Having low confidence is quite an inhibitor to most successful things.
I’ll set the scene here. I was raised by a dad that constantly berated me and had a mother that had little confidence in herself. As a result I went through most of my earlier years being shy and lurking in the shadows. My life was spent wondering why people treated me in a fashion that had no regard for my feelings. I would get super angry inside, and one day I’d just blow like a super volcano.
Here’s the thing though. Analyse the last paragraph and what I said. Notice anything? Well, people treated me the way they did because I wasn’t open and honest with them about my feelings. My friends and acquaintances weren’t fully sure where my boundaries were and that’s because I hadn’t enforced them. If I was always wondering why people were treating me in the way that they did then it wasn’t because these people were particularly nasty, only that I was allowing them to break my boundaries. I doubt there was any malice in it from my friends, only that I wasn’t being honest with them.
As I grew older and began to work on myself introspectively I realised that the more I liked who I was then the less likely I would allow people to cross my boundaries. As a side effect of loving myself I begun to enforce boundaries to my friends, family and acquaintances. At first this was strange to people because I always allowed them to do so previously, why the sudden change? Some thought I was going off the rails again, and others decided to forget that I existed entirely; those that accepted my change stayed with me through thick and thin and are still here with me today.
People often think changing yourself is an overnight thing, like I would wake up the next morning a new man, but no, it’s nowhere like that. I was aware from the start that I was going to start on a momentous journey of unimaginable discovery and self voyage that won’t end until I take my last dying breath. I’ve always enjoyed learning, but as I grow the more I understand that learning is lifelong.
“The more I learn, the less I understand that I know.”
My favourite quote from Socrates, albeit slightly translated.
That’s why going for an all encompassing approach to self development such as Orion’s Method is integral to physical and mental well-being to further self development and learning.
Many people don’t understand how the body is fully interlinked. You’ll often see someone on Facebook talk about depression but not understand that depression links in with the physical. I’ve had severe depression in the past and as a result I suffered fatigue and stiffness in my joints and muscles. My wife, she has back problems and because she will be in constant pain for the rest of her life it can sometimes lead to depressive episodes. Her lack of ability to do some jobs and the feelings of worthlessness that can accompany it. I spent six months in psychiatric hospital back in the dark ages of psychiatric medicine and awareness, but there was a unanimous understanding of how everything is interlinked. As well as regular medicines, we were constantly nurtured to open up and be honest, and we had plenty of options to play sports. Sometimes we were dragged into it.
I was lucky in a sense. I was caught when Mental Health was making huge advancements and awareness within their sector. They threw help at me like there was unlimited funding and resources to do what needed to be done (and there probably was at the time), and through this I was able to quit drinking, quit smoking, and become a far better, confident, and approachable young man. There was a downside to this, though, and that was I had to quit my job, my life, and any respect anyone held for me in the community to get to where I am now, and it took me over 20 years.
What if you’re a hard worker and don’t have the time like I did to sit down and reflect endlessly? Well, I suggest you pick up google and go search for self development, and reflection courses like Orion’s Method, or you could just stay the same. But where’s the fun in that, right?
Confidence is usually pegged wrongly by many people, and right about now you’re probably wondering what my title has to do with this paragraph? Well, there are SO many layers to confidence; it’s not just shouting someone down in a wild display of anger, no, it’s knowing when to stick up for yourself, but also knowing when to shut the hell up. Confidence isn’t standing up for yourself, it’s also loving yourself, learning always, and admitting when you’re wrong. It’s also the ability to appear vulnerable when society dictates you shouldn’t be.
Confidence is an act of defiance.