“Confidence is a preference for the habitual voyeur of what is known as (parklife)” Blur
Or, as defined by my colleague’s dictionary:
Confidence n: firm trust, faith; belief in one’s own abilities; boldness; something revealed confidentially.
Self-esteem n: confidence and respect for oneself; an exaggerated opinion of oneself.
(I’m not aware of any song lyrics involving self-esteem. If you know of any do let me know.)
I ponder confidence and self-esteem quite a lot as I believe I have bags of the first & none of the second. I always believe, in simplistic terms, that self-confidence is belief in what you can do, whereas self-esteem is belief in who you are.
Now I can do quite a lot of things, including plenty that I know terrify many people, and I will barely lose sleep over them. For example: walk into a room full of strangers & start a conversation? No problem. Go on stage in front of hundreds of people? Ok then. Sashay down a catwalk? Happy days. Incidentally none of these examples relate to my current employment, which also takes balls of steel but more on that another time.
For all that I can do things, I lack any belief in my actual myself. A long time ago, in tentatively broaching this subject with two friends, I described myself as “hideous”. The reply from one was “That’s well harsh, babe.” They then started discussing Eastenders. Unsurprisingly, I retreated from discussing the subject with anyone for several years.
Feeling that you are worthless is a tricky thing for anyone else to comprehend, especially someone who likes you. However, I don’t use words like “worthless” or “hideous” lightly. I use them because if I am truly honest on my view of myself, these are words that come to forefront before any others.
Now I’m well aware this is an unhealthy state of affairs and something that I need to address, which leads me on to why I wrote this in the first place…
What do you do? How do you take a belief in an ability and turn into a belief in the owner of that ability? How do you nurture self-esteem? Answers on a comment box-shaped postcard, please.