Creating confidence

May 21, 2021

For many people, being a part of a couple is a source of self-confidence, which is defined as, “a feeling of trust in one’s abilities, qualities and judgment.” Perhaps your spouse believed in you, encouraged you and reminded you of your own abilities. If so, you likely outsourced confidence to your spouse, because if he believed in you, then you had a license to believe in yourself too.

But if we take a closer look, we can see what was really happening.

Confidence, like any feeling, comes from our thoughts. If your confidence was once outsourced to your spouse, you were simply borrowing his confidence in you, which made it easier to think thoughts that created confidence for you.

For example, “He believes in me and I trust his judgment, so I must be capable of doing this,” is a thought that likely produces confidence.

And then our source of confidence passes, and we find ourselves in the depths of grief, disoriented and despondent, needing more than ever a sense of confidence to face this new life. It feels like the most painful irony.

But here’s the truth: our spouse’s physical absence does not revoke our license to believe in ourselves. Confidence can still come from our spouse. But there is more.

As we navigate this life after loss, a powerful skill is generating it for yourself. Confidence comes from a place of believing and trusting that you can do anything you want to do, and although you might misstep or outright fail, you will simply keep showing up as the best version of yourself.

Confidence is a skill that comes from directing your thinking, meaning choosing thoughts that are true and create a feeling of confidence.

We tend to want to wait for big results so that we can have confidence, however, it actually happens the other way around: confidence prompts actions that produce results.

From a feeling of confidence, we take action even though there is fear. Or as my teacher puts it, “Confidence with fear mixed in is courage.” Confidence is making decisions and then having your own back. It is a willingness to fail and then try again.

Which is to say that confidence comes from a willingness to experience any emotion. What if you fail? You may feel embarrassed or humiliated. But given that you’ve already felt the depths of grief, embarrassment or humiliation pale in comparison.

If you are lacking the confidence you need to step through this life, be “on to” your brain. What thoughts are you currently thinking that are preventing you from feeling confident? Notice that these thoughts are not serving you.

Next, create a list of alternate thoughts that are true for you and create a feeling of confidence. What actions might you take from this feeling?

Confidence will fuel your actions as you navigate profound loss, and confidence will lead you to a future that you love. It all starts with a thought.

If self-confidence has been a life-long struggle and finding it now seems impossible, I’ve got you. My private coaching program called Life Reconstructed can help. If you’re ready to invest in yourself and take confident strides to your healing, just click here and we'll see if it's a fit. 

Learn more about Life Reconstructed.

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