What I’ve learned about confidence

Am I a confident person? Yes and no. Things come along to tell me that yeah, actually, you are confident. But in the day-to-day, it doesn’t really feel that way. And maybe that’s just it. Confidence isn’t some huge amazing thing that you either have or you don’t. It ebbs and flows. There are moments when you’re sure and moments when you’re not.

First lesson: confidence is a spectrum. It’s comes and goes. It strengthens and weakens.

There are people I feel confident around and people I don’t. There are experiences I feel confident having and ones I don’t. Doing new things requires more energy and questions that come along to shake my confidence (either a little or a lot). But confidence is built through doing things. Competency and courage lead to confidence. By doing things you don’t know how to do, or that you’re scared to do, you gain confidence in those areas of life.

Lesson two: feel the fear and do it anyway.

Confidence isn’t, in my experience, being independent and strong and never feeling weak. Confidence is weakness and the courage to be vulnerable. Confidence isn’t walking into a room, knowing you’re better than everyone else; it’s walking into a room and not caring either way. It’s holding your head high because you know, like, and trust yourself.

Lesson three: confidence is knowing who you are on a deep level and being that person.

Through experiences of all kinds, you grow as a person. You learn who you are and what you like and what you’re good at. You learn what’s for you and what’s not. You come to accept the lessons of life through living it, even if you fall on your ass along your journey (because we all do).

Lesson four: confidence is about growth and learning; being a student of life with your head held high.

And as I said, you don’t do it alone. We grow as people by getting help from others. We share ideas. We help one another out. We need mentors and advice to learn new ways of thinking and doing things. We get to choose what we listen to and take on board, but blocking out everyone else doesn’t help us grow.

We need to have values, beliefs, and opinions forged through experiences and conversations. Fixed mindsets do not a confident person make. It makes you stubborn and rigid. Confident people know when they have a lesson to learn, are open-minded, and are flexible.

Lesson five: confidence means knowing when to sit and listen to learn, and when to speak up for your beliefs and share.

While you’re learning from others, don’t forget to uplift them. Celebrate their wins and their efforts. Be confident enough not to be shaken by someone else living their best life. Life is abundant and we don’t need to compete. Just because someone has a hot husband and a great job, doesn’t mean you can’t have that too. Being jealous and angry and talking shit about them won’t make your life any better. It won’t make you confident, it just makes you look like a jackass.

Lesson six: confident people don’t need to compete in desperation and envy.

I feel more confident when I make an effort. When I don’t just half-arse my outfit or my hair. Instead, I walk taller and have a pep in my step when I know I look good. It’s not superficial or pointless. It’s a way of expressing yourself or smiling with your outfit!

And of course, being healthy goes a long way to confidence. Being healthy in mind, body, and spirit. That’s not to say that you can’t feel confident while working on your body or tackling some heavy mental and spiritual hurdles. It’s about feeling like you’re making healthy choices in the long run for your betterment each day. Even if that growth is minuscule and other people don’t notice it. Who cares about them? It’s not their journey of wellness. It’s yours.

Lesson seven: choosing healthier things for yourself means you’re confidently taking steps towards a better you.

Lastly, confidence means feeling a stronger inner power and guidance system. It’s not magic. It’s not about being the best person in the world. It’s not about being the prettiest, smartest, funniest, richest, most talented person you know. Instead, it’s having a connection to and awareness of your own inner power and intuition.

So if you want one thing to take away, just remember this. Confidence is a connection to yourself. That’s all. A healthy connection. A strong connection. It means even if you make mistakes, you love yourself still and treat yourself with compassion. You treat yourself like your best friend.

Lesson eight: confidence is treating yourself with love and kindness and doing what is true to you.

(I like lists of 10 so here are some snappy bonus last lessons!)

Lesson nine: confidence comes from action, you don’t wait for confidence before taking action.

Lesson ten: confidence doesn’t mean being 100% sure, sometimes it’s a trusting leap of faith.

(A few years ago, I completed the Confidence Challenge; check it out for yourself if you’re interested in building confidence)


S. xx

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