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Old 03-05-2012, 11:19 AM   #1
Konada
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3 Phases and 5 Lessons on Confidence

I wish I had learnt this very valuable lesson earlier. It has proved to be a major factor of me breaking out of my comfort zone. So for all you guys out there struggling to find your confidence despite numerous people telling you “Be confident! Just do it!” here’s my view on how to attain that confidence. I hope with this post you can take away the 5 lessons of confidence, and be able to recognize the different phases in your confidence.

To me, confidence boils down to 3 stages:

Phase 1: No Confidence

Everyone has to start somewhere and I’m gonna tell you this right now. The path to confidence begins with no confidence! Ironic isn’t it? The bullsh!t society feeds you about ‘having confidence’ before starting out on something has never exist. Yes that’s right; your first step to confidence begins with NONE.

Now, imagine the first time you decide you want to get a job. Recall your feelings. Were you afraid, hesitant or scared that you can’t do your job? You’re already dooming yourself to failure before you even APPLY for the job. Hesitancy grows and eventually you give up the idea of even applying for the job.

This my friends is the first stage of confidence that many people are stuck in and will never get out of because they do not realize this lesson, which I believe is the lesson that you MUST learn, at the very least take away from here if you want confidence.

Lesson 1: Everyone’s firsts start with no confidence.


Phase 2: Taking the plunge

Following up with Lesson 1, you have to realize that everyone starts on an equal footing when it comes to breaking comfort zones. Look around you, ask people about their first times doing a job, taking up a dancing class or whatever. I can guarantee you 100% that they had some sort of reluctance to take the first step. But what makes them different from the others who are stuck in the hellhole of Phase 1? They act in spite of their fears.

Relate to your similar experiences in the past with mine. I’m using my first job experience because this is where I finally grasped the true meaning of confidence.

So eventually I got tired of sitting around at home and decided to go for a walk-in interview. Despite my primary fears of screwing up, I headed on because I couldn’t stand idling at home no longer. To my surprise, I got the job. Then I thought to myself, “That wasn’t so bad after all”

Familiar isn’t it?

Lesson 2: Confidence begins as one acts in spite of one’s fear for the worst.


Now, some of you may argue that taking the plunge is easier said than done. I never said it was easy, but doing it will definitely do more for your confidence rather than sitting around mucking about it.

However, the following lesson will (I hope) help you to lessen the pressure of going head on in spite of your fears.


Phase 3: Cycle of Growing Confidence

If I could describe this in simple steps it would be this:

1. Screw up
2. Learn from screw up
3. Improve

Repeat Step 1 – 3

Seems easy enough, but most people never get past step 1. Why? Because they are afraid of mistakes!

As a trainee on the job, I was absolutely terrified about screwing up. Heck I even gave wrong change to my very first customer. (Screw up) But then, that experience of screwing up lasted a mere few seconds. I thought how to make sure I gave correct (Learn from screw up) change, implemented it (Improve) and sure enough it was a problem of the past.

Another thing I would like to add is that as I continued doing my job, I realized that mistakes were inevitable as there were definitely things I didn’t know of. As time went on, I accepted mistakes as they were and eagerly sought to learn from them if I made one. Eventually I become more proficient at what I did and this was particularly evident with the satisfaction customers enjoyed and told my manager about my service.

Obviously there is a mindset of learning involved here, but since you’re on a self improvement site I expect you to already be eager to learn.

Lesson 3: Accept that mistakes are inevitable
Lesson 4: Mistakes are your best friends for building confidence


Sure enough, I was totally relaxed in my job after a period of time because I was exposed to it everyday. This is what I call confidence – the ability to proceed with a task in a relaxed state. As long as you expose yourself continually to the zone beyond your comfort zone (lol), eventually it becomes part of your comfort zone and as humans, we are confident in our comfort zones no?

Lesson 5: Confidence grows with continual exposure.

One thing I have to emphasize is that confidence by itself is a very general term. Your confidence in the gym does not necessarily equate to having confidence approaching girls. Confidence is very specific. You want confidence in approaching girls? Approach more girls. You want confidence in running a store? Get a job in a retail/food outlet store!

However I would say that by building confidence in various aspects of your life, you build up your self esteem which makes it easier to break out of your comfort zone in the future.



For simplicity sake, and lazy readers

Lesson 1: Everyone’s firsts start with no confidence.
Lesson 2: Confidence begins as one acts in spite of one’s fear for the worst.
Lesson 3: Accept that mistakes are inevitable
Lesson 4: Mistakes are your best friends for building confidence
Lesson 5: Confidence grows with continual exposure.
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Old 03-05-2012, 01:58 PM   #2
HGKnights
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nice. It's funny how obvious such information you posted is, but so easy to forget.
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Old 03-05-2012, 02:04 PM   #3
rhythmic
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Sometimes the obvious things are the best, and need repeating until people get them. Lesson 2 is probably the most important, and the point about there being varying amounts of confidence in different areas of life, which all contribute to general self-esteem, is very valid. I like it
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Old 03-06-2012, 12:32 AM   #4
Konada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HGKnights
nice. It's funny how obvious such information you posted is, but so easy to forget.

True to a small extent. Many people I met have no clue that confidence has to begin with none so this is a bigger picture for people to see where they are. Almost everyone is on the right track but give up because they feel they have went down a wrong path.
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Old 03-06-2012, 10:10 AM   #5
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Bloody good article. I think this really explicitly outlines something that I had been thinking for a while and you did it in a really clear and concise manner.

It's so true. I remember that in middle school I wanted to become good at doing speeches so I did Drama as one of my subjects. Now, one of the assessment pieces was improvisation, which is basically you're thrust on stage in a group and you then make up the scene as you go along. It's fvcking scary as a 14-15 year old to stand in front of your class mates and die a painful death on stage. But here is the thing, once I'd done a performance where I had no idea what was going to happen next, what I was going to say doing a rehearsed, thought out speech seemed ridiculously easy.

I'm now a relatively confident public speaker and I went through this process that you outlined.

Imagine your comfort zone is level 0 of a building and doing a rehearsed speech is Level 1 (somewhat higher and more daunting), occassionally, taking a trip up to Level 2 (improvised performance) can make Level 1 not seem quite so daunting anymore.

Seek the activities which scare you and make you uncomfortable inside. If the idea of cold approaches does this too you, then you know what to do. Doing something that you have no confidence about is sh1t scary but once you do it you feel like 'the man'.

Something a sports psychologist once told me was "Everyone gets nerves, it's how we perceive them that matters. Think of nervous reactions by your body as such "Nerves are your body telling you that it's ready to perform, to achieve something you haven't before, to dare to fail."

Also, I think the saying "Failure is not an option" is stupid. Any guy, and I mean any guy who has never 'failed' with a girl and struck out with her HAS NEVER TRIED TO ATTRACT A GIRL BEFORE. Most of the guys on this site have come here because they've been hurt or are unsatisified with their dealings with women and say "I'm continually failing, how can I improve?"

A great quote by Robert Kiyosaki "Failure defeats losers, failure inspires winners"

Do things that make you reach out of your comfort zone and dare to fail.
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Old 03-14-2012, 05:57 AM   #6
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You just perfectly described how scared I was the first time I applied for a job and the first time I went clubbing. which are both as natural as breathing now.

I hope it applies to this as well the nerves are very much there, I guess I just need to take the plunge and get a few rejections under my belt.
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Old 03-14-2012, 08:27 AM   #7
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Lots of golden nuggets of truth in this post. Great contribution Konada.

It's like you say: developing confidence is not easy, but once you're wiling to learn from your failures, you're on your way. Repeated failures are a great way to building experience and confidence.
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Old 03-14-2012, 12:16 PM   #8
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Good stuff but I think there is a phase 4 as well. That period where you are spinning so many plates, you are just a maniac and text whatever the hell you want, say whatever you want because you truly don't give a fvck. It's that phase where you know that doing something is out of your normal boundary, even for self-improvement, but you do it anyways and live off the high from fear/confidence. Where something scares the sh!t out of you but you suppress your doubtful thoughts and say fvck it, we're going in because you realize even if you had fail you did things your way and had fun so you never lost.
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Old 03-16-2012, 10:56 AM   #9
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Very good post indeed.

Please don't take this as criticism but more like slightly deeper study.

In order to gain confidence you need to have courage first as you mentioned.

However to have more courage than self doubt - fear, you need to have healty self esteem first.

Confidence is gained and grows with trial and error. You can learn study in advance but bottom line is you have to go out there and do it.

Self esteem however is more state of mind thing. Advantage of that is you don't need to go out there. But going inside of oneself to bring it out can take more courage actually.

Our society is plagued with low self esteem, especially in boys. It takes more to be a Man. Men are forged. Women don't need such complicated process. Society, media is bend on making boys more like girls. And nothing (besides lack of girls' attraction and frustration) forces us to mature up.

Bigger problem is our up bringing. Parents and teachers prefer submissive, non assertive slaves who do what they are told. In order to form boys in to Nice Guys they inflict on us feelings of shame and guilt. Nursery, divorce can produce these feelings of 'I'm no good' too.

And how many of us were explained that 'Seeking of approval of others' is futile, unhealthy and unrealistic? Not many. Why? Becuse people would like to keep influence on you. And of course they themselves have low self esteem and seek for approval.

This is vicious cycle. From parent to child to child....

How to build self esteem? Your true Self has to dominate the demons/ego/Inner crtitic subself, whatever you call it.
It can be done through meditation (Zen, Power of Now) or by Inner Family Therapy or just by being extremely honest and aware about yourself and your thought processes/psyche. It is hard to done with all the distractions. Games, Movies, Girls, Porn, Booze, Ganja, Geekery, Shopoholism etc. and your Ego fears introspection and will try to distract you (devil) because it "thinks" it protects you. However the consequences of that protection are sitting home watching TV and bitting your nails or spanking the monkey.

Chasing girls is fine for building confidence but IMH experience that is just another distraction and there is no avoiding the Inner Game.
For best of the best on inner game see Breaking The Cycle

Cheers
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