Be. U. TY Podcast is Here! The podcast that will help you unveil your authentic self so you can show the world who you are confidently. In today’s episode, our host Adozie Duffy talks about confidence. Confidence is a skill that we can practice and develop and get good at.
“ Confidence doesn’t just appear out of thin air and it isn’t a personality trait. This is a concept so many of us have wrong. It’s a skill that you can practice & develop and get good at.”
“ We are waiting for someone else to give us the okay to believe in ourselves and in doing this, we are simultaneously creating the exact opposite effect in our lives.”
“You have to allow yourself the chance to start feeling confident about it before you even become a master of it.”
“Confidence is a process. It is not a given.”
What to watch for:
1:25 – What do we usually think about confidence?
4:15 – Insecurities
6:31 – Our wrong approach when it comes to gaining more confidence.
9:37 – We need to approach confidence differently.
11:08 – Confidence comes from what we chose to believe in.
14:00 – Confidence is a process.
24:53 – Being unconfident or choosing to follow your desires anyways, is the quickest way to start building confidence in yourself.
Connect with Adozie
So I just wanted to come on here and have a brief little chit chat with you. Today’s topic is all about confidence.
When it comes to confidence, there are so many of us that believe we are lacking in it. We see it as this thing we are missing in our life & if we just had little more of it or if we just had it at all, then most of our problems would be solved.
We spend a lot of time daydreaming about what it would be like to have the confidence to do the things that we want. We think confidence is just something you’re either born with or your not. & some people are just luckier than others to fit more into society’s standards & because of this they are gifted with the capability of having far more confidence than the rest of us.
We look at Instagram models & they’re sexy posts. & we tell ourselves that the reason these women have confidence in the first place is because of how they look, & if we looked like that too yeah duh it would be easy to do something like that. You know if I looked like a model of course I would have the confidence to post a picture like that.
Or maybe someone you know is always dressing however they want, no matter what the occasion. In these moments maybe you attribute this to the woman’s size. & think well yeah, if I was a size 2 I also would be able to wear whatever I wanted and be as dressed up & over the top as I wanted too.
You tell yourself that you yourself can’t do these things because you’re not X, Y or Z yet. Or maybe you think you never will be. & you tell yourself that if you want to feel that level of confidence, it can’t be until you reach another goal first. Like losing weight, or learning how to do your makeup the right way.
& this doesn’t just happen with appearances & beauty standards. We do it with our work & home lives as well. We tell ourselves that we have to gain one more year of experience before you go out for that job you want. Or that you have to have to re-do your living room space before you can invite your friends around to hang out in it.
There is no limit to what area of life our brains will tell us that we have to do something on the outside, in order for us to feel confident & secure enough on the inside to make something we desire, worth doing.
But I’m telling you right now, confidence doesn’t just appear out of thin air. & it isn’t a personality trait. This is a concept so many of us have wrong. It’s a skill. A skill that you can practice & develop and get good at.
It’s easy to look at someone’s life from the outside & just assume that they have it all figured out. Or that they’re just lucky. Or that things for them are easy. But I’m telling you, every single person has insecurities and areas of their life that they wish were different or wished that they felt better about. Just because someone has something that you wish you had, doesn’t mean that they feel whole & complete just because they have it. Our brains like to choose something about ourselves & fixate on it, & act as though everything in our life would be perfect if we just had that one thing. Longer hair, smaller thighs, a better laugh, funnier jokes, more money, prince Harry. & the list goes on & on. But I’m telling you, even if all the conditions were exactly as you imagined them to be in your wildest dreams, you would just make up new targets for yourself. You would just come up with new things about yourself to fix, or that could be better, or that would make you feel better.
It’s always a moving target, no matter where you are in life. No matter what advantages you think someone else has over you. We all experience life. Which means we all experience the good and the bad. We all experience happiness & sadness. There is no happy that someone else can experience that you don’t also have access to. & there is no sadness that you experience that even the richest, skinniest, coolest, funniest, smartest, bravest person can’t experience. We are all humans on this earth. We all experience hurt & joy. There are both, no matter what your status in life is.
& this may be a hard concept to wrap your head around because we are conditioned to believe that the road to happiness is through beauty, success, money & accolades. But the reality of life is that even if you have all of those things you can still be an unsatisfied human being. & we know this is true because we see it all the time in Hollywood. We see stars who live out these tragic lives even though they had all of those things that we’ve been conditioned so long to believe are the best things life has to offer.
A lot of us are taking the exact wrong approach when it comes to gaining more confidence. We believe that in order to up our confidence we need proof in our lives first. If we want to feel more confident about our looks, then we have to lose the pounds first. If we want to feel more confident in our writing capabilities then we have to have a book deal first. If we want to feel more confident at public speaking we have to be told that we are good enough to do it in front of a crowd of 500 people. We spend a lot of energy waiting to be the best at something before we allow ourselves to feel good about it. Which is really at the core, what confidence is. Us, feeling secure in something we do or in a way that we are as a person.
But most of us think confidence has to come from the outside in. That we have to have the validation & the sources first to then allow ourselves to think something about us is up to par & worthy of us feeling good about it. We have to believe other people think we are pretty to feel confident in our looks. We have to think other people think we are well-spoken in order to feel confident about our public speaking. We have to think other people think we are a good mom in order to be confident in our parenting*. All of the ways we look to gain confidence as an adult come from the outside. They come from other people’s input & beliefs about us, & most of all they come from validation.
We think we can’t be confident in our work unless we directly get positive feedback from our boss. We think we can’t be confident about our style unless other people are complimenting our clothes. We think we can’t be confident Spanish speaker unless a native speaker cosigns us.
We leave a lot, if not all, of our confidence in the hands of someone else. We are waiting for someone else to give us the okay to believe in ourselves. & in doing this, we are simultaneously creating the exact opposite effect in our life.
How do you think this makes us show up? It leads us to be insecure even before we’re aware of if we’re even good or bad at something. Because we lead first with ‘well how do they think I’m doing?’ which is never the approach of an actual confident person. So even from the get, we are in a losing position. We are showing up insecurely about something & hoping that someone else’s confidence in us is enough to make us confident ourselves too. & that is why we always need more. That’s why we need more positive feedback, more compliments, more reassurance. Because even by the time someone is telling us, we don’t really believe it, because even though we’ve been showing up & doing what we think we’re supposed to, we’ve been doing it hesitantly & we’ve been second-guessing ourselves the whole way through.
How are you supposed to sustain confidence if you’re always waiting for someone else’s stamp of approval?
This is where we need to approach confidence differently. It is not about waiting until you are amazing at something to allow yourself to feel good & secure about doing it. You have to allow yourself the chance to start feeling confident about it before you even become a master of it. Just think about it, how many drop-dead gorgeous girls do you know that don’t even think that they’re pretty? How many amazing singers do you know that think they’re just okay? How many bomb moms do you know that think they are failing?
How can this be if confidence only comes from being amazing at something? That’s because Actually being good at something, doesn’t play as big of a role in having confidence as you think it does. Because there are plenty of people that definitely should feel confident in particular areas of their life that just flat out don’t. (and honestly, I’m sure we all know some people who have no business feeling confident about something but somehow manage to have loads of it, go figure) This is the case because, the confidence exists or doesn’t exist solely because of what someone thinks about themselves. period. There is no official confidence office that mails anyone a certificate, or a window at your local government office that is validating confidence tickets. It’s literally someone either thinks they’re the shit at something, or they don’t. Regardless of the ‘objective’ nature of their skills or appearance*.
But let me be very clear. You are assuming wrong. The confidence of these people around you, did not come from the thing itself. It came from what they chose to believe about that thing. So for example, if someone is beautiful by society’s standards, they may have grown up being told that all the time. So they internalized what was said to them, & they too agreed & took on those thoughts themselves & felt “yeah you’re right, I am beautiful” so they put themselves into situations that people who believe they are beautiful would. Like idk being a model, or walking up & hitting on a person at a bar, or just a number of scenarios. It doesn’t mean that they’ve never been rejected in their life. It’s just that their belief about their beauty is stronger than this one incident of failure. Probably because they’ve had a lot of time & practice thinking that they are beautiful. & we know that that’s all subjective right? Like beauty in a city in Georgia is completely different than beauty in Los Angeles. But it’s the fact that that person got a head start about thinking the thoughts that they were beautiful that gave them the opportunity to be seen that way.
But this doesn’t just apply to pretty people. For example, imagine if you were a kid who was really good in school. You got a’s, and your teachers always told you how smart you were. So because of what you were told, & because of your good grades, you internalized this notion about yourself being smart. & you believed them, & you decided “yeah, I am smart” & so you grew up your whole life believing that fact about yourself & so you put yourself in positions that smart people would. Like idk you joined the debate team, & you went to these competitions & even if your team lost, you didn’t make it mean you weren’t smart anymore, because of this one incident of rejection. Because your thoughts and beliefs about your smartness were stronger than the incident. & the only reason your thoughts were stronger was because you had a lot of time practicing & believing them.
But in reality, think back to the teachers & the grades, as an adult we know all of that stuff is subjective. Like an A in a high school in the middle of a small town in Minnesota, is going to look entirely different than an A from a prestigious private school in New York. Neither of those A’s can objectively say anything about someone because it’s all relative. But that A, & that thought built the same level of confidence in the individual, & that’s all that matters. & so that person lives their life doing what smart people would do & putting themselves out there in ways that smart people would. & trying & failing at things & slowly improving their confidence more & more over time because of the places they are willing to put themselves. They were not just born with this confidence, it was cultivated. But a lot of times that process gets hidden because maybe it happens when someone is young.
But this process is true for every kind of person, in every kind of area. Like athletics, or singing, or public speaking, or making money.
The point being, in any scenario, confidence is a process, it is not a given. Because even the best experience dips in their confidence from time to time.
*and it’s not because of anything but what they are telling themselves about it.
It is such a shame that so many women hold themselves back & hide because they are waiting to become better to give them the confidence they need to put themselves out there. & what’s so messed up* about the whole thing is that that time never comes. Because the target is always moving. Because someone who doesn’t feel confident in themselves doesn’t just magically change their mind once they hit an arbitrary goal they set for themselves. The people who end up feeling the most confident, are the people who put themselves out there well before they feel ready or good enough. Because just the act of showing up for yourself in an uncomfortable or scary situation helps you realize that it isn’t going to feel amazing to go for the things you want. & that’s okay, & it’s still worth doing. That going for the things we want in life actually feels scary & sort of bad most of the way through.
But we create this fantasy in our head that the indicator of if we’re good enough to do something or not is that we are going to feel ‘ready’. That we are going to feel confident & that is what’s going to lead us to make the thing we desire a reality. When in actuality, the people that you think are just so confident, are usually shitting their pants right up until the moment they actually do something, or sometimes not even until after it’s over.
But I’ll be honest, if you put yourself in a situation that you already know you’re unconfident in, what it’s going to do is show you how it’s not that bad. It might not have you leaving a situation feeling 100% differently, but what it will do is start to give you the confidence that you can show up & try & that you’re still standing, you’re still alive & that you were able to do something even when it felt scary to you. & doing this over & over again is what is going to help you, little by little, build confidence in yourself. It’s going to help you value what it takes to just show up in the first place, & you’re going to be able to give yourself the credit you deserve when you do hard things.
That is really just the biggest first step. It’s understanding that you aren’t going to feel amazing when you are going after the things that are most important to you. It’s going to feel hard and clunky & it’s going to feel bad at first. But that’s what makes life interesting. Is trying these things that scare us, just to see if we can. & allowing ourselves to make mistakes on the way, & learning not to make those mistakes mean anything about us besides that we are going to try it again next time, but maybe a little bit differently.
The huge misconception people have about confidence is that they think it is the only thing standing in their way of getting that thing that they want. But I’m telling you as someone who has put myself out there in all kinds of different ways. Like literally stripping down to pasties in from of an audience of 100s of people, I always feel so nervous right before I go on stage. Even though I feel confident, or prepared in my abilities to put on a good show, I don’t just magically get to live above the human experience. I feel both! The reason I feel so accomplished when I get off stage is directly because I felt so scared & unsure in the first place. If I didn’t I would be bored of performing & have to go find something else that got me feeling all scared & tingly. Let me say that again. You don’t get to feel the feeling of accomplishment if you didn’t have the doubts in the first place. If you weren’t unsure, then it would be just like any other mundane task you do, like going to the grocery store or mailing an envelope. High stakes = high satisfaction. Thems is the rules.
So instead of seeing you’re insecurities as a sign of weakness, or as a legitimate excuse not to try. Try to use them as a guide to see what is important to you in life. & see if you are able to start shifting your perspective ahead of time. Try to see if you can start thinking a little differently about the world around you now. Knowing that everyone has parts of themselves that they don’t feel great about, & know that part of being a human being is feeling a sense of fear & insecurity when trying something new, or putting yourself out there in a way that you know could lend itself to judgement. Don’t see that as an indication that you should stop. See it as part of the process. Know that ½ the time it’s not going to feel great, & that’s okay. That actually means you’re doing it right.
& when you approach things like this, you can see that confidence will begin to grow naturally. Because the things keeping you from being confident are mostly just irrational fears that your brain brings up & suddenly makes you aware of as a means to scare you back into the house. But when these come up, if you can learn to just lovingly divert your attention to the fact that you are doing the damn thing, & even if it’s not perfect, that’s a reason to be proud. That you are intentionally doing something hard, & you deserve the credit for that.
& for each one of us, this is going to be in completely different parts of our lives, right? Just because you don’t have the confidence now, doesn’t mean you can’t gain it. & in order to gain the confidence, you have to do the opposite of what your brain wants you to do. You have to start doing now. Even though you’re doing it badly, that is the way you’re going to gain the confidence, is by doing. By writing and publishing that blog post even though you don’t think it’s your best work. By going on that date even though you’re incredibly nervous. By going to the gym even though you feel like everyone’s going to be staring at you.
Feeling unconfident, but choosing to follow your desires anyways, is the quickest way to start building confidence in yourself & what is possible for you. Because you are going to be so surprised by what you can actually do when you stop believing everything you’re caveman* brain is telling you, & you start doing the things that scare you just because you can.
You have this one life. Don’t let unproven statements your brain is randomly shouting at you keep you from getting the things you want. You don’t have to be the best to have the same level of confidence as those that are the best do. There is no feeling that is reserved for just a certain type of person. All feelings are available to every one of us. Because remember, those feelings just come from the thoughts that we think. So what thoughts are you going to choose to start thinking now to give you the chance to create the confidence you’re yearning for in your life?
That’s everything I have for you today girlies, I hope you give this a bit of thought & get curious with yourself about what is really important to you, that you are waiting to start.
Making confidence podcast/ worksheet?
& all of us, & i mean every single one of us is confident in some form or another. Maybe you’re confident at work, but when it comes to your dating life you feel way out of your comfort zone*. Maybe you’re confident at dancing, but when it comes to speaking you feel like you get tongue-tied. Maybe you’re confident at hiking but when it comes to writing a novel you’re not even sure how it’s possible that anyone in the world knows how to do it. We all have some part of our life that we feel confident. Some part, it could literally be in anything. & I’m not even saying we’re all talented at something, I’m saying we all feel secure & confident in some aspect of our personality, or our skillset, even if it’s in our ability to watch tv without having to get up to pee. Idk lol,
The point I’m trying to make, is that we can learn to utilize the confidence we have in one area & transfer it to another area that we feel aspirational about. Something about ourselves that we’re not currently feeling so hot about that we wish we could. & the difference with this is that we aren’t just going to wish & dream & hope that one day we become confident, we are going to develop it. We are going to make a conscious effort to become more confident, and not see it as something you either have or you don’t.
We would go out for that job we really wanted, or we would walk into a bar & have all the men flocking to us. Maybe even we would just stand up for ourselves more to our family, or maybe we would just all around feel better about who we are as people.
& I do think that this is true to an extent. I do think having more confidence in life is a huge way to feel more secure in who we are, & help us take more actions that are in line with who we are trying to become.