Us Brits are not good at blowing our own trumpet. We have real problems in understanding the difference between positive self belief, which is really self love, and arrogance or being up your own backside. Now, I think this is really sad because self belief is essential for so many things in life.
Self Belief vs arrogance
There is a very simple way to understand this. People that have arrogance do not actually have positive self belief they are looking to you to tell them that they are ok. Imagine this scenario. There is a party, a gathering of people to celebrate an event or simply a social occasion, you get the idea. There are two people that are a little different to all the rest. One is sat quietly in the corner having a meaningful conversation with someone else. The other, makes a grand entrance that is loud, demanding attention and, getting it. Which one is the most confident and has the most self belief and which once feels small and insignificant?
Well, people that make lots of noise, who are larger than life and, demand attention are those that need other people to tell them that they are ok. They need the attention to give them value and to convince them 0f their self worth. The person who is quietly getting on with life in the corner has self belief within them. Their value comes from the inside out, they do not need anyone else to tell them that they are ok.
Belief to me is not solid. Belief has that faith element that is found in religion. Confidence on the other hand suggest the solidity of knowledge, of knowing. Very often self confidence developer through experience. When we are confident we might not know how to do something but we have the confidence to know that we can work it out. This ability to problem solve is creativity in action.
Often those that seem to be confident and full of self belief are actually not. Those of us that need to make lots of money, to obtain expensive possessions, to be rich and famous are often those that feel the least for themselves and actually lack self belief. We often make the mistake of believing the opposite. We may see the material trappings as an expression of success and self belief. Often they are saying ‘please pay me attention and tell me that I am okay’. Those that are genuinely confident about who they are do not need to make great shows for others to applaud. They can be happy just being themselves.
People with self belief can deal with it when things go wrong or they make mistakes. To have positive self awareness of your skills, qualities and to be open to accept your failings and, to have the awareness to be getting better at being a human being equals positive self belief.
What do we teach our children?
We, as a society, whether we are parents or not, have a responsibility to teach the children around us to have value in ‘who they are’ and not in ‘what they have’. In a materialistic society it is easy to mistake possessions for personal value and real self belief. So many programmes on TV from “the house wives of…” wherever to “Big Brother” often show us the worst kind of people, with the worst moral and ethical values assuming a sense of self importance and self belief.
There are times in our society when we need to be aware of how we are seen/experienced. I can rarely attend a business meeting in shorts and a tee shirt I need to be in a suit to be seen as credible by my peers. This kind of fancy dress is playing a societal game which, for me, is ok as long as it doesn’t get out of hand. I am saying that I have the same value as you.
Self belief and confidence comes from within. It is an expression of how we feel about ourself and not about what we have or what we can display to others. If you feel deprived you may need to create more wealth, change your job, adjust you living situation and there is nothing wrong with aspiration. However, it does not matter how many material things you manage to accumulate unless you feel good about you and who you are. With wealth you will only be miserable in comfort.
Time to develop some positive self belief and confidence. Look in the mirror every morning for the next one hundred days and say out loud to yourself “I Love You”. If you can’t do it you have little self belief. But, if you do it for one hundred days it will become a new habit that is inner self belief. Because, guess what, self belief is a habit! None of us popped out of the womb with positive or negative self belief. The way that we feel about who we are is what we have learned to be – maybe time to change?
Be happy and keep looking in the mirror 🙂