One of the most important things in self development is the building and maintaining of a good inner confidence.|
A good inner confidence is the cornerstone to self development. No matter which self development strategy you want to use, if you don't have a good inner confidence, they won't work. Real lasting self improvement must start with creating a strong abiding confidence from within. It's like the difference between building a house on the sand, where the wind and water can wash the foundation away, or on solid ground, where it is well-entrenched and unmoveable. To develop yourself into the person you were meant to be requires you to develop an unmoveable self confidence.
Find the real youIn order to develop a good inner confidence, we have to have a good idea what we're supposed to be confident in. The real you. Our thoughts, opinions and attitudes are determined by our values. They are who we are, and also direct us into who we want to become. Values are things that we believe in. Things that we hold dear. Things that we want to see in others and in the world around us. Things like freedom, respect, generosity, family, nature, or achievement.
The times that we are frustrated or upset with people or situations usually are generated by an absence of those values that make us who we are. We want to express and experience the values that we feel are important, and when they're absent, or they're taken from us, we're affected negatively. We get angry, or upset. Our frustrations cause us to become unmotivated. The other side of this observation is that when we are our happiest and most fulfilled is when we see our values being shared by others. People showing each other respect, or generosity. Care and concern. Whatever your values happen to be.
Knowing your values, and living your life according to them, allows you to make the correct and necessary choices toward achieving a fulfilling life. And when the internalized turmoil of frustration and lack of motivation is gone, you'll have a good look at who you really are. In turn, that will enable you to develop a confidence in yourself.
Trust your instinctsWe're always looking around us, trying to find some sign that we're doing okay. That we're doing the right thing. That we're heading in the right direction. Often, it comes in the form of a compliment -- a pat on the back at work, or praise or a statement of appreciation from a family member, friend or co-worker. Sometimes, we get it by using whatever metric is available. How much money we're making. How new is our car. How big is our house. How many toys -- things -- we own. How big our bank balance is.
But those metrics can't tell you the whole story. And while praise and congratulations from people often make us feel really wonderful, they too fall short in telling us all the facts. The only way to truly know if we're doing well in life, in the way we're living, is to look inwardly. The same thing applies with the choices we have to make. Make a point of looking inwardly. Trust your guts. One's intuition can often provide a more complete understanding of the situation and the consequences of the things we say and do. The drawback to trusting your instincts, however, is that if we choose wrong -- if we fail in some way -- the blame will be ours alone. And most people can't imagine taking the chance and risk damaging their self-image.
Truth be told, we all make mistakes. From the most successful (and self-confident) person, down to the most timid and withdrawn person. The difference between the two is the successful person accepts that they will make mistakes, but tries anyways. The ability to do it anyways is the very definition of inner confidence. The confidence that if we do end up messing up, we'll manage to recover and try again. The world won't end if you make a mistake. You won't be an outcast or looked upon as if you're a fool or a failure if you make a bad choice. Because we all have made mistakes, and if we continue to breathe, it's a certainty that we all will make more of them. Don't be afraid of messing up -- accept it and press forward. That acceptance is what true inner confidence is.
Make a point of being aware of what your intuition is telling you. It make come in the form of quiet inner voice, or a balking, or even an excitement to go ahead. Listen carefully to your instincts. Recognize that they might be wrong, but trust them. If things start going wrong, make adjustments to your plans and your decisions. Adapt and make a mental note of what went wrong. Your instincts will learn, and you'll make better decisions in the future. But trust in yourself.
Trusting for personal growthIf you can't seem to trust yourself, you'll live a timid, self-limiting life. You'll do only those things that you know you can do well and avoid trying anything that might involve risk. Which, unfortunately for those people, represents 99.9% of the life that they could be leading. Those who cannot trust themselves, doom themselves to a life of mediocrity. A life that will always be empty of true joy and fulfillment.
The problem with always living a safe life, is that our ability to trust in ourselves and our instincts and talents will wither and atrophy. Just like our muscles (including our heart muscle) when we choose to live the coach potato lifestyle. When we need our muscles, we find that they are unable to help us. By constantly playing it safe, our trust in ourselves and our self confidence will wither and fail us when we need it the most. We must exercise our self-trust continuously, in order to strengthen it and keep it ready when the time comes.
Developing inner confidence isn't an instantaneous thing. Development of anything takes time and effort. In this case, the effort is being willing to take reasonable risks. A willingness to explore what life has to offer. To discover what hidden talents lay buried deep within, unused but ready to be exploited. To discover the possibilities around and within you. To consider and try, then adjust and try again. Timidity leads to emptiness. Confidence leads to discovery and wonder.
Start down that road of discovery. Start trusting your instincts. See what life has in store for you. Prepare to be pleasantly amazed, and blessed.