What if I were to tell you that you’ve been lied to for most of your life?
Not a grand conspiracy, Illuminati, alligators in the sewer kind of thing, but a quiet lie.
A lie that you’ve probably been told since childhood.
Do you want to know what it is?
Of course you do – you read the title after all.
The lie is that if you work hard, do a good job and be a nice person, then you’ll get what you want out of life.
I was told this lie since I was kid and you probably were to.
So, Should You Just Not Work Hard Then?
Well, to be honest, working hard, doing a good job and being a nice person will get you a lot in life but it won’t get you everything.
After all, you could be the nicest person in the world and I guarantee that you have suffered from:
- The pain of rejection – by romantic partners, friends, family members, jobs, etc.
- Lack of recognition – being passed over for promotion, having your hard work stolen (or worse: counted towards a group assignment grade)
- Not getting what you want – in terms of your health, abundance, love and freedom
But to be 100% honest, hard work and being nice isn’t a complete sham.
There’s just a huge part of the puzzle that is usually completely missed out.
In fact, most of our teachers throughout life simply forget that it’s a necessary ingredient.
Or, when they do share it, it’s true importance is understated or simply not taught effectively!
So, what is that missing part of the puzzle?
What Is Self-Confidence and Why Is It Important?
The simple fact of the matter is, you won’t get too far in life if you don’t have any self-confidence.
But what is self-confidence and why is it important?
According to Lexico, self-confidence is "a feeling of trust in one’s abilities, qualities and judgement".
And sure, a dictionary definition is good, but let’s go a little deeper.
The True Definition
The true definition of self-confidence is believing in yourself enough to go after the things that you want out of life.
So, whether you want to…
- Ask your boss for a well-deserved raise after years of having your nose to the grindstone
- Quit your job for good and start that charity you’ve dreamt about since you took that gap year trip to Africa
- Ask your boyfriend or girlfriend to make you the happiest person alive and marry you
…self-confidence will give you the courage and strength you need to achieve your dreams, passions and deep desires.
Self-confidence is like a key that opens every door.
How To Get Away With A Con
After all, the term con-man comes from the term “confidence man” or “confidence trickster”.
The greatest con-artists and scammers in the world have one thing in absolute abundance: self-confidence.
- William McCloundy - "sold" the Brooklyn Bridge to New York tourists
- Charles Ponzi - created the eponymous "Ponzi Scheme"
- Bernie Madoff - took the "Ponzi Scheme" to the next level, conning people out of almost $65 billion
They may not have believed in what they’re saying, but they believed in their ability to sell anything to anyone at any time.
Because they had astounding levels of confidence.
And approaching any situation with self-confidence makes it 5x, 10x, 100x more likely that you will actually succeed.
So, why is self-confidence important?
The Amazing Benefits of Confidence
Well, when you’ve got it, you’ll:
- Stand out from the crowd in a meaningful way – no arrogance or attention-seeking, just confidence
- Stand up for yourself, defend what you believe in and go after what you want
- Have the courage to embrace fear and then crush your goals anyway
- Get over your mistakes as if they don’t even matter – because really, they don’t
Ultimately, when you have self-confidence, you’ll discover who you really are.
You’ll be able to truly understand, express and live your dreams, goals and passions every single day.
That’s why it’s important.
That’s why you need self-confidence.
What Can Low Self-Confidence Lead To?
So, let’s say that two people with equal qualifications and experience are interviewing for the same job.
Your job is to decide which one of these people is the best fit for the job.
In terms of talent and ability, they’re identical.
But there’s one key difference…
Person A avoids eye contact, seems uncomfortable talking about himself and seems like he just can’t wait for it all to be over.
Person B, on the other hand, has the right amount of energy, talks about herself and her work with pride (not arrogance), is friendly and enthusiastic.
Which of these two do you think gets the job?
Pretty easy, right?
Sympathy for Person A aside, Person B is probably getting that job.
Because she demonstrated self-confidence.
Never Leave Home Without It
It’s never a good idea to go into any situation with anything less than confidence in yourself.
A lack of self-confidence can lead to all sorts of negative life outcomes.
And, the strange thing is, having worked in recruitment before, I’ve seen this situation play out time and time again.
In fact, I’ve even seen underqualified people get great jobs over highly educated, experienced individuals just because of their confidence and enthusiasm.
There are no downsides to having self-confidence in abundance.
But there are some serious drawbacks to lacking self-confidence.
The 5 Main Drawbacks of Low Self-Confidence
- Self-doubt – not knowing if you’re making the right choice, overthinking and paralysing yourself with fear
- Lack of self-worth – always thinking that you’re not quite enough and never will be
- Not using your full potential – always feeling like you could do more and be more
- Falling back on unhelpful coping mechanisms – validation, drinking, recreational drugs
- Slow progress through life – difficulty in finding the right career, relationships, friendships because you don’t want to take risks
Fear, low self-worth and a lack of confidence can quickly and efficiently ruin your life.
But only if you let it.
Now, let’s flip the coin and take a look at the other side.
Why Is It Good To Have Self-Confidence?
We all know that it’s been a wild ride these last few years throughout the world.
Love him or hate him, Donald Trump is currently the 45th President of the USA.
He’s a fairly savvy businessman, TV personality and author.
By no means is he the best in the world at any of these things.
On the surface, no one would have believed that he would become president ten years ago.
But what he lacks in subtlety, (positive) world-changing policy and politeness, he makes up for with one overwhelming trait:
Some will call it arrogance, narcissism or pure bravado, but there is no doubt that he believes in everything he does.
So, what can we take from that?
Lessons From The Donald
Will self-confidence make you the next President, a real estate billionaire or host of The Apprentice?
…but it can!
At the end of the day, self-confidence is the key to making the progress that you want in life at the time that you want it.
Your career will grow faster if you’re willing to have the confidence to ask for what you want.
Whether it’s a raise, a promotion or just to leave a dry, boring project, self-confidence can and will get you there.
Your relationships can be built stronger and more rewarding.
But you have to have the courage to say what you feel.
You can get almost any experience you want from life.
But you have to take the leap, even (and especially) when you’re afraid.
That is why self-confidence is a must.
What Does Self-Confidence Look Like?
Well, here comes another lie!
When we think of the epitome of confidence, we think of someone like James Bond.
He’s smart, attractive, great with the ladies and an absolute badass.
If you wanted to describe someone with extraordinary levels of confidence, you’d probably just describe 007.
(Prior to the lazy 2015 Spectre, of course.)
But what if I were to tell you that this is just another lie?
What if I were to tell you that self-confidence isn’t the unrealistic target of Bond-like swagger?
But, if it’s not that, then what does self-confidence look like?
The James Bond Stereotype
Well, the stereotype would imply that you have to:
- Be Kevin Hart levels of funny
- Be Supermodel-levels of attractive
- Have loads of money – mainly for fast cars, dates and gambling
- Be super, mega smart
- Have a great career – either corporate or espionage (dealer’s choice)
- And of course be highly Extroverted – with a serious capital E
Well, it’s all lies!
And thank god for that because 99% of people in the world won’t tick at list one of the boxes above.
Self-Confidence Is A Personal Journey
The simple truth is, self-confidence is a hugely personal journey.
It looks different for every single one of us.
For one person, it might be stepping out of the house without spending hours in preparation to look good.
For another, it’s walking into the manager’s office to quit your job and travel the world.
It’s different for everyone.
But, there is one thing in common that all self-confident people have.
But we’ll get to that later.
First, we have to get out of the starting gate of self-confidence.
What To Do If You Have No Self-Confidence?
You’ve discovered another lie!
There is no such thing as having no self-confidence.
This is a hill that I will gladly die on.
Nobody has no self-confidence.
Now, you might be thinking that you have no self-confidence but I’m here to tell you that you do.
After all, you wouldn’t be on a self-improvement website if you didn’t at least have some confidence that you can improve yourself.
No one has ZERO self-confidence.
EVERYONE is confident about something.
It could be:
- Videogames or veganism
- Curly fries vs. crinkle cut fries (curly all the way, btw)
- Loving animals or hating animals
Self-confidence is not an all-encompassing state.
Instead, it’s a learned skill that has endless applications.
Now, the most important part of that last sentence is not “endless applications”.
Rather it’s the part about self-confidence being a “learned skill”.
Self-Confidence Is A Learned Skill
Just like piano, football and photography, self-confidence is learned.
Yes, there are those with natural talent, but they are a minority.
Everyone else learns self-confidence and, more importantly, how to accept themselves.
And there’s another thing that you need to know too…
The Ever-Shifting Scale
Self-confidence exists on an ever-shifting scale of low to high.
Sometimes you’ll have low self-confidence in one area and high self-confidence in another.
For example, I’m confident when speaking in front of dozens or even hundreds of people.
I’m less confident filming a YouTube video alone in my room – but I’m getting better at it.
You Don't Have To Be The Best
You don’t have to be the most self-confident person in the world either.
The truth is, confidence built on being the best or being perfect will either never come or will never last.
Eventually, there will always be someone better at something than you are.
But knowing that and doing your best anyway, that’s what true self-confidence is.
So, how do you do it?
How Can You Improve Your Self-Confidence?
Well, first thing’s first, my blog and YouTube channel are dedicated to doing just that!
All that good stuff!
Jokes aside though, before I go, I want to share with you five things you can do to start improving your self-confidence today.
5 Simple Steps To Build Self-Confidence
- Treat self-confidence like any other skill – practise it daily and it will become second nature
- Just allow yourself to be a beginner for a while – it’s hard work, but stick with it (you’ll thank me later)
- Start with what you’re confident about and build from there – whether you’re a huge nerd or a bit of a jock, find what you’re most confident doing and expand your comfort zone from there
- Accept that making mistakes (especially embarrassing ones) is part of the process – it will all be worth it in the end, so take it on the chin and move on
- Keep self-compassion in your heart at all times – give yourself a break, let yourself be imperfect and love yourself for it
Final Thoughts: Why Do We Need Self-Confidence In Our Lives?
With a reasonable level of self-confidence, there are very few doors that life will not open for you.
Self-confidence can allow you to:
- Find the courage to express your feelings
- Fight the fear of taking risks
- Follow your passions and see where they take you
- Expand your social circle, make amazing friends and find amazing relationships
- Be honest with yourself about what you want from life and then go out and try to achieve it
What Could Your Life Be Like?
Imagine if you had the ability to just be who you always thought you could be.
That’s what self-confidence is and that is why self-confidence is so important.
So, start practising today.
You never know where it will take you in the future.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this blog post today.
What will your life be like once you’ve mastered your self-confidence?
Let me know in the comments section down below. Also, leave any questions that you might have down there as well and I’ll always answer as soon as I can!
Make sure to share this blog post if you think it will help your friends, family and acquaintances!
Also, if you’re interested in working with me to skyrocket your confidence and create a breakthrough in your life, then make sure you check out the Work With Me page.
Thanks for your readership and I look forward to having you back on LTUK very soon!