First a quote: “Confidence isn’t thinking you’re better than anyone else, its realizing that you have no reason to compare yourself to anyone else.” – Maryann Hasnaa
I have always found self-confidence and self-worth to be curious things. Both seem fragile, both are important elements of success, contentment, and even happiness. For so many of us, both can seem elusive and difficult to maintain.
In my own life, struggling with self-confidence has often felt like a roller coaster ride. I could be rolling along, feeling on top of the world, and then seemingly out of nowhere, something, or someone, triggers a downward spiral of self-doubt.
As I’ve gotten older, I have become more comfortable sharing the challenges I have had with self-confidence. In doing so, I have become increasingly aware of just how many people have been fighting a similar fight. In fact, almost always, when this topic comes up in workshops, or with coaching clients, many people have shared similar feelings of low self-esteem, self-worth, and self-doubt.
From casual observation, I have identified four destructive forces to a healthy sense of self-worth:
- Our personal self-talk. Not including time spent in solitude, mediation, or prayer, I have often said that the most important conversation we have each day, might just be the conversation we have with ourselves, about ourselves. Many of us are kinder to our friends and families than we are to ourselves. Click here to read: “Would you say that to a friend?”
- The value we put into what other people say about us. Eleanor Roosevelt said “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” Perhaps the topic for another MMM.
- How we treat others. When we respect ourselves, we tend to be more respectful of others and vice versa.
– Click here to read: “How many positive ripples will you create today?”
– Click here to read: “Are you running a deficit?”
- A tendency to compare ourselves to others.
Think about what people tend to post on social media. (In particular, prior to our current political climate.) Before the world seemed to turn so completely ugly, most people tended to post the good things happening in their lives. We would see posts from exotic vacations, food shots from fancy restaurants, family highlights, new cars, new homes, wedding pictures and the like. If you think about it, we mostly see a “highlight reel” from the best of other people’s lives.
But, those “highlights” weren’t the full story, regarding what other people were experiencing. Rather, we just see what they were willing to post and share. Often just glamour, positivity, and fun. I suspect many people find themselves thinking, “Gosh, my life is nothing like that.” It is not usually a fair comparison!
It is easy for people to look around and compare themselves to others. Unfortunately, they often do that destructively. Depending on what is important in their lives at that moment, they can look around and find people who have/are:
- a nicer home
- a newer car
- a prettier wife
- a more handsome husband
- better-behaved children
- thinner, taller, or darker
- a better job, or fancier title
- a bigger bank account
- live in a nicer neighborhood
- more hair, or darker hair
- better grades
- went to a better school
- You get the point
Repeating, when people fall into a habit of comparing their lives to the lives of others, it is not usually a fair comparison and it is almost always destructive to your self-worth.
Here is, in part, what I have learned to help maintain a stronger sense of self confidence:
Don’t compare yourself to others; instead…
- Create a clear vision of the person you aspire to be someday, your “best self.”
- Compare yourself, not to others, but against the person you aspire to become some day.
- Don’t expect to be perfect, just better! Every day, in every way!
- Monitor your self-talk and practice positive affirmations.
- Don’t drill holes in your bucket, or the buckets of others.
– Click here to read: “Filler or drainer, which are you?”
Be kind to yourself this week. Be a bucket filler!
How will you love, live, or lead differently, or better, this week?
Want to share on your social media? Here is a link: Unlocking Confidence
Have a great week!!
“Expanding Your Capacity for Success”
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- “Each time we face our fear, we gain strength, courage, and confidence in the doing.” – Theodore Roosevelt
- “Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit.” – E.E. Cummings
- “If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.” – Vincent Van Gogh
- “One important key to success is self-confidence. An important key to self-confidence is preparation.” – Arthur Ashe
- “If you really put a small value upon yourself, rest assured that the world will not raise your price.” – Jean Sibelius
- “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” – Matthew 19:19
- “With realization of one’s own potential and self-confidence in one’s ability, one can build a better world.” – Dalai Lama
- “You yourself, as much as anyone in the entire universe deserves your love and affection.” – Buddha
- “You are the only person on earth who can use your ability.” – Zig Ziglar
- “Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” – Dale Carnegie
- “Always remember you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” – Christopher Robin
- “A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.” – Mark Twain
- “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
- “Confidence comes not from always being right, but from not fearing to be wrong.” – Peter T. McIntyre
- “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. You are the guy who’ll decide where to go.” – Dr. Seuss