“Be yourself, because an original is worth more than a copy.” Unknown

“To thine own self be true… Thou canst not be false to any man.” Shakespeare

One statement I’ve heard people make is Self-confidence makes a man. Another one is that a man needs self-confidence to excel in life. While it’s almost difficult to cast aside these two statements, it is important to x-ray the make-up of self-confidence or to find out what it is people refer to when they claim self-confidence. Are we sure that what people have is not false confidence?

What is Self-Confidence?
Self-Confidence is a feeling of trust in one’s abilities, qualities, and judgement. It’s synonymous with self-assurance, belief in oneself, assertiveness, and self-reliance.

With this premise, it might be needful to ask: “Is it possible for you to overrate your belief in yourself while underrating the challenges before you?” In other words, is it possible to be overtly confident in yourself while being oblivious of the issues that confront you? Of course it is, given that nothing is impossible and that one can truly be conceited. Another question is: “where do you draw the line between self-confidence (being self-aware of your strength) as opposed to over assessing or overestimating yourself?”

Here in this post, we want to see Self-Confidence through the lens of what it is not so as not to cast off our true confidence in our abilities which we have developed overtime, or under score our skills which we have deployed as solutions and or fail to properly assess our competencies which have overtime become unquantifiable values to a vast majority of men and entities.

Let me share a few thoughts for now:

Is your Self-Confidence like the Emptiness of the Bunkum of Politicians?
When Politicians speak, they are oftentimes more insincere than sincere and they take the people they represent for a ride. They actually are full of guile. Yes, they speak Bunkum but with so much pizzazz and seriousness, and you can almost swear or give your life for them. Some of the reasons for this reaction is that they actually present some physical inducements to the common people that they canvass. This is prevalent in Africa and other parts of the world.

It takes only a discerning mind that has the knowledge of the antecedents of the speaker/politician in question to differentiate the genuine from the sophist. Unfortunately, such informed minds are often in the minority. Though few, this minority possesses strong and underlying foundation of sincerity in their makeup. Their words are intangible but weighty and dependable. You can hold on to them because it’s their bond. They will only say “yes” when that is what they mean. They’re therefore inseparable with Integrity.

Is your Self-Confidence Hubris?
Each time I have the opportunity, I try to let people know that humility is not stupidity and that leaders should be careful not to be wicked in the name of being strict. The foundation for achievement and huge success has strong elements of self – confidence. A man, irrespective of his lowly and humble disposition, must be able to advance and market his beliefs, ideals and products to anyone he feels will patronise him. He will persist in this preoccupation till he achieves his desire.

This ability proves the presence of his strengths and self-reliance. While other less confident counterparts and competitors see him as proud, he is just a go getter who believes in himself and his abilities regardless of what anybody thinks. Self-confidence in action can often be misinterpreted or mistaken for Pride by the dimwitted and undiscerning mind. In reality, it is not.

Is your Self-Confidence Complacency?
Anyone can be caught in a complacent mood as a result of fatigue, inner cluster of unresolved issues and deep seated thoughts but living in it for periods longer than necessary is not acceptable by any standards. Now, that you’re complacent after you have just recorded a great victory could mean needing to relish in the victory while trying to replenish.

A well developed and established self-confidence from the roots of ethical values, talent development and character ethic has nothing to do in the realm of complacency. To such a person, self-confidence is the tool, a daily attitude, that drives performance and achieves accomplishments.

Is your Self-Confidence the Product of Imitation?
What does fake it till you make it mean? I remember the first time I heard that statement from a keynote speaker at a Valedictory Service some years back and the cheering and nodding it received from the audience. I refused to be taken in by it but the meaning of what the Speaker meant was eventually not lost on me.

During the process of self-development and honing of skills, majority come up with some degree of faking before they hone it and even then development is a continuum. From business name to well developed company content, there are degrees of polishing that are adopted that are not the exact representation of the ideal. Yet, that position is taken in the strong belief and determination of living your dreams in the moment.

The idea is that with each passing day, you get better and closer to whom/what you picture. The totality of that on the job learning and improvement is what boosts your self-confidence. There’s a caution here though: know for a surety that you are unearthing true potentials rather than living in any fool’s paradise. Remember, you’re faking it till you make it. Stay true to that Mantra.

As I end this piece, I leave you with these and advise that you be so guided. It’s failsafe:

“Be not wise in your conceits.” (Romans 12:16)

“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not on your own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

” Cast not away your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward…”. (Hebrew 10:35-36)

If your confidence is rooted and balanced in this Wisdom, you are poised for uncommon excellence. How you surrender to the rigours of accessing these combined values to boost self-confidence and emotional intelligence is the acid test you have to embrace. Do have a fulfilling new week!