June 30, 2008

The True Source of Self-Confidence

“Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.”  — Mark Twain

We humans are an odd lot. What passes for “news” these days feels not so much like news as it does titillation designed to sell advertising.

I began to wonder about how news was affecting my life. Are times, for example, really “tough?” I don’t think so. Yet the media tell us otherwise.

What we have is a case of national depression. We’ve brought it on ourselves by repeatedly talking about “how tough the times are.” A friend of mine uses that phrase when he talks about the number of clients he doesn’t have right now.

It’s rubbish thinking, that’s what it is. If you choose to think like that, then don’t complain when your thinking becomes reality.

It takes a little effort to focus on what you WANT and what you HAVE rather than on what you don’t want or have. Choosing a forward- looking attitude means decided to practice what’s known as self- confidence.

Yes, self-confidence is a practice. You’re not born with it, and you can’t store it up. It’s learned behavior, and it’s a life choice. You cannot go a single day without practicing it if you want to have the life you deserve.

My Miriam-Webster dictionary defines confidence as “faith or belief that one will act in a right, proper, or effective way.” In fact, the entry goes on at length about the word to make the following distinction:

Confidence stresses faith in oneself and one’s power without any suggestion of conceit or arrogance.

The word “faith” is used in these definitions. Self-confidence, then, requires us to have faith in ourselves. Out of curiosity, I looked up the word “faith;” it’s first synonym is “loyalty.”

Look up the word “faithless” and you’ll see that the first synonym Miriam-Webster lists is “treachery.”

So, when I do not practice self-confidence, I am performing an act of treachery against myself!

Think about that this week. What will you choose?

Exercise

Upon awakening each morning, and before you get out of bed, make a mental list of the things for which you are grateful. Afterwards, repeat the following phrase three times: “I choose the path of self- confidence today.”

Then go forth, and act with faith in your ability to respond in the right way to whatever life brings you!

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