30 Day Challenge/Day 10: Building Confidence

Confidence is an interesting state of mind. Again, it is this awareness or feeling of self-assurance about one’s own abilities or qualities. Ironically, I have found that for me with my teaching, I don’t really instill confidence in people. I believe the student and I actually work together to reconnect them back to what I view as their infancy levels of confidence. Truly in the beginning we are not inhibited. We are willing to “try” everything. Sure over time we develop understandings of what we like and dislike. What hurts us is when we do not develop a realistic sense of competence. As sad as it is, we often focus on negative aspects of accomplishments and/or we have them focused on for us. But still in the very beginning we believed we were capable of anything, partially because we didn’t concern ourselves with failure. Which would be amazing if we could all continue as we mature.

Unfortunately, “failure” also gets a bad rap. There is an incredibly powerful aspect of failure… it can be a very important teacher and guide. It can lead us to achievements well beyond our original expectations. Sure failing isn’t always a fun event but in reflection it can help us to understand events and see new options in a totally different perspective. I know I’m as guilty as others and I get in my own way think “I can’t…” and when that phrase enters my head I get busy with a little self-encouragement. I give myself a huge dose of my own cooking and instead look to see what I can learn if I don’t succeed.

I know that all of us at Attitude First, attempt to create a safe environment that we believe encourages participants to “experiment” with challenges. Ideally. The participants like myself, can work to learn from the failures and enjoy celebrating the successes.

Here is another cool thing. Martial Arts once seemed a domain of boys. In today’s culture the Martial Arts along with other sports help girls (as well as boys- adults included) to experience interactions and skills that help them to “find” their confidence. Through experiences and training, participants learn that they can train, practice, improve and achieve goals. Other benefits: they learn to recognize their strengths, accept or strengthen their weaknesses, handle defeat, expand their circle of friends and learn teamwork. Another confidence-boosting bonus: they stay fit and learn to respect their bodies. All of which leads them back to the first born enthusiasm that was pure and confident.

Confidence is a significant aspect of “self.” (See Day 1) It is not that an individual doesn’t have any, which we sometimes hear said about an individual. They do, it has always been there. It is a unique treasure that must be uncovered, nurtured, invested and grown. It is not subject to success or failure but instead can be enhanced by both. It is a core quality that opens us to allowing ourselves to other motivations.