Confidence Personified

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“To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh

From the time I was a little girl, people told me I was pretty, but it seemed exaggerated every time I heard it. I was bone skinny. My mom was pretty in her prime and I was nothing close to that. Even then, when I look in the mirror, I liked what I saw and it was just the way I wanted it. I choose to be humble not by beauty but by the works of my hand until the day success is exaggerated in my life. But until then, I remain humbly confident in my own space.

People often get carried away with love, beauty, power, fame or wealth. These things can also make us overconfident in some ways that we are prone to misbehave when we have one or all of them. Confidence can be a useful quality for leaders to demonstrate when they wish to gain stature, credibility and influence. However, finding the balance between leveraging the benefits of acting confidently and avoiding the dangers of overconfidence is crucial. Let’s quickly run by a few ideas on how to keep grounded irrespective of our confidence, regardless of the source of it.

Be honest with yourself first. When you carefully consider your abilities, you should begin to recognize your limits and know when to put a check to it.

Do not compare yourself with others. Overconfidence is a way of depreciating other people sometimes just to make yourself look better.

Listen to criticism, especially constructive criticism from people you trust. This may be one of the most important steps in abating your overconfidence. This is not necessarily to say critics are always right but there is a possibility they are right because they see you from a different perspective, you should hear them out.

Treat commitments seriously. Overconfidence can cause you to over commit yourself. When you tell someone you will do something, be realistic in how much effort and time it will take. Promising to love someone forever to the extent of tattooing their name or image on your body might just be the most terrible thing you’ll ever do in another 2 years.

Keep fantasies separate from realities. Fantasy is all mental activity. Reality is what we know through our senses. Fantasy should only be used for entertainment and for brief problem solving. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves with our fantasies.

Remember you are a unique person with your own talents, skills, and goals, and confidence or overconfidence can be a pitfall to be avoided if you mix modesty with your enthusiasm.

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