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5 Essential Elements of Natural Self-Confidence

5 Essential Elements of Natural Self-Confidence

Do you find yourself wishing you had more self-confidence?

I know what it is like to look around and see people who appear to have all the self-confidence in the world, while you are silently suffering with self-doubt.

Of course, those very people you envy probably look at you in a similar way — hiding their own doubts and wishing they had it all together.

Silently suffering in self-doubt often inspires goals to be more confident. Interestingly, self-confidence is not an achievement. It is the a natural outcome under certain conditions.

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The following five elements of self-confidence address those conditions. When you are in line with these principles, you cannot help but be more confident!

Here are the 5 essential elements of natural self-confidence:

1. Know your limits.

Interestingly, knowing what you can’t do is an important element in knowing what you can do with confidence. I remember as a young and nervous counselor that much of my hesitation came from thinking I needed to be able to work with and cure anyone of their psychological problems.

Over time, of course, I learned which people I work best with and which people I need to refer away. What a relief! Admitting to myself that I cannot work with just anyone was a huge confidence booster. I was no longer afraid to pass on a case, and I approached the people I could work with knowing I was well-equipped for the job.

Are you lacking confidence because you are biting off more than you can chew, or pretending you know something you don’t?

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2. Know your values.

Values are indicators of what is important to you. When you know your priorities, you can focus on them and pass on everything else.

When you are not clear on what is important in your life, something happens that undermines your confidence — you typically turn to others to determine the agenda. This naturally puts you in a one-down position.

3. Get skills.

Confidence is often tied to competence, as it should be. I want the pilot of the plane I am riding in to be confident. I want his confidence to be based squarely on his level of skill. If he doesn’t have the skill to fly, he should lack confidence.

And the same goes for me in my life. When and where I don’t the have skill, I am okay lacking confidence. It is possible to lack confidence in spite of having an appropriate level of skill, but competence is always a factor.

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4. See others as people.

Often we feel inadequate because we see others as ‘more than’ and ourselves as ‘less than’ by comparison. We see others as having it all together and not suffering the way we are. This is rarely true.

As soon as you get to know someone beyond the public persona, you soon discover a plethora of struggles that are the hallmark of the human condition. Everyone has their cross to bear. When you tune into this fact, you will get better at seeing people as people — we are all in this together! Understanding this comes as a relief and happens to build social confidence.

5. Act!

When all is said and done, you need to just go for it! Confidence builds as you take positive action and begin to see positive results.

Take these elements of natural self-confidence and meditate on the ones that you resonate with. Take your understanding of them to a deeper level and watch your confidence grow.

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Align yourself with the above and feel your self-confidence slide into place!

If you find yourself resisting the process of gaining greater self-confidence even though you know what it takes, then you may very well be prone to self-sabotage.

Self-sabotage is an entirely different issue that you should learn about, as it could be the only thing in your way!

More by this author

Mike Bundrant

Co-Founder @inlpcenter, which offers NLP training and life coach certification to students in over 70 countries.

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Last Updated on October 16, 2019

Invaluable Lessons You Can Learn From Your Mistakes

Invaluable Lessons You Can Learn From Your Mistakes

Do you like making mistakes?

I certainly don’t.

Making mistakes is inevitable. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could be at ease with them?

Perhaps there is a way to think of them differently and see their benefits.

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Why Mistakes Feel Dangerous

Mistakes often feel dangerous. Throughout human history, our errors have often been treated as dangerous for a variety of reasons:

  • Our vulnerability. We have limited and fragile support systems. When those systems fail, people often lose their lives.
  • Real dangers. Nature can be dangerous, and making mistakes can put us at the mercy of nature and its animal residents seeking a meal.
  • Ignorance. Many cultures scapegoats someone whenever there is a failure of some kind. Scapegoating can be serious and deadly.
  • Order. Many societies punish those who do not conform to the prevailing orthodoxy and treat difference and non-conformity as a mistake. Even our brains flash an error message whenever we go against prevailing social norms.

We have a history of handling mistakes and failure in an unpleasant way. Since each of us carries our human history with us, it can be a challenge to overcome the fear of making mistakes.

If we can embrace the reality of mistakes, we can free ourselves to be more creative in our lives and dig up some interesting insights.

Why We Can’t Avoid Making Mistakes

Many people operate under the notion that making mistakes is an aberration, a mistake if you will. You can call it perfectionism but it is a more substantial problem. It is really a demand for order and continuity.

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When we think we can eliminate mistakes, we are often working from a perspective that sees the world as a fixed place. The world, however, is not so obliging. Like it or not, the world, and everything in it, is constantly changing.

Change is more constant and pervasive than we can see with our own eyes which is why we often miss it. Our bodies are constantly changing. The natural conditions of the earth change constantly as well. Everything, including economic and cultural systems have life cycles. Everything is in a constant state of flux.

We cannot see all of the changes going on around us since rates of change vary. Unfortunately, when we try to create a feeling of certainty and solidity in our lives or operate from the illusion of stability and order, we are fighting reality and our natural evolution which is built on adapting to change.

It is better to continually bend into this reality rather than fight every change we experience. Fighting it can cause us to make more mistakes. Finding the benefits in change can be useful and help us minimize unnecessary mistakes.

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Lessons Learned from Making Mistakes

Life has so many uncertainties and variables that mistakes are inevitable. Fortunately, there are many things you can learn from making mistakes.

Here is a list of ways to harness the mistakes you make for your benefit.

  1. Point us to something we did not know.
  2. Reveal a nuance we missed.
  3. Deepen our knowledge.
  4. Tell us something about our skill levels.
  5. Help us see what matters and what does not.
  6. Inform us more about our values.
  7. Teach us more about others.
  8. Let us recognize changing circumstances.
  9. Show us when someone else has changed.
  10. Keep us connected to what works and what doesn’t work.
  11. Remind us of our humanity.
  12. Spur us to want to better work which helps us all.
  13. Promote compassion for ourselves and others.
  14. Teach us to value forgiveness.
  15. Help us to pace ourselves better.
  16. Invite us to better choices.
  17. Can teach us how to experiment.
  18. Can reveal a new insight.
  19. Can suggest new options we had not considered.
  20. Can serve as a warning.
  21. Show us hidden fault lines in our lives which can lead us to more productive arrangements.
  22. Point out structural problems in our lives.
  23. Prompt us to learn more about ourselves.
  24. Remind us how we are like others.
  25. Make us more humble.
  26. Help us rectify injustices in our lives.
  27. Show us where to create more balance in our lives.
  28. Tell us when the time to move on has occurred.
  29. Reveal where our passion is and where it is not.
  30. Expose our true feelings.
  31. Bring out problems in a relationship.
  32. Can be a red flag for our misjudgments.
  33. Point us in a more creative direction.
  34. Show us when we are not listening.
  35. Wake us up to our authentic selves.
  36. Can create distance with someone else.
  37. Slow us down when we need to.
  38. Can hasten change.
  39. Reveal our blind spots.
  40. Are the invisible made visible.

Reframe Reality to Handle Mistakes More Easily

The secret to handling mistakes is to:

  • Expect them as part of the process of growth and development.
  • Have an experimental mindset.
  • Think in evolutional rather than fixed terms.

When we accept change as the natural structure of the world, our vulnerability and humanness lets us work with the ebb and flow of life.

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When we recognize the inevitability of mistakes as part of the ongoing experiment which life is, then we can relax more. In doing so we may make fewer of them.

It also helps to keep in mind that trial and error is an organic natural way of living. It is how we have evolved over time. It is better to be with our natural evolution than to fight it and make life harder.

When we adopt an evolutional mindset and see ourselves as part of the ongoing human experiment, we can appreciate that all that has been built up over time which includes the many mistakes our ancestors have made over thousands of years. Each one of us today is a part of that human tradition of learning and experimenting,

Mistakes are part of the trial and error, experimental nature of life. The more you adopt the experimental, evolutional frame, the easier it becomes to handle mistakes.

Handling mistakes well can help you relax and enjoy all aspects of life more.

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Featured photo credit: Sarah Kilian via unsplash.com

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