Solving My Life’s Riddle: Confidence

Confidence is a very interesting phenomenon because it comes in two forms, inward and outward facing, which aren’t necessarily interdependent of one another. Outward facing confidence involves approaching life with a certain nonchalant nature, not afraid of asserting yourself or failing in various situations. Outward facing confidence is something that I have a hard time accepting and lack. You may have heard the phrase, “Fake it until you make it.” It’s not a phrase I wish to live by because I don’t believe in it. Many people may be attracted to outward facing confidence, but it’s something that doesn’t come naturally to me. I have no interest in applying it because I don’t want to put up a false front just to appease someone. I’ve been reading a book called Radical Acceptance by Tara Brach. She refers to a phenomenon known as “The Trance of Unworthiness.” In essence, the crux of this phenomenon revolves around how the world seems to lead us to just do things for other people, leaving us unsatisfied or feeling unworthy. With that in mind, she encourages us to develop our own internal identity to feel fulfilled and worthy. Meditation and mindfulness have taught me to find ways to look inside myself to find the redeeming qualities that I innately have instead of having to develop new ones to appease to other people. My favorite mindfulness practice is called a body scan. A body scan allows you to check in with all of the individual parts of your body and to understand and appreciate how having all of these are a blessing. Start with your toes and work your way up to your forehead and back of your neck, shoulders etc. Over time, I’ve developed a very strong internal and inward facing confidence. With what I’ve been through, I’ve developed a life perspective about what is important to me and what I value, something that takes people a lifetime to fully figure out. My heart condition and losing my father have made me a stronger person than most people my age. I have a lot more life experience and insight than most guys my age. My heart condition has taught me to be in tune with myself and to take my health seriously. Losing my father has made me very proud to be his son and to know that I have the necessary tools to be a good man thanks to the way he raised me. I’ve learned to do things at my pace, maintaining a barrier between myself and the people around me. Many of my redeeming qualities lie very deep beneath the surface, not something that comes across to people in conversation. I’ve always been told to treat people with kindness, respect, and by being gentle. On the outside, I’m not a very aggressive or overly vivacious person. I’ve always been a peacemaker and quieter introspective person. Confrontation is just not my jam. I hate stressing over things that really don’t have any merit. Living with honesty is very important to me. All in all, you can see how developing new relationships, especially with girls can be difficult for me. I have trouble gaining new relationships with people because of my introspective nature. It explains why I’ve always been into music, why I’m into creative writing, and why I’m into craft beer. All of those activities are individual activities which don’t necessarily require dealing with others. I’ve become most comfortable in my own skin and feel liberated now that I’ve figured out how this is how I choose to life and operate my life. Work with what you have and play to your strengths.

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