within first and foremost.
For the purposes, I’ll go back in time briefly. I never saw myself as having a great deal of self-confidence growing up, and I think it was largely due to uncertainty. I was a bit unsure of myself, of what I wanted to do in ‘the future’, and where I was headed. I imagine it’s something that’s quite common amongst young people- perhaps.
At the time of writing, if I was to look within and try to evaluate my confidence levels, I would say that I am much more comfortable in my own skin, much more self-assured, and on the whole, a confident person. Thankfully.
That begs the question then, how has that awkward, uncertain young buck, developed into the person sitting here today, and what exactly has happened in between. Well, a lot has happened as it turns out, and much has changed. Don’t worry, I’ll spare you the gory details, but here are some thoughts based on my own experiences, as to how we can build and nurture confidence.
I think we gain confidence from making mistakes, and learning from them. Fuck up, a lot. I know I have. We are not defined by the person we were yesterday, but we can learn a hell of a lot from them.
Roll The Dice
There is a great deal of confidence to be gained from taking chances. Rather than jumping into something completely blindfolded however, consider if it is something you want for yourself. Listen to your intuition; your inner compass will never lead you astray. Embrace the fear, and take the leap.
Reinforce The Positives
Always look to seek out the positives in any given situation, and reinforce them. If something makes you feel good, do more of it.
Progress of any nature should be celebrated. Recognise when you have done good, give yourself a pat on the back, and then refocus your energy on reaching your next target.
Confidence comes with the knowing that you are doing something meaningful, treading your path passionately, in a direction that is in line with your desires.
Purpose is the reason you journey. Passion is the fire that lights the way.
In order to be certain that we are headed in the right direction, we need to have our hands on the wheel. Take confidence in the knowing that you are in control of your life, and nobody else.
Create Nourishing Environments
That old chestnut- you are a product of your environment. Immerse yourself in positive and nourishing environments in all aspects of your daily life, and surround yourself with people who bring out the very best in you. Soak it up.
You may notice that these are all closely related, and do indeed go hand in hand. Like I mentioned at the beginning of the post, we are all unique and we will have our own thoughts and ideas about where confidence stems from. For me, it starts from within.