This section is all about emotions and learning about our mental health. Kimberly Elmore, an Identity Staff Writer, has dedicated her time to educate and discuss a particular emotion in each issue. It’s a great way for women to open up and become more aware of our emotions, feelings, and human behavior. All of these emotions help us understand how to Accept. Appreciate. Achieve.TM and to Feel Beautiful Everyday!TM
“I have confidence in sunshine, I have confidence in rain. I have confidence that spring will come again! Besides, which you see I have confidence in me.” For those of us who are Sound of Music fans, that is honestly what pops into my head when I think of the word, ‘confidence.’ These are lyrics from the catchy, “I Have Confidence in Me” song that Julie Andrews sang as she skipped down the road to the Vonn Trap family’s home for the first time.
As I attempt to write this June Emotion Commotion article on confidence, I’m getting stuck. Stuck with that song in my head, and stuck with what words to type about the word confidence! How do I begin to write about this powerful word that emits various emotions?
Confidence. The first word that comes to mind when I hear that word is security. Someone who has confidence is secure in who they are – emotionally, spiritually, and physically.
Dictionary.com defines confidence as: belief in oneself and one’s powers or abilities; self-reliance; assurance; full trust; belief in the powers, trustworthiness, or reliability of a person or thing.
How does confidence relate to emotions? Well, negative, limiting emotions affect our confidence levels. Feelings such as fear, anger, and being overwhelmed can make our confidence level take a nose dive, whereas, love, courage, and enthusiasm feelings can make our confidence level soar!
Identity’s Accept. Appreciate.Achieve.TM message is about confidence, if you think about it. Acceptance of ourselves and the things we cannot change, appreciation for what we offer the world and what the world has to offer, and striving to achieve on deeper levels all can positively impact our confidence.
I don’t know about you, but confidence is something I’ve struggled with my entire life. As a child, I was labeled “shy,” and as I went through my teens and young adulthood, I would sometimes get teased for being “too quiet.” At times, my quietness was mistaken for rudeness. Reality is I would clam up, especially when I was in a new situation meeting new people – I wouldn’t feel confident. As I got older, my confidence level has improved. I feel that I’m highly confident at work, but in my personal life, I still struggle with feeling confident when it comes to certain friendships and dating, as well as new experiences.
I also think confidence has a lot to do with self esteem and self worth. I tend to be skeptical of people who come across as overly confident. I think some of those people may be “fake it, til you make it” type people. There’s something unauthentic about over confidence. Also, sometimes people who exude over confidence are some of the most insecure people. And then, there are people like me. I have a decent sense of self worth (being a contributor and reader of Identity has certainly helped me in this area) and my self esteem has certainly improved as I’ve gotten older and had more life experiences — but — confidence is still a little foreign to me! So, how does one strike a balance and build true confidence?
I recently read an article about building self confidence on pickthebrain.com, and it said: “Self confidence is the difference between feeling unstoppable and feeling scared out of your wits. Your perception of yourself has an enormous impact on how others perceive you. Perception is reality – the more self confidence you have, the more likely it is you’ll succeed.”
Perception. So, confidence really boils down to how you perceive yourself? I hadn’t really thought of that before, but it makes sense. If you perceive yourself as insecure, you’ll most likely be insecure and others will think you’re insecure. If you perceive yourself as worthy, you’ll feel worthy and others will view you as worthy. If you perceive yourself as successful, you’ll become successful. If you perceive yourself as confident, you’ll build confidence and others will think you are confident.
It supports the psychology thought of: “Watch your thoughts, for they become words. Watch your words, for they become actions. Watch your actions, for they become habits. Watch your habits, for they become character. Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.” Confidence can become a part of your destiny — it all starts with your thoughts and your perception of yourself.
In addition to changing your mindset, there are other tactics you can try to help build your self esteem. Identity’s mantra is a great place to start. Accept your flaws, as well as realize that nobody is perfect. Talk to a trusted friend about your insecure feelings — in sharing with others, you’ll learn you are not alone. Appreciate yourself, your body, your imperfections, and what you can contribute to this world. When you give to others, you really are giving a gift to yourself — the gift that you are worthy and have much to offer. Strive to achieve, learn, and grow each day. Set a realistic goal for yourself and work hard at achieving it.
As someone who started out stuck on what to write, I’ve certainly come up with quite a bit to say! My initial approach to this article was to do research. To figure out what others were saying about confidence, find a top 10 list of things to do to build confidence. I wasn’t confident that I could write about confidence! But, then I realized the answer was much closer than I thought. Identity offers so much when it comes to confidence and self esteem. Its mission is based around helping women realize their true potential and self worth by sharing stories in a safe place that allows each of us to learn from one another and discover our true identity.
An identity with a strong sense of self and genuine confidence! As a matter of fact, my confidence level has grown just from exploring the concept of confidence in order to write this article! So, Accept. Appreciate. Achieve.TM — watch and feel what that does to your confidence level!
“It is confidence in our bodies, minds, and spirits that allows us to keep looking for new adventures, new directions to grow in, and new lessons to learn – which is what life is all about.”–Oprah Winfrey