Confidence Is Money

By: martinchandra
Self-confidence is an attitude which allows individuals to have positive yet realistic views of themselves and their situations. Self-confident people trust their own abilities, have a general sense of control in their lives, and believe that, within reason, they will be able to do what they wish, plan, and expect.

Having self-confidence does not mean that individuals will be able to do everything. Self-confident people have expectations that are realistic. Even when some of their expectations are not met, they continue to be positive and to accept themselves.

People who are not self-confident depend excessively on the approval of others in order to feel good about themselves. They tend to avoid taking risks because they fear failure. They generally do not expect to be successful. They often put themselves down and tend to discount or ignore compliments paid to them. By contrast, self-confident people are willing to risk the disapproval of others because they generally trust their own abilities. They tend to accept themselves; they don't feel they have to conform in order to be accepted.

Self-confidence is not necessarily a general characteristic which pervades all aspects of a person's life. Typically, individuals will have some areas of their lives where they feel quite confident, e.g.,academics, athletics, while at the same time they do not feel at all confident in other areas, e.g., personal appearance, social relationships.

There is no greater asset for an entrepreneur than an absolute conviction that you know what you're doing. If you don't feel sure of yourself, why should anyone else trust you?

This is obvious. But for most of us, confidence is something that comes and goes. What's more, it often vanishes unexpectedly, just when you need it most. When I feel confident, everything seems to work better. When I feel insecure, nothing goes right. I become selfconscious. I begin to doubt my own abilities, and mistrust other people as well.

While confidence is useful for everyone, it is particularly vital when you are in business for yourself. When you work for a company, your very position gives you a sense of legitimacy. Entrepreneurs stand on our own, and we mustn't be seen to be quivering in our high heels or wing tips. We demand to be taken seriously. Everything about us should inspire trust.

In his influential book Learned Optimism, psychologist Martin Seligman cites scientific data showing that pessimistic people have a firmer grasp on reality than people with a sunnier outlook. The optimists, however, are likely to be happier, healthier, and more successful. Seligman argues that, for most people, it's worth learning to be optimistic. It's good for you.

Obviously, you can't stay in business if you don't have a grasp on reality, and especially on how things are changing. Yet, it is the nature of the entrepreneurs not to accept reality without a bit of a fight. We are, after all, in business to change the world, not simply to accept things as they are. Our success depends on a good helping of presumptuousness. We are remaking the world to our liking. But we will never succeed unless we are convinced--and unless we appear convinced--that what we are doing will succeed.

Everyone has moments of insecurity. Indeed, many of the stories in this book relate the impact of self-doubt on the lives of independent business people. Confidence is a quality that comes and goes, but, as several of the stories that follow suggest, it is also a discipline that can be learned. And if you can succeed in learning confidence, you will not simply be happier and healthier, but wealthier besides.
Self Improvement and Motivation
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