When you concern yourself with others, you naturally develop a sense of self-confidence. To help others takes courage and inner strength. – Dalai Lama
What does that mean?
This quote has an interesting way of looking at self-confidence. We normally think of self-confidence coming from accomplishing things, things we can see and measure. Ran a mile? Yep! Got your first paycheck? Yep!
Yet, the quote says, there are other things which build self-confidence. In particular, being concerned for others and helping them is mentioned. Those aren’t the typical self-confidence builders, at least not from my culture and experience.
But the quote states that to do these things takes courage and inner strength, and I wholeheartedly agree. It is interesting that these are also the very attributes that are emphasized in the methods with which I am familiar.
And that, I believe, is the point. We know we need self-confidence. We know of people who need a little more. Not everybody likes doing rope work, or some of the trendy team-building methods. Everyone can do this, and I hope everyone will do at least a little bit.
Why is building self-confidence important?
We can’t really help others if we can’t help ourselves. First we have to have some confidence in ourselves and our abilities. We have to prove to ourselves that we can do things, we can be useful, we can help.
There are many ways to build self-confidence. I’m no expert at that. However, I have seen plenty which rely on physical prowess to provide the participant with confidence. But there are other ways.
Does a confident cook need to be able to complete a ropes course? Does a confident nurse or doctor need to be able to walk across a log suspended ten or more feet in the air? There are other ways. Professionals tend to get self-confidence from their job performance.
But what about outside the job? You can be a skilled brain surgeon, but not that confident in other areas of your life, right? This quote allows us to become confident in ourselves by doing simple things. Things anyone can do, if they so choose.
Where can I apply this in my life?
I’m not very good at developing self-confidence in others. I can do a fairly good job of keeping my own confidence, but I’m not that sure how to inspire it in others. That said, I know what has worked for me.
From my experience, the biggest killer of self-confidence is the definition of failure they carry with them. If anything less than a dazzling success is considered a failure, they’re going to have a hard time ever feeling confident with themselves, or they will never dare to think big.
Conversely, those who view everything as a result, neither a success or failure, tend to do a little better. Even what most would call a disaster can be a learning moment, and therefore, a success of some sort. Every result can be built on. Nearly every major city in Europe is built on the rubble of a prior city. Learn, and build again.
I’m not the greatest cook, but I can do it. I learned a lot from the inedible results I have generated over the years. I lack the confidence to even try to create a fancy meal, but I most certainly won’t starve to death either. However, if each burned meal was the end of the world, I’d have a different outlook, right?
When we try to help others, when we concern ourselves with their lives and what we can do to provide assistance, we are showing ourselves our inner strength and our courage. It’s easy to walk past, and do nothing. It takes courage to face them and acknowledge their situation. It takes a great deal of inner strength to reach out and help them.
Think back through your life to the times when you helped someone else. It needn’t be a homeless person or something like that. Even something as simple as offering to help someone get their car started with jumper cables, or to pick up something they dropped. How did you feel afterwards?
Belief in ourselves, in our ability to help others, that can be a great help in developing our confidence. Yeah, I can’t make a soufflé, but I can help others with their computers and their cars. That’s gotta count for something, right?
We all have the capacity to be concerned and to help. If you’re worried that talking to a stranger is a big step, perhaps your first act of concern and compassion should be with yourself. After all, you’re important too.
- Confidence tricks (wordsmithsuk.wordpress.com)
- 3 Techniques to Boost Your Confidence (psychcentral.com)
- The Power of Self-confidence. (ejims05.wordpress.com)
- Boost Your Confidence Today (massageenvy.com)