Confidence vs self-belief
Most people would like more confidence in certain areas of their lives; indeed it’s why many people wish to see a life coach in the first place. And I get this I really do, especially because I lacked confidence myself when I was younger. And though I would say that improving confidence in any area of your life is great; if you’re still struggling to really get the results you’d like, it may be that you need to dig a little deeper and look at self-belief instead.
Because what you fundamentally believe about yourself is what can really make the difference between settling for a life, or getting the life you want and love. Whereas confidence can be for many people a ‘mask’ they assume. And whilst there is definitely a place for ‘fake it till you make it’ when you’re learning new skills, the spectre of self-doubt can still sneak in, undoing all your good work. Then it can seem like a hard, uphill struggle. Yes you’ve set the goals and done your affirmations yet real change is elusive or so slow it’s hardly noticeable!
So what then can you do about it? Well, you need to examine what your underlying beliefs about yourself are. For instance, do you really believe you can be successful? With help from a coach and a little digging around, this can be enough to uncover what may be blocking success. Often this is an underlying belief of not being good enough or feeling that you don’t really deserve the success you long for - and unless this is addressed any results will often be sporadic and patchy.
To me, the difference between confidence and self-belief can be likened to a tree. The tree is strong and sturdy, whereas the leaves (like our confidence) can be blown away when the weather is unsettled, or changes with the seasons. But the tree has its own unique strength and is happy to be what it is, whether it’s an Oak, Beech or Willow tree. It can even lose a branch or two, yet they can grow back stronger than before. It can withstand many elements and sometimes needs to bend and go with the flow of nature, but if its roots are strong it stays upright.
So to me, self-belief is what keeps you going when times get tough: a fundamental inner strength that helps you bounce back and continue with your dreams, no matter what others may tell you. Building confidence has its place, of course, however working on self-belief and looking at the barriers that stop you being ‘your best you’ provide the foundation for lasting change.
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About Margaret Easton
Mags Easton life coach, trainer and counsellor specialising in self care and balance and helping you discover your best you. 'Your Best You' is a club for ladies who want more out of life, whether that's more joy, time, sense of balance or success (whatever success means to you)!