Confidence is embedded in our perception of ourselves and our ability to do something. Confidence is a feeling, a state of mind. Most people struggle with a lack of confidence to some degree or another, often feeling that their lives are not nearly what they could be. Confidence can affect many areas of life from work to relationships. A lack of confidence is not inherited. It is a consequence of past experiences that have left us with feelings of inadequacy, self doubt, and insecurity. It is also not necessarily related to lack of ability. Often it is the result of focusing too much on the unrealistic expectations or standards, imposed either by yourself or others. This is why improving confidence levels are a goal for so many people. With self confidence we extend our reach, we push ourselves outside the comfort zone accomplishing so much more than we thought possible—or than would be possible without it. True confidence comes from a quiet place, deep within; from a calm acceptance and understanding or our own abilities and our own unique value. Truly confident people not only behave and live confidently, they inspire confidence in others. Genuine confidence allows us – and others – to do our very best.
When we feel confident it means we are okay in our own skin. It’s a sense of self-assurance that accompanies us in every aspect of our lives.
Whilst self esteem and confidence are often used interchangeable, and are undoubtedly interconnected, self-confidence differs from self-esteem.
Self confidence has to do with how we feel about our abilities, and so can differ depending on the situation we are in. A person may be confident when doing their job, for example, but be completely unconfident when socialising or having to meet new people. With low self confidence we do not fully trust our ability to accomplish, we doubt our ability to perform well in various situations.
Our self-esteem is how we value and perceive ourselves. It is our internal opinion of who and how we are. When we lack self-esteem, we may feel:
- like you hate or dislike yourself
- worthless or not good enough
- unable to make decisions or assert yourself
- like no one likes you
- you blame yourself for things that aren’t your fault
- guilt for spending time or money on yourself
- unable to recognise your strengths
- undeserving of happiness
With low self esteem, our sense of security depends largely on other people. We are constantly seeking to be validated from without, so people and events beyond our control determine how we feel about who we are—and therefore about life in general.
Lack of confidence and low self-esteem have everything to do with conditioning and are rooted in the subconscious mind and how it has been ‘wired’.
Because of this, we need to turn to the subconscious for a solution.
And here is the most important thing: When we like and respect our-self, our self esteem automatically increases and improves, which makes us even more confident. When we are confident in important areas of our life then we begin to expand and increase our overall sense of self esteem.
Each one feeds and enhances the other. And both aspects can be worked on at the same time
- “You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection” – Buddha
- “Low self-esteem is like driving through life with your hand-break on.”– Maxwell Maltz