Can You Choose to Be Confident? (Yes! Here's How.)

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March 05, 2015

For the longest time, I thought confidence was just something that happened naturally when you were good at things or pretty or well-liked. I thought it was a feeling that sometimes you had, and sometimes you didn't, and that's all there is to it.

The older I get, the more I am starting to think that yes, confidence comes naturally sometimes, and other times it just doesn't...but that maybe we can choose to be confident. I read something the other day that said that our confidence is also our "self-efficacy" which is just a fancy sounding phrase for how strongly we believe we are capable of achieving things--whether that's in work, relationships or anything else.

Choosing to be confident isn't just telling ourselves to buck up every morning and be self-assured. But there are certain things in our life that affect our confidence. According to this article, there are four different places that we get our confidence. The first one is one that we can't control--it's how often other people tell us that we are succeeding. But the other three, we totally can control:

1. "Developing mastery experiences"--which means experience working hard at things and seeing a good result.
2. "Vicarious experiences"--this is when we see other 'normal' people like us succeeding at things.
3. "Emotional status"--how well we manage negative self-talk, stress, etc.

According to this article, we can seriously change these three things and our life--and so we can change how confident we are. I'm not sold on it for sure, but I think it's such an interesting concept that we may be able to choose to be more confident people.

What do you think?
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