All around you are confident people….but are they really? Very often this is not the case. I come into contact, through my work, with a lot of people who lack confidence. Many of them put on a ‘good show’ and act confident but inside they are struggling. You may be surprised to know that your boss lacks confidence when talking to groups of people or to high net-worth clients or your best mate fears social occasions and it’s only that glass or two of wine that gets them through the evening.
Where does the confidence we are born with go?
It is rare not to see a toddler with confidence; so it is fair to say that we are born with confidence. However, over the years, it slips away from us. Lack of confidence can cause us to miss out on areas of life such as socialising, reaching our career goals, standing our ground or travelling. It can also be an important factor in procrastination as the lack of self belief can cause us to subconsciously decide not to try something or to stop half way through “if I don’t try I can’t fail”.
There are many reasons and events that can cause our confidence to fade. Up until the age of 6 we are very open to suggestion whilst our individual ‘belief system’ forms. This belief system can be so unconscious that we are not consciously aware of many of our beliefs despite the fact that we live our life by them.
As we start to become more self aware, we begin to become more aware of our thought processing.
The type of reasons for our confidence disappearing are:
- Events that happen to us; for example standing up at school to read a poem and forgetting your lines, the trauma will leave you terrified to stand up in public again most likely.
- Receiving criticism, especially whilst young. This criticism is absorbed by our belief system. For example if a parent says that your school results are “not good enough” you will form a belief along the lines of “I’m not clever enough”. Then you will compound that belief with every event in your life that proves that to be the case, e.g. misspelling a word, not being top grade in mathematics, failing your driving test. However, when you do something well, you will disregard it as perhaps a fluke or not important or you will focus on someone else that has done better. Sound familiar?
- Being bullied will cause people to lack confidence when in effect it is the bullies that are insecure. The moment you stand up to those bullies they tend to back away.
- Behaviour we have learned from those close to us when we are brought up can be a contributor. For example, your mother was always nervous when going to the shops or clearly hated social occasions so you learn that these are anxious times and don’t feel you have the confidence to deal with them.
How to Overcome Lack of Confidence
It really helps to overcome how your mind is viewing events and then to change your feelings on these events. This is where hypnotherapy is a great tool as well as using Emotional Freedom Technique, which, once learned, is a ‘tool for life’ that can clear things long term.
Most people feel confident at some time in their life even if it is whilst at home cooking a meal for example. Because you know how to be confident you can be guided to use this feeling in situations where you previous lacked confidence.
Very often working to overcome the negativity in that ‘inner voice’ – you know the one, that running commentary “oh, I can’t do that” or “that’s too difficult” – is a great way to overcome lack of confidence. Start to answer that voice back with “I can do it” or “I will give it my best shot and that is good enough”.
Sometimes we need a little help to clear issues such as this but the benefits can be so rewarding and even life changing. Often stepping out of that comfort zone and achieving brings huge satisfaction.
Ann Bowditch GQHP, GHR Reg., META-P
Dip (Hyp) Hypnotherapy
EFT Level 3 (AAMET Certified) & Matrix Reimprinting
Meta-Health & EmoTrance
Colour Mirrors Teacher & Practitioner
PSTEC Level 1-A (Advanced)