The Get Your Confidence Back Challenge

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Lesson

Day 3. Why Do We Lose Our Confidence?

There’re a million reasons why we lose our confidence.

The problem is, there are many triggers we’ve picked up over the years. What you need to remember here is some of these things might cause you to lose confidence completely while others don’t bother you at all.

For example, for some people, a critical comment can destroy a day, or in some cases, might cause them to quit what they’re doing entirely. In other people, a critical comment rolls right off without leaving a mark.

Neither reaction is wrong, it’s just how we’re wired.

Despite everyone being different, there are some general causes that can often be pinpointed. These causes may not be true for you, but we are at least hoping to get you thinking about what may have caused your loss of confidence in today’s material.

Day 3:

In today’s lesson, we’ll be exploring some general situations or occurrences which may help to bring one’s confidence down.

Common Confidence-Blasting Situations:

The Authority Figure

If you’ve ever been told you’ll never be good enough, you know this one already.

Whether a parent, a teacher, or someone else in authority, living with this kind of constant barrage can put up a block in your confidence and is going to take some serious work to remove.

Even worse is when your authority figures aren’t on the same page. For example, if your parents frequently fought about you, it’s no wonder you’ve got some conflicting messages going on.

The impact on your confidence? You’ll likely struggle with feelings of not being good enough.

You also might have a healthy dose of fear in there regarding the feeling of not being able to hold onto love in relationships or being a ‘curse’ to others.

The Caregiver (Absent)

Not every authority figure is harsh or critical. This is why we’re going to call the next set of figures ‘the caregivers.’

These are the people who mean well, but either through being absent in your life, or always preoccupied, have left you with the feeling you’re not worth loving, or that you’re not good enough to be worthy of attention.

This is also where you might wind up being apologetic all the time. Also, you might not have confidence emotionally, so you don’t know how to express or even define what you’re feeling.

Eventually, this can lead to feeling like you don’t need anyone at all.

The Caregiver (Overly Present)

By contrast, the caregiver who is smothering in their attention can cause a whole different set of problems.

Confidence might be shaky because you’ve never been given a chance to try new things or have been told you’re likely to fail (or get hurt) and therefore, you get the feeling you need to be ‘protected’ from even yourself. This is where it becomes difficult to take risks, or you stress about the world because you don’t understand it fully.

The Bully

Whether your parents or the authority figures in your life were supportive or not in a bullying situation, the experience can leave a mark.

You might shy away from being yourself or being able to stand out in case this makes you a target.

Eventually, you might even shy away from social situations because you’re not confident about how to handle yourself should someone bully you again.

Even in the world where you were supported, you might find confidence in your own abilities to be eroded, as you were unable to solve the problem for yourself.

Academic Issues

When you struggle in school as a child, it’s not uncommon to lack confidence in anything regarding intellect as an adult.

This is especially difficult if the problems went undiagnosed, or you didn’t have reliable support in finding strategies to work with the issues you faced.

Trauma

Anytime you go through something extreme, it’s going to leave a mark. A violent accident, an assault or abuse, anything causing PTSD, can leave your confidence in tatters through no fault of your own.

The critical thing to remember here is that this kind of causation will take time to work through. The effects are also pervasive. Some create triggers particular to the event (like lacking the confidence to drive after a bad car accident) while others are broad (such as difficulty sleeping after the traumatic event).

The point here is to recognize that the effects are also widespread, affecting confidence in everything from not trusting your own defence system to keep you safe, or feeling like your judgment can’t be trusted because you put yourself into a dangerous situation (whether this is true or not).

Your Belief System

Sometimes something as simple as your religion or another belief system can set up the confidence to fail.

For example, you start worrying whether you’re ‘good enough’ because your actions might be at odds with what you believe. This can be tricky because you’re frequently allowing the judgment of others to define what makes you a true devotee of whatever you believe.

The problem comes in especially when this trust is misplaced. For example, you might have accepted the practices of a particular religious institution since birth, but as an adult, you’ve come to realize your sexual preference is not in keeping with the beliefs of that religious body.

This can lead to some complicated feelings regarding how you see yourself.

The World

Media, your social network, and even your peer group are all ready to cast judgments on how you act, work, and live.

With so many mixed messages, it’s not hard to imagine how your confidence can feel battered, especially when those messages might be opposed to you on a very visceral level. With so much against us, it’s no wonder we have problems with confidence.

Especially when it seems the problem is anything around you, from losing your job to burning last night’s dinner.

This is why it’s so important to recognize where the issues are, so you can move on.

Now, let’s take some time to dig into what specifically may have triggered your loss of confidence.


Day 3 Exercise: Causes of a Decrease in Confidence

Just as confidence can manifest itself in different ways for everyone, a lack of confidence may be inspired differently for everyone.

It's a lot deeper than you may think it is! Low confidence levels can have many causes dating back to your childhood, as we spoke about in today’s lesson.

However, the question is, how did you lose your confidence?

Did you relate to the possible causes outlined in Lesson 3?

These are the ideas that we will be exploring in today’s exercises.

Step 1: How was your relationship with your childhood caregiver?

Did you feel as if it was similar to any of those listed in Lesson 3?

If so, write below which one you thought was the most accurate to you, why you think this and how it has affected you and your confidence.

If not, explain what your childhood caregiver was like and how they affected your confidence in the long run.

Write Your Ideas Here:




Step 2: What was your experience with school like as a child? How would you describe it?

Below, list 5 adjectives to describe this part of your life.

·       Adjective 1:


·       Adjective 2:


·       Adjective 3:


·       Adjective 4:


·       Adjective 5:


Step 3: Overall, what do you think caused your loss of confidence? Using what you read in Lesson 3 and your own opinions, brainstorm your ideas below.

Brainstorm Your Ideas Here: