How To Build Your Confidence and Understand Your Own Value

When I was in the 4th grade, I use to stand on the playground and wonder my insides didn’t match everyone else’s outside.  My confidence and self-worth were lacking.  I had a stutter. Girls terrified me.  Despite all that, I was searching.  Searching for answers to some of life’s questions.  The one thing I had going for me was a strong sense of humor.  I wasn’t the class clown. That was the guy who would, in high school, run naked across the football field. I was the class wit.  I was the guy who talked the clown into “streaking.”  According to the dictionary, “WIT is a form of intelligent humor, the ability to say or write things that are clever and usually funny. Quips.”  It got me into more than my share of hot water.  I had a regular seat at the principal’s office.

I was able to overcome my lack of confidence by asking questions of people that were really good at a particular discipline.  Monkey Bars, Math, Basketball, Writing, I found mentors at a young age on the playground and in the classroom.  I still ask.  The question that changed my life and direction was WHY?  “Why are you so good at basketball?  What do you do?” I asked Kenny Christensen in 8th grade after I had been cut from the team.  He was the best player in our school, in any grade.  “I practice 2-hours a day and I attend ‘Bob Houbregs Basketball Camp’ on Whidbey Island in the summer.”  So I did too.  I made the team the next year (I grew 9”, that may have affected the coaches decision.)

Here are three questions to change your level of self-confidence, self-worth help you understand your own value.  By themselves, they can make you think, combined they can change your life.

1)  What are your notable accomplishments? (Go back to 1st Grade)

2)  What have you learned from me? (Asking Clients, Friends & Family)

3)  What are you looking forward to over the next five years?

Let’s examine them one at a time.

1)  What are your notable accomplishments?

I learned this question from author and speaker Bill Bartmann.  The first time I did this exercise, it took a few hours.  I began in kindergarten and went up to present day in my journal.  It was a real eye opener for me.  It turned into a resume of WINS.  I had forgotten how much I had achieved over my lifetime.  It was a great reminder of past success and it propelled me into the future with confidence and worth.  What is it about our mind that wants to dwell on our past LOSSES instead of WINS?  Society telling us it’s not okay to feel proud?  Friends or relatives who are threatened by our success, jealousy perhaps?  Pastors or parents not wanting us to be vain or egotistical?  Forget all that.  Make the list.  You will be pleasantly surprised at how it makes you feel.

2)  What have you learned from me?

I borrowed this from comedian, author and speaker Judy Carter.  I asked my youngest son, Evan.  He replied, “Wow, I need to think about that.  There is so much.  Well, the short list: How to be a man.  How to respect your elders. How to be true to yourself, authentic and follow your bliss; to not listen to naysayers and believe in your dreams.”  I asked my former client and close friend Kevin, he said, “Humility and Persistence.”  I asked our adopted son Larod, he replied: “Honesty and Integrity, keeping your word.  Be loyal to others, think of them first.  Be a lifelong learner and goal oriented.”  Every answer surprised me.  Why is it, we have a hard time seeing that in ourselves?

3)  What are you looking forward to the next five years?

This question is one I ask my clients in seminars and keynotes.  I have been asking it of myself since 1990.  In the Old Testament is says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish” -Proverbs 29:18  It’s the job of Leaders to create the vision for the Organization, The Team, The Church, The Family.  BIG Goals give our life meaning and purpose. They give us drive, energy, focus and desire.  According to my research into longevity, 68% of American men are dead within 18 months of retirement.  Women are smarter. They never retire.  Motherhood and Grand-Motherhood plays a big part in this equation. It takes a whole village to raise a child.

So there you have it.  Three great questions to build your confidence and help you understand your own value.  It’s the fastest way to have your insides match your outside.  Now where is that basketball?  Maybe Kenny will play me a game of HORSE!

Tags: , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.