I read this quote and immediately thought, “Yes, that’s a perfect way to describe it!”  I do think confidence is very important in the grand scheme of things.  It can get you through some tough or stressful situations.  I believe it is an attractive quality in a person, as long as that person is not over confident.  To me, someone who is confident is comfortable in their own skin being who they really are and knowing they are a good person on the inside.  When that is the case, there should be no reason to compare yourself to anyone or anything but your own ideals.

Unfortunately, I think there is a lot of confusion and mixed messages as to what those ideals should be.  I think our society as a whole values a lot of the wrong things, including certain character traits.  If you’ve been following along, you know the whole point of this blog was for me to express my opinion, sometimes using examples from my personal life, as to what I believe those ideals should and shouldn’t be.  So I guess the first step is having the right ideals to begin with.

I think confidence also plays a big part in how successful you become at something.  The more confident you are, the more willing you are to put forth effort in practicing particular skills or trying new things, and the better you may become.  In other words, success breeds more success.  Meeting new people is a little easier if you exude a little confidence too.  If you come across like a know-it-all though, you will most likely be turning people away, or you will be closing yourself off to trying new ways of doing things and seeing other perspectives.

When I was teaching, one of the things I always seemed to be thinking about is how confident the students felt with what they were learning.  I encouraged them to think about it by sometimes asking them as they gave an answer how confident they were in their answer.  Often, a student would think that by asking that I was telling them their answer was wrong, but I usually wasn’t.  I just wanted them to feel confident and be aware of that feeling, especially if it was a student whom I felt needed to have a little bit more confidence.  I also asked my students to self-reflect every so often, which I could see helped build some kids’ confidence levels.  I think self-reflection is an important step in building self-confidence.  Positive reinforcement and encouragement on my part was often a key factor, too.

Many times, all it takes is looking back and thinking about how far we’ve come with something or what successes we’ve had, even if they are small ones, to help build confidence and a more positive attitude about something.  Confidence IS an attitude and one that we need to consciously think about from time to time.  Perhaps after reading this, you are thinking about something that was a bit of a struggle that you were able to overcome or something you didn’t think you were all that good at that you ended up doing well.  If not, take a moment to think about something now.  I can pretty much guarantee you will feel a little more confident, and perhaps you will even end up with a smile on your face.

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