What exactly does having confidence mean?
Does it mean thinking highly of yourself all the time? Maybe it means entering into a meeting and knowing you’ll blow everyone away. Or it could mean believing you can do something, when you’re not entirely sure. Whatever confidence means to you, congratulations - you already have it.
As children, we were born with an unspoken and always present self assurance. No one told us that we could climb to the top of the rock pile, we just assumed we could. And when we fell off, which we almost always did, we just climbed back on. No dramas. We didn’t know what “I can’t do it” was. We did, however, know what “I did it!” was.
Somehow, somewhere down the line, we lost that silent confidence. We observed the adults around us who also lost their silent confidence and we began believing that’s how we were meant to act. We took on their fear as they warned us that climbing to the top of the rock piles is dangerous. We took on their apprehension when they weren’t completely sure about something. Most importantly, we took on their self doubt when they felt they weren’t good enough.
So the question is: how do you return to that childlike state?
You can start by being true to yourself. Live your life doing what feels right to you, not what someone else thinks you should do. It’s okay to ask for advice, but in the end, make your choices based on what feels best for you. Being a people pleaser is a very frustrating way to live, but getting in the habit of pleasing yourself is pivotal. You are in charge of your own happiness.
After you start being true to yourself and what you want, expect success. It’s probably strange to say expect success since you can’t exactly predict the future, but don’t we do the alternative all the time? Have you ever gone into a stressful situation assuming the worst or that something would go wrong? By finding the successes in every situation and working towards them, you’ll notice over time that they increase and that it becomes easier.
Once you start expecting success and living true to yourself, it’s time for the most important step of all. You need to embrace the unknown. Many times, people are afraid of doing something because they don’t know how it will turn out. In reality, that’s half the fun. Haven’t there been other times where you’ve done something just because you’ve never done it before and it turned out amazingly? Perhaps trying out a new recipe in a cookbook, wearing an article of clothing you’ve never dreamed of wearing, asking out the person of your dreams or finally starting that business you’ve always wanted to start is the perfect place to begin. You’ll never know what could actually happen unless you give it a go.
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