What Confidence Looks Like
Some of the most successful people in the world exude an almost surreal air of confidence. Think of Steve Jobs wearing the same pair of jeans and black turtleneck every day while ruling a technological empire. Similarly, Mark Hamill’s conviction as he addresses thousands of fans with humorous anecdotes, barely blinking at unexpected interruptions. How do these people do it?
Many people believe confidence is the cornerstone of success. in fact, confidence is “the degree to which you think and feel your actions will achieve positive results”.
It is clear that confidence is something innate. Something that literally has power over the outcome of situations through sheer positivity and self-assurance. This premonition of your own success seems to have amazing power in the lives of those who exercise confidence. Furthermore, it almost guarantees a positive outcome. Because of this, confidence is a highly sought-after commodity.
Is Confidence Nature or Nurture?
Well, it’s actually a little bit of both. Confidence is something you had naturally but lost at some point in your life. When you were six, you knew you could be anything you wanted to be. Maybe it was a policeman or an Olympic medal-winning swimmer. It didn’t matter that you could be killed any minute of the day or that you couldn’t swim. Your confidence was strong enough for you to believe you could do it. Only after you were socialized and warned about potential pitfalls did you stop to think about the negatives. We should then be able to train ourselves to be confident again, but how?
Back to Reality…
First of all, it is important to appraise your skills realistically. Many parents have raised their children by praising them for everything they do with the intention of building confidence. In reality, though, this gave children a hollow idea of their actual skills, leading to the child being disappointed in the end when they could not achieve a goal.
In contrast, other parents may have been overly critical of their child’s performance, thereby diminishing the child’s sense of self-worth in achieving a goal. Both of these extremes will lead to a skewed understanding of one’s skills. However, by knowing what you are truly good at, you can work from there. Otherwise, the alternative is trying to catch up with a false perception of your skills.
In a Positive Way
Additionally, you need to see yourself and what you do in a positive light. Visualize yourself at the end of the line as the success that you will be. View all criticism as constructive and use it to improve your skills, which will only make your success more achievable.
Take note of your successes and use them to empower you as you move through your trials and failures. If you celebrate the small successes, you’re building up the expectation that you deserve the big success, aiding in your optimism and building your confidence.
Exude Confidence, Not Arrogance
Many times we are told that showing courage in an idea or in our skills is arrogant. But, putting ourselves out there is exactly what we require to build our confidence. This is particularly true when we know that we have a great idea or are excellent at a skill but are too concerned we may come off negatively if we say something. That thought process is a confidence killer. We can also fake confidence a little by having an easy smile, dressing the part, remembering our posture, and shaking offered hands firmly.
Finally, the most important aspect of confidence is trusting yourself. This world of science and technological advancement emphasizes logic over emotion, but intuition is actually very important for self-confidence. We have trained ourselves to ignore our intuition and instead work on a basis of pros and cons. In contrast, the most successful people have relied much on their instinct when it came to making business decisions. Retraining ourselves to trust our intuition is a difficult task, requiring a serious commitment to meditation and self-observation.
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