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Building up Self-Confidence

March 31, 2013

Ririn Dwi AryantiConfidence is belief in your self. It means you think of your strong attributes and not your weaknesses – real or imaginary. Confidence is not an arrogant self exertion. It is not the confidence of a Julius Ceasar – “I came, I saw, I conquered.” It is a confidence which allows your real self to come forward.

Confidence is compatible with modesty and humility. If we really have self confidence we will not feel obliged to try and convince others. When people exert their ego and tell us of their own achievement and greatness, it is often because they actually lack self-confidence. Therefore, they are fishing for complements to boost their fragile ego and self-confidence.

How Can we Build up Our Confidence?

Some students are so lacking in confidence they want to avoid even the mock interviews. This is the worst thing to do. If we spend our time worrying about potential outcomes our confidence evaporates as we imagine unpleasant scenarios. There is a lot to be said for remaining active and practising what we lack confidence in. When we actually do something, we realise that many of our fears are ungrounded and therefore we can effectively build up our confidence. If we never practise, we will always struggle with confidence. If we lack confidence in speaking with people the best thing is to try and find situations where we can get plenty of practise.

  • In short to build up confidence – Less thinking more doing!

Learning To Deal With Criticism

On various occasions we will be criticised. But, this should not be the end of our world. The criticism does not apply to our self, but a certain action or aspect of our being. In this sense we should look upon the criticism as just an opportunity to improve and learn. If the criticism has an unpleasant tone, we should pay no attention to that. It is important to keep a balanced attitude, don’t just focus on the criticism of others, remember also the encouragement of others.

Don’t Compare

[Many] potential interviewees imagine that everyone else must be the perfect candidate who is able to seamlessly switch between explaining the economics of the credit crunch to discussing the implications of Kantian ethics on issues of euthanasia. The point is by comparing ourselves to others, we are liable to lose our self confidence because it is easy to generate feelings of inadequacy.

Don’t Judge Others

The way to self-confidence is not by denegrating other people. People who spend a lot of time criticising others, often lack self-confidence and they subconsiously try to make themselves feel better by putting others down. We should not look [down on ohters], but just focus on our own life.  Those who judge harshly others, usually end up judging themselves, and it is this relentless self criticism that can knock our confidence.

Don’t Set Unreasonably high Expectations

Another reason for lack of confidence is people set themselves goals of near perfection. Because they struggle to reach this lofty goals they think of how they have fallen short and missed the target. Rather than measuring how much we have fallen short of perfection, we should concentrate on the progress we have made. One example, is when asking a question, students will sometimes say nothing because they are struggling to find the ‘right’ / ‘perfect’ answer. The interviewers often ask ‘difficult’ question where there is no obvious right answer. They are looking for students who have the confidence to explore ideas and perhaps get half way there.



From → Emotions, Health

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