Friday, January 27, 2012

If Confidence Fits...

Lately, I've been thinking about what confidence means to me. Confidence has always been something I have struggled with. I often wonder why it is I would question my own abilities to do anything. It was more of an issue when I was younger, and yet I have always wondered why am I afraid to fail? It's crazy because deep down I know I can accomplish anything I put my mind to. It's that evil doubt that creeps into my mind and starts making me question myself. I have proved this time and time again (not to toot my own horn by any means) with each challenge that comes to me, or I seem to find myself a part of, I come through. I may not always be perfect, I do stumble, and there are times where I fall, but confidence isn't about never failing, it's about getting back up and trying again.
How successful can someone be if they never fail?

I would say in the past year, I have done things that I just didn't think I would be able to, I do fear the unknown. I feel anxious and scared to try new things, go places I never have and get involved in situations where I may just not be the best. It reminds me when I used to tell my son, You can't quit because it's hard, you have to learn from the experiences of trying.

In the past year, I have run distances I once thought were too far, completed a sprint triathlon (which included an ocean swim), knowing I'd likely be last, and was determined to do so much more with my running than just show up, I was going to do good work, and benefit someone besides myself. If you ever wonder what it is you are meant to do in life, don't think of it as one big thing, but maybe a bunch of little things that scare you...

"I don't believe you have to be better than everybody else.
I believe you have to be better than you ever thought you could be."
~ Ken Venturi

So how does one gain confidence? I guess the first step would be to determine why it is you think you cannot do something, then do it anyway. If you tell yourself you could never do, see, accomplish, then you will be always be right, 100% of the time. I never thought I'd run a half marathon, or complete a triathlon, or an 8+ mile obstacle run. I never thought I'd want to, but it was more likely I feared that I would fail - so it was easier to avoid it by simply denouncing the notion that I wanted to even try.

"We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each
experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face...
we must do that which we think we cannot."
~ Eleanor Roosevelt 
So here I am, while this post was started days ago, I sit in the Atlanta airport, waiting to board my flight to Anaheim, CA. I will be meeting new people, seeing Disneyland for the first time in my life, and running my second half marathon. I know I will have fun, once I am there. I am also thinking about leaving my family for a few days, and I know they will be fine, I will miss them. 
I am confident that this experience will be so wonderful. I am confident that I will enjoy myself and I a confident that I will be bringing home some pixie dust for my little angel. Anyway, confidence is not something easily gained, but seemingly easy to lose. We have to see a situation, be realistic in our goals and expectations, and celebrate our little triumphs and collect them within ourselves...that is how I think confidence works, we have to build it through experiences over time... sounds like a math equation huh? 


  1. Most of us have those moments of fearing the unknown or even the known and how we need to overcome the doubt that assails us. With the positive attitude and the idea that you will have fun, you will. I wish you the best and hope that your confidence factor goes through the room :-) -- Harold

  2. confidence is not something easily gained, but seemingly easy to lose this line.