The Relationship Between Confidence and Resilience

Build Confidence

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Man often becomes what he believes himself to be. If I keep on saying to myself that I cannot do a certain thing, it is possible that I may end by really becoming incapable of doing it. On the contrary, if I shall have the belief that I can do it, I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it, even if I may not have it at the beginning. ~Mahatma Gandhi

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Confidence is a key characteristic among the highly resilient. Even if they don’t have all the skills and knowledge required to overcome a particular problem, they are confident in their abilities and resourcefulness to acquire what they need.

How Confident Are You Now?

In basic terms, confidence enables us to reach for dreams and tackle life’s challenges with more certainty. Most of us have at least some confidence in ourselves and our abilities, usually more so in some areas than others. For example, you might be highly confident in your professional life, but insecure about your personal relationships, or maybe unexpected change throws you for a loop.

For some people, the greatest drain on their confidence is nothing tangible, but rather include an assortment of doubts, fears and emotional baggage from their past that collectively create resistance. Sometimes the resistance is so great it’s a bit like trying to drive with one foot on the gas and one on the brake, and this can create a lot of unnecessary stress, particularly when we’re struggling to work through an adverse situation or striving to achieve meaningful goals.

You’ve likely heard the saying “You are stronger than you think you are.” This is true because as a general rule, we can never really know what we are capable of until we’re tested. But, if we’re willing to do the work, it’s surprisingly easy to test ourselves and then identify the steps to intentionally increase self-confidence by using the following two strategies.

  1. Identify and do the things that you’re afraid of doing.
  2. Accumulate a list of meaningful accomplishments, for example facing your fears, resolving difficult problems and achieving challenging goals.

But here’s the challenge. The less confident you are about your abilities the less likely you will be to put yourself in a position to test your true capabilities, which means that, like most things in life, doing the work to become more confident will inevitably come down to how badly you want it. So, it may help to take the opportunity now to consider a few of the ways in which building confidence can improve the quality of your life.

The Benefits of Believing in Yourself

Provides Focus

When you are confident in your priorities and abilities you are far more likely to be clear about your standards, set healthy boundaries and reach for more meaningful goals in life.

Increases Adaptability

Believing in yourself and your abilities also serves as a foundation for developing another important resilience characteristic, adaptability. It’s much easier to remain calm and flexible in your approach to problem-solving if you are confident that you can handle whatever challenges may come your way.

Increases Productivity

When you are confident you are far more likely to take necessary action to achieve your desired results rather than waiting for assurance or approval from others. A confident person is not only more likely to risk venturing into unknown territory, they also have the courage to admit when don’t know something because this not only enables them to continue moving forward but opens the door to new knowledge and greater opportunities.

Increases Positivity

To say that some people are skeptical of “positive thinking” would be a major understatement, in fact, there are those that believe optimistic thinking causes more harm that good. Regardless of where you fall in the debate at this point, there is enough solid research to prove that having a sense of empowerment increases one’s positive outlook on life, and this is not only good for your health, it enhances your level of resilience, and makes life more enjoyable.

Improves Your Ability to Manage Adversity

No matter how hard we may try to deny, outrun or sidestep them, unexpected problems of all shapes and sizes are inevitable in life. Many of us will encounter health issues, financial stresses, work worries, or bereavement. But whether we realize it or not, the stress and demands of modern life deliver a daily dose of adversity as we manage overloaded schedules, commitment challenges, difficult conversations and  relationship challenges.

Having confidence in your ability to handle these smaller challenges not only reduces stress and improves your quality of life on a day-to-day basis, it helps to build your tolerance and ability to deal with larger events when and if they should occur. Confidence enhances resilience, and the more resilient you are, the greater your level of confidence.

Self-Confidence

It’s worth emphasizing that as important as believing in yourself is, this belief alone is not sufficient in order to get what you want or achieve your desired outcomes. You still need to take action, persevere, and learn from your experiences, but this is where self-belief comes full circle because when you are confident in your abilities you are far more likely to take action which manifests as resilience and in turn further strengthens self-confidence.

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Emotionally Resilient Living

Always have confidence in your ability to grow with each experience whether good or bad. Don’t be held back by fear of rejection or failure, strive for your goals. Believing in yourself is the key to your success in life. 

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