Confidence comes from within you. Confidence is also what you show on the outside despite, or to hide, what you feel inside. You may have the tools and skills to do anything you want in the world but without confidence nothing will be done.
Okay, so we all know there are times when we may lack confidence, particularly when we are faced with something new or daunting. Sometimes, despite our lack of confidence, we do it and sometimes we don’t. This is a temporary lack of confidence that can be overcome by experience and learning.
What is really debilitating is when we feel we lack confidence to attempt to do anything. This is more than just a temporary loss of confidence. This is a total lack of confidence that may be allied to low self esteem and a negative self image.
People who lack confidence will often also have a negative image of themselves or their skills. They may also feel that they lack control or direction in their lives, in many cases they may feel that someone or something else is controlling or determining the path of their lives. They can also feel that any success they achieve goes unrecognised or is ‘claimed’ by someone else.
These other people or forces controlling the person may be their parents, schools or institutions, the government, their boss or company, or God or spiritual force such as ‘fate’.
Often a lack of confidence may be cyclical or accumulative. That is to say that a lack of confidence brings about a lack of achievement or recognition for the sufferer. This lack of achievement brings about a greater or deeper lack of confidence. This deeper lack of confidence brings about more lack of achievement…etc, etc. . At its extreme, the lack of confidence leads its sufferer to withdraw and not attempt things because they feel they will not achieve or gain recognition and thereby come to lack any motivation.
It is important to remember that few people lack confidence in all areas of their lives. Some may lack confidence in their work, others may lack confidence in their learning, or their relationships or their sporting abilities. The lack of confidence in an area only becomes an issue when that area becomes important or takes up a fair proportion of time in the person’s life. Many people may lack confidence in, say, their sporting ability but this is not an issue for them if playing sport is not a major activity in their lives.
What does be come a problem is when a person lacks confidence in their own self image or in their own belief in themselves. This is more serious and in such cases the lack of confidence is likely to affect the person’s performance in many areas of their life and hinder them in leading a fulfilling and happy life.
It is my firm belief that coaching can help overcome a lack of confidence in a person by combating low self esteem, promoting a positive self image and supporting a person to recognise and reward their own achievements.
Douglas Woods is a qualified Life Coach, teacher and counsellor. You can read more about his work on his website http://www.dougwoods.com