During a conversation with a friend, the topic of self-confidence came up. He believes that he’s been confident for years, and I share that perspective of him.
It later dawned on me that we can’t know if we are confident in ourselves if we haven’t been tested.
Real Confidence Requires Many Tests
There are different things in which to have confidence. You can be confident in your communication skills, dating skills, and any other skills. But confidence in one area doesn’t necessarily translate to other ones.
Case in point:
I am very confident in my ability to make people laugh because I’ve done it consistently since childhood. That’s more than 35 years, and that ability has been tested a lot.
There have been grumpy people, racist people, and often, people who were mad at me. I still found ways to make them laugh, which contributes to my real self-confidence.
On the flip side, I am not confident that I have what it takes to be a stand-up comedian. Tons of people have encouraged me for decades to take that up as a career, but I’m well aware that the difference between being funny and being a successful comedian is night and day.
I haven’t been tested as a stand-up; therefore, I have no confidence in myself.
We Fool Ourselves
Most of us say that we are confident because it sounds better than saying we’re not. Thinking that you possess confidence does not equate to being confident.
Sure, mindset holds the key to most things. But in this case, there needs to be tangible evidence for us to call ourselves confident.
“Real” confidence is when you have been tested in whatever area relevant to that. As I mentioned, I don’t have real confidence in myself to become a comedian.
Nor a pro athlete.
A politician, either.
“Assumed” confidence would be if I said, “I know I would be a damn good politician.” There’s nothing to back up my claim so, it’s worthless.
The Tests Will Strengthen You
I’ve been mocked and verbally assaulted for many years for being built like an African hippo! And it took me years to realize that I’m a spectacular person despite my “girlish” figure.
Those years represented a whole lot of being tested. Nowadays, I’m incredibly self-confident socially, while also being insecure and self-conscious. I learned that admitting that is one of the strongest things anyone could ever do.
I no longer fall apart and look down on myself if someone makes fun of me. Sure, it’s not exactly great stuff to hear. But I own whatever is true about me, even if it’s humiliating.
Because it’s easier to accept so-called “insults” when they might be true, but don’t define you as a person.
If you want to possess real confidence in anything, make sure you’ve been tested in that area. If not, go and take those lumps.
That shit is so worth it long term.