Did you know that by the time we become 7 years old our beliefs are instilled?
We believe all the things that our parents, teachers, friends, family, peer group, media and religion tell us. In fact, from anyone who every exerted and still exerts, any influence over us.
Beliefs are formed in childhood and during adolescence.
The magic of Christmas remains magical until we become 10 or 11 years old when we then start to questions whether Father Christmas is real. You will hear children of this age ask
“How can 1 person fly all around the world in 1 night and deliver presents to all those children?”
As human beings, we can train our brains to believe anything that we want to believe. Some of these thoughts will be positive and empowering whilst others will be negative and soul destroying, in many cases leading to poor mental health and wellbeing.
Our beliefs will have a positive or negative impact on our self esteem and confidence so it’s important to exercise your brain to stay fit and healthy in the same way that we would train at a gym to keep our bodies fit and healthy.
The dictionary definition says a belief is, “A principle accepted as true or real without proof. An opinion, a conviction”. The American personal development expert, Anthony Robbins, maintains that “the most important opinion a person will ever hold is the one that they hold about themselves”.
Think back to your own childhood.
How was your behaviour affected by what someone else said about you? Perhaps a cutting remark from a teacher or friend such as “What a stupid question or answer!” made you think twice about raising your hand again in class, for fear of ridicule and humiliation.
These cutting remarks impact on your self esteem and confidence.
Can you remember any strong beliefs that you formed about yourself or your situation?
It’s likely that those beliefs still influence your behaviour today. If you received positive encouragement from all those around you, you will have the foundation of good, healthy and positive self beliefs. If you were subject to criticism, ridicule or blame, either real or perceived, then your belief pattern will be more negative and disempowering. Your initial self image originated from your reaction to the attitudes that other people had towards you. This will have either a positive or negative impact on your self esteem and confidence.
By adulthood, self image is a collection of all the lifetime attitudes and opinions that have been received from others. Self image creates the belief of who or what you are.
What is Confidence?
Confidence comes from accomplishment and belief in capabilities. Confidence is all about recognising risks and taking action in spite of them. Confidence is the ability to evaluate current skills, focus on the outcome and then take calculated actions. Goals and successful achievement of them affect confidence which in turn can improve self belief and esteem.
Nathanial Brandon says someone has confidence when they say “I can handle this; I know that I can cope with life”. It’s the feeling of being worthy and having self respect, having the right to be successful, achieving values and enjoying fruits of efforts.
What is Self Esteem?
Self esteem is internal, it’s what you feel. It can’t be predicted by level of success, it’s linked to personal qualities, it’s others appraisal of us. Our positive mind chatter increases our self esteem through pleasure and pride in our achievements, it empowers, energises and motivates us.
People with good self esteem are unaware of it, are less emotional and more effective in personal and professional lives and their attention is directed outwards away from themselves.
If you have low self esteem the likelihood is, you will be lacking in confidence. It’s important to remember that someone could be faking it until they make it and on the outside, appear confident because they are changing their beliefs from limiting to empowering, but whilst going through the change is uncomfortable and creating internal feelings which is impacting on their self esteem.
Think about a situation where you need to appear confident, to secure a promotion or a new contract for example, you must face that situation with confidence and believe the outcome will be good. In these situations, you may employ a coach to help you achieve your goal and work on your personal beliefs to empower you through raising your self esteem and confidence.
I work with people to help them dream about the life they want, believe in their confidence to make it happen to achieve their goals. If you have a dream and your beliefs and confidence are holding you back, then I would love to be part of your journey.
Claire Cahill, Accendo Coaching & Training
Claire is a member of the Woman Who Achieves Academy