Confidence is everything.
There are so many people who have a ton of talent, but they fall far below their potential simply because they don’t believe in themselves. Logically, we all know that self-doubt is BS, totally imaginary, but it has an insanely real effect on our lives.
Most people are content to live as shells of themselves because they don’t believe they can make it through the fire of negative psychological emotions. And that’s what confidence is. When you’re confident, you don’t assume that everything will go well. But you do assume that you’ll be able to deal with whatever gets in your way.
So, how do you get there? There’s some area of your life where a lack of confidence causes you to fall short. You’re missing out on a ton of opportunities because you lack it and you know that nothing will change until you get it.
Confidence is the absence of excess, a lack of neediness, a state of mind where you don’t need anything extra or external validation to feel good about yourself and take action.
Let’s take a look at what you should let go of.
“Self-improvement is BS because the self you’re trying to improve doesn’t even exist like you think it does. Realizing this is ironically the fastest road to improvement Because all the stories/beliefs/labels that characterized ‘self’ Are seen through/no longer hold you back.” Tej Dosa
People mistakenly believe that self-centeredness only applies to people who are overconfident and grandiose. Self-centeredness also applies to people who are full of self-doubt that live meekly because they’re afraid to fail.
See, if you’re afraid of failure, especially failing publicly, you overestimate your own importance in the grand scheme of life. You suffer from the spotlight effect. You think everyone is watching and waiting for you to fail when no one really cares.
Because of your large ego, you’re way too concerned about the way you’ll feel if something doesn’t go your way — rejection, embarrassment, falling flat on your face. Notice how feelings of doubt are always rooted in being overly preoccupied with yourself.
The solution? It’s not easy, but take the focus off of yourself and your own feelings and just direct your energy outward. Put your energy into the mission, the projects, the people you’re trying to connect with. Let go of your need to feel important, in either direction, because you’re not.
“The only way to be truly confident is to simply become comfortable with what you lack.” – Mark Manson
I wish I wasn’t balding. I wish I was more athletic (it’s embarrassing to be a black guy who’s not good at basketball). It’d be nice if I wasn’t so absent-minded all the time. People always say they wouldn’t change anything about themselves if they could. BS. We all would. But we can’t.
Even though we can’t, we love creating this mental image in our head where we don’t have any of the flaws that cause us to doubt ourselves. Why do this mental masturbation? For the same reason, people physically masturbate. We get off on it. Both types have the same thing in common — they’re never as good as the real thing.
I know that you know this, but it bears repeating. Your flaws aren’t going to go away. Even if you could make them go away, it’ll probably take too much work to be worth it. Let go of the hold your flaws have on you. You just gotta tell yourself that these things aren’t going to change and that you’re better off being you, as you are because that’s all you can be. Easier said than done. The remedy is the same remedy for all self-improvement concepts. Drill them into your head until you believe them.
“The price for needing it to work is that it doesn’t work.” Derek Moneyberg
There’s a difference between wanting something to happen and needing it to happen. When you want something to happen, you go about your life trying your best, with the hopes that the result you want will come your way. When you need something to happen, you become needy, and neediness repels whatever results you want because you put those results on a pedestal.
Let go of neediness. Confidence can best be defined as a total lack of neediness.
Instead of needing something to happen at a specific time, create systems and processes that will lead to good results. Scott Adams talks about this in his book How to Fail at Almost Everything and still win big:
Goal-oriented people exist in a state of continuous pre-success failure at best, and permanent failure at worst if things never work out. Systems people succeed every time they apply their systems, in the sense that they did what they intended to do.
Instead of needing things to happen, just live your life in a way that inevitably leads to awesome results. If you want a great romantic partner, become an amazing and attractive person. If you want fans for your art, focus on your craft instead of the audience. When it comes to making money, you become successful in business by creating products people want instead of begging them to buy them. Get it? Got it? Good.
“A label locks me into a definition that people use to control me. A vision graces me with an idea that serves to release me.” – Craig D. Lounsbrough
Slapping a label on yourself creates a scapegoat you can use to avoid change. Maybe you’re not an introvert and could benefit from improving your social skills. Maybe you’re not lazy and just haven’t found something compelling to work on. Perhaps you’re not a screw-up and just haven’t turned the right corner in your life yet. Maybe you’re not oppressed by an outside force. and your oppression is in your own mind.
Your behavior tells you who you are. If you want to change your identity, you can, but you have to change your behavior. It’s that simple. But it’s difficult at the same time because you’d rather hold onto your label than change your actions. Your label creates a safe haven and it gives you excuses for why you’re not living the life you want.
Mostly, it helps you avoid the painful realization that you could live a totally different life but you’re just choosing not to. Inaction is a choice. Not making the choice to change is a choice. Scapegoat all you want, but your decisions have a dramatic impact on your life regardless of where you start from.
Let go of your labels. And let go of the story that says your life has to turn out a certain way just because you had certain experiences that shaped you into the person you think you are right now. Once your labels are gone you can literally just start engaging in the behaviors of a more confident person. Simple? Yes. Trite? Very. True? Absolutely.
Remember, when you remove all the BS layers of your personality, you’re left with nothing but confidence. It’s more about loosening your grip on the steering wheel of life than it is about needing to control anything.
It’s the general attitude that good things will come your way because you’re worthy of good things. You’re worthy of good things because you’re living life the right way. You’re living life the right way because you’re not overly preoccupied with living it the wrong way and making mistakes.
You move faster and farther with less weight attached to your life. Free yourself of the weight and you can reach your goals much faster. The major mistake people make in life? They make success much harder than it has to be.
Less strain. More free-flowing action. You got this.