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Self-confidence, in moderation

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Written by   80
11 months ago
Topics: Life, Thoughts

Self-confidence is a funny thing. We need a substantial amount of self-confidence to have faith in ourselves, to build our self-esteem, to believe in ourselves and to be able to push ourselves to do the things that we wanted to do. It is with self-confidence that we have the courage to speak and sing in front of an audience, to believe in what we have to offer, in our talent or skill. It is also with self-confidence that we are able to lift our heads up high, in living the life that we want, the life that we possibly dream of.

Self-confidence can build a child’s self esteem and help in a child’s development through their life, in growing up to be strong, emotionally and mentally. For each action a child does, parents and teachers boost the child’s self-confidence by giving them words of encouragement and positive feedback such as “well done” or “good job”. It is through these words of encouragement, that a child sees that what they are doing is correct, that they are on the right path and thus help them to be independent, to have faith in themselves and to continue to do it, to get better at it.

Practice and joining contests or performances help boost self-confidence too. For example, if we play a musical instrument such as guitar or piano, the best way to be better at it is to practice to a point that we perform either for contests or concerts, to improve ourselves, to become better and better at it. The more we practice, the lesser mistake we make and the better we become in order to feel good in presenting our work to others.

In meetings, having a good amount of self-confidence helps in giving us the courage to speak our mind, especially one that is dominated by the outspoken ones. To voice out, to share our thoughts, to seek clarification, to ask a question, it takes some self-confidence, courage, bravery and calmness to organize our thoughts and speech. It is not always easy to speak out loud, for fear of what we say might sound stupid. I do agree that it can take quite a bit to build self-confidence and there is a need to go through stages of encouragement and feedback to build it.

But when we start to have confidence, it is necessary to remember that confidence must continue to be paired with hard work and humility. When we have a little too much of self-confidence and when we start to become lazy, self-confidence may slowly destroy us in ways we do not necessarily realize until it is too late.

In school, one of my favourite subjects was math and I became pretty good at it. I was taught the fundamentals by an amazing tutor. He made sure we understand the foundation because once we understood the fundamental concepts; we could apply the same concepts and methods in all scenarios with different numbers. It didn’t matter how different the numbers were because the fundamental concepts would apply and when we work them, the outcome would be similar, just different numbers.

We were given workbooks that contained past years’ questions and scenarios. As I practiced everyday, I became better and naturally, I was more confident in working my numbers. In exams usually, I would work the questions up as quickly and carefully as I could and then go through them to check one round. If I had the time, I would check another round.

There came a point, I got a little too comfortable, a little too confident that I started to become lazy. In one particular exam, I became too complacent and I didn’t practice as much as I would usually. When the exam started, I worked the questions slowly for some reason because the brain was not working and calculating as fast due to lack of practice. I didn’t have time to check the questions thoroughly and only managed to choose a couple of random questions to check.

But even with that, towards the end, I realized that I have made a mistake by becoming lazy and I started to get anxious that I didn’t get to check through the questions properly. As a result, I did relatively badly for the exam. It was after this incident that I started to become weary and would lose confidence each time I take my math exam. It made quite an impact in my life. I started to doubt myself in most parts.

In another subject, one that I dislike which is history, our teacher was giving us tips on what specific topics to study for the finals, a college entry exams. Out of seven main topics, the teacher was confident that only four topics would be asked in the exam based on her analysis across the many years of exams. We respected her; we believed her as our teacher and we had all the confidence in her analysis. This was confidence on several levels. We focused only in the four topics and ignored the other three. There were a few others, who decided to study all the topics.

On exam day, only one of the topics came out along with the other three, which the teacher was confident will not be asked again. One can say it was stupidity and laziness too. The number of us who chose to focus only on the four topics and not study the other three topics, we were practically whacking ourselves on our heads. It was an important exam and a number of us didn’t do well quite obviously while those who studied all the topics did well.

Yes, self-confidence is good for our personal development but we must never forget to always and to continue to couple it with hard work and humility. We must not slack off just because we think we are good at it and no longer need to do much anymore which is a recipe for failure. Self-confidence tastes better in moderation, just like the many things in life.

Image source: https://unsplash.com/photos/lQuWIesgs5Q

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Written by   80
11 months ago
Topics: Life, Thoughts
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Comments

Yes, completely agree! When self confidence turns to over confidence it instead start creating problems. Missed opportunities as work found to be too easy, loose friends as you start sounding arrogant or pile on too much in your plate than you can handle because you were confident. Like everything else overdose of anything is bad, even self confidence.

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11 months ago

Yup yup! It is good to have a balance, to be able to tone it down when needed to. It takes some practice but self reflection helps. Thank you for dropping by :)

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11 months ago