What is Self-Confidence and poisons that kill it?


The composite word Self-Confidence is a combination of two words, Self and Confidence. Therefore, firstly shall we dig into the word Confidence? Because self-confidence is a subset of the word confidence.

Confidence is a faith or feeling that we can expect results from a person, situation, action, etc. Herein, the point to note is that confidence, in itself, may be both negative and positive. Hence, confidence is merely a thought pattern or an emotion.

Say, we may have faith that a particular friend would stand by us in the times of need. That is a positive confidence. However, we may as well have the confidence that we may not be able to complete a particular task. Yes, that is also confidence. Nonetheless, in the negative sense.

What is Self-Confidence?

Self-Confidence is the confidence in our own self. In other words, a thought pattern that drives us to believe that we can succeed at a certain task, situation, action, etc. However, a lack of this belief is categorized as having a lack of self-confidence.

Self-Confident people generally would have expectations that are realistic. This definitely doesn’t mean that they do not challenge themselves. However, this merely means they live by the age-old wisdom of by the inch, it’s a clinch, by the yard it’s hard. Or, performing one step at a time and not indulging into the philosophy of by leaps-and-bounds.

We agree that this confidence bit is a fairly tricky issue. Certainly, it is!

What can create a lack of Self-confidence?

Aren’t we all driven by expectations? Moreover, they come in a variety of flavors. Certain common expectations we all know are:

  • Expectation from ourselves.
  • Expectation from family and friends.
  • Expectation of family and friends from us.
  • Expectations, Expectations, and furthermore Expectations.

Having tried to list the expectations out, we would all agree that this is an endless list. Thereby, expectations can’t be captured by a list!

That reminds, weren’t we discussing What can create a lack of Self-confidence?

Correct! Then why are we wasting the real estate on EXPECTATION! Absolutely appropriate question, why?

Because the root cause beneath the lack of self-confidence is hidden in the EXPECTATIONS.

Whenever expectations are imaginary (or fantasy like) and/or un-realistic, we may not be able to fulfil them. Thereby, we set the bar so high that we do not give ourselves a chance to reach the target. Hence, we program ourselves for failure!

And, when these fantasies-like expectations are not fulfilled, we witness ourselves in a situation where we are left with a lack of self-confidence.

Are there any symptoms of Lack of Self-Confidence?

Again, similar to expectations this list is endless as well. Moreover, this list is absolutely individual specific. However, the most prevalent symptoms of Lack of self-confidence are:

  • Negativity
  • Unwarranted Worries
  • Irrational Fears
  • Feeling of Despair
  • Doubt about a certain thing and in extreme situations, about
  • Feeling Weakness that may be physical or mental. The sense of physical
    weakness makes us feel drained out. On the other hand, the mental weakness
    limits the capability of working of our brain on intellectual and multiple other
  • Anxiety
  • Depression

The poisons that kill self-confidence:

The most prevalent causes or poisons for self-confidence are listed below. However, this again is an extremely individualistic subject.

  • Expectations: As mentioned above, this list is endless. What complicates the matter further is when the expectations are unrealistic. That results in creating a lack of self-confidence.
  • Fear of failure and embarrassment: Aren’t we supposed we fail sometimes? Certainly, Yes! However, an unexpected result in a previous experience may create a lack of self-confidence. Because we tend to attach negative implications with that particular
  • Inferiority complex: We do understand that we are all unique. However, still, we compare ourselves with others. This may create a feeling that another person is superior to us. Hence, creating an inferiority complex that eats away our self-confidence.

Signs that indicate a lack of self-confidence:

    • Citing unwarranted reasons for our actions. Or, in other words, trying
      to justify our actions, even if it was not asked for.
    • Impulsive reaction to criticism which may be in the form of words
      and/or actions.
    • Withdrawn Body Language
    • Aiming to become a perfectionist.
    • Speaking quietly or mumbling
    • Anxiety

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