I remember the exact day it happened. It was April 26, 2011. It was a Tuesday, and an ordinary one at that. Except for one thing. I went to the gas station that afternoon and I said, “$50 on number 8.” There was no hesitation in my request. There was not a slightest high pitch, lilt at the end of my statement. For the first time in my life I was confident in what I was asking.
Just weeks earlier I was apologizing profusely when I had to stop working from a serious bout of food poisoning. In between bathroom breaks, I continued to work on my laptop. Months before that I questioned the validity in ending a relationship with a client who went from benign to ballistic in mere months.
I often got confused as a teenager when calling people on the phone. When I was 25 years old a classmate who I hadn’t seen in years asked me what I was doing for a living. I mumbled, “Loaned Executive.” I was quite proud of it actually, but I was too embarrassed of my pride to spit out the words. This was the result of years of grooming. Never stand too high among the grass. Better to hide than to stick out. Better to blend in with the crowd than to rise above it. But something changed. I went from 13 to 33 in six months.
What sparked this spontaneous bout of confidence?
It took my entire life, but I realized that to live my dreams, not just dream them I needed to strip away at every thought and belief I had about myself. I had to leave the inner critic on the wayside. I needed to rise about the limitations that kept me bounded with fear for so long.
In a few words, I learned to have the courage to be me.
How do you cultivate your own self-confidence?
Remember that cultivating confidence takes time. Remember that you cannot buy it with fancy clothes. Remember that confidence comes from an inner strength of being not outward actions to impress others.
Today, I heard a talk on love. The person asked, “What if you were to love yourself just the way you are?”
If you can begin to practice doing that, you will exude confidence effortlessly. For confidence doesn’t just come from what you wear and how you shake someone’s hand. It comes from the belief that you are worthy of success and happiness and by believing in yourself and your endeavors.
Pretty powerful stuff!
What did it take for you to cultivate your own sense of self-confidence?