Where does self-confidence come from? Where does it go when we need it most?
How does an energetic child with a mountainous capacity for curiosity grow up to be a narrow-minded, emotionally constricted person full of hopelessness and suffering?
The answer is simple. We lose the key to the door that opens to a satisfying existence; belief in ourselves and the faith that every day can be sculpted into a masterpiece of joy.
Self-confidence is an elusive commodity that fluctuates with life’s events including, but not limited to; our mood, brain chemistry, the weather, and acceptance or rejection by parents and peers. It is a fragile, unpredictable elixir; here today, gone tomorrow. Yet for a fortunate few, it is a constant, a second nature, a faithful servant and friend, an impenetrable fortress against the most vicious attacks the outside world can muster.
With self-confidence, we can create the next, great wonder of the world. Without it, we are forced to walk bent over through life, a mere shadow on the wall, a faint reflection of our glorious and noble human potential.
When my self-confidence ebbs, I do something loving towards my Self. I try to do something enjoyable. I focus on what I want out of life. I focus on an inner experience of joy and peace. Thinking “peace, love, joy and contentment” actually helps to elevate my mood. If I am standing in line with nothing to do, I’ll think, “I am happy.”
This advice might sound stupid or obvious, but if you find yourself being self-critical for anything more than a few minutes per day, then it’s ALWAYS better to shift to thoughts that are happy and self-enhancing.
My “thought practice,” in combination with the meditation I do daily, has contributed to higher levels of self-confidence and contentment. What I’m doing is filling my mind with uplifting thoughts and my heart with an experience of peace and joy. I’ve found that you need to nourish both the mind and the heart with the right food to live optimally.
Your goals may be (and probably will) be different than mine. Whatever the goal, whatever you want most, thinking of your positive goal is always preferable to self-criticism. Just make sure what you give to yourself is a gift worth having.
As far as finding a way to fill your heart with peace and joy, I leave that up to you. It’s a personal quest. I can tell you how I do it, if you want to know. But as the Nike commercial says, “Just Do It.” Life is short. Live it to the fullest.
Photo courtesy of http://www.howtobuildselfconfidences.com