One day a professor walked into the classroom and gave his students a surprised test. As usual, he started distributing the test paper, placing them faced down on the table. When the students flipped over the test paper, they were all confused. There were no questions but only a single black dot in the middle of the paper. The professor asked everyone to simply write what they saw.
Everyone submitted their answers and the professor started reading them one by one. The classroom was silent. The professor finally looked up and spoke to the class "I had given all of you a white paper with a small black dot and everyone had focused on nothing but just the black dot. How about the huge white space around the dot?" At this moment, the students understood the lesson behind this test.
We are all like these students who can only see the black dot.
The black dot is our weaknesses with which we are obsessed. While there is a huge part of us that carries our strengths, our values and greatness, we habitually ignore them.
The lack of self-confidence is not an outcome but a conscious choice. The more we refused to see the good within us, the more we dis-empower ourselves from our self-confidence.
If you are too, looking for a way to breakthrough the ceiling of your self-esteem, read on to find out how.
SELF-CONFIDENCE CANNOT BE BUILT WITHOUT SELF-AUTHENTICITY
Confidence built solely on mental exercise is draining and unsustainable. There is only that much energy to keep chanting positive slogans in our head to appear confident.
A better and more empowering way of building true confidence is to start from self-authenticity.
When we are living the true version of ourselves, self-confidence becomes a natural by-product. We do not even have to struggle with finding confidence anymore.
We may not be born with confidence but we are all born with a self-identity that consists of knowing our inner purpose, our strengths and our values.
When we were born, we have complete trust in ourselves. There is no academic system that categorises you into smart and not so smart, there is no company performance appraisals that grades you into high and low performers. There are no financial standards to define your worthiness.
We are simply comfortable with who we are. We can hear our inner voices from our heart, no matter how faint the sound is.
Unfortunately, as we began to take in our parents' expectations, what our education teaches and how the society works, we started to replace our own truths with others.
It is through this process of replacing our inside world with the outside world that we eventually lost our authenticity.
Losing this inner guiding power, we become confused about who we are, what we can do and our true worth.
Self-authenticity is in our heart, not our head. When we are able to trust our inner wisdom and authority to live a life that is authentically true to our heart, that is where real and solid confidence is born.
WHAT BROKE OUR SELF-CONFIDENCE?
So, what exactly shut down our authenticity and took away our self-belief?
We might blame it on our upbringing, culture, education and society. However, these are just the appearances, what truly broke us is the underlying emotional pain.
Whether it is through energy reading or Emotion Code® therapy, the answers always point me to the same two emotional culprits- Shame and Guilt.
Each time we received a disapproval or punishment, whether verbally or physically, for our behaviour and efforts, a piece of our self-recognition is taken away.
Such experiences can be humiliating, demeaning and deeply shaming.
Shame can gradually spin into guilt for feeling regretful of ourselves, our limitations, imperfections and our misunderstood life.
Shame and guilt block us from loving ourselves, especially who we truly are. To avoid the pain of feeling ashamed and guilty, we choose to change and alter ourselves just to survive through the harshness.
Feeling self-shame and guilt can make us into good liars where we master the ability to suppress our true feelings and be a people-pleaser to avoid issues.
The inner shame and guilt can also block our voices, our clarity and even creativity. To "play safe", we tend to speak less, follow the rules and stay low profile.
Without a mind of our own, and losing our guts-feel, we succumbed to authoritative powers or those we deemed are "better than us".
AWAKENING YOUR AUTHENTICITY AND RE-EMPOWER YOURSELF
The key to building self-confidence is to go inwards. Like an onion, we need to start peeling off the layers of judgements, expectations and negative experiences that had been implanted into us, to finally reveal the inner core.
Building confidence is not to recreate a different you. On the contrary, it is to trace back to the most original version of you. The most powerful thing that can withstand time, challenges and darkness is TRUTH. When you reconnect to your inner self, you are once again, plugged in to your everlasting power.
We have to start releasing the emotional wounds of shame and guilt that had been inflicted along our life journey. By releasing shame and guilt, we re-open our heart to self-love and self-appreciation once again.
Finally, building self-confidence is not an external exercise to gain someone else's approval, admiration or having the ability to control and overpower another being. The bigger purpose of self-confidence is the ability to trust and empower yourself to choose and create the life experience you prefer.
To end this blog, I will quote my favourite author, Paulo Coelho’s words
"IF YOU WANT TO BE SUCCESSFUL, YOU MUST RESPECT ONE RULE - NEVER LIE TO YOURSELF."
Self-confidence is precisely this enormous courage to upholding and living each day by speaking, thinking and doing what is true to your heart.
Silvia Siow | Emotional Healer & Coach | Certified Emotion Code™ Practitioner
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