Are You A Confident Person?

Fionnuala and I are attending Hannah’s annual school review this lunchtime. This does exactly what it says on the tin. We sit around a table and listen as her teacher, classroom assistant, physio and occupational therapist update us as to her progress so far this school year. I know we will have nothing to fear as Hannah is a model student, popular, polite and hard working. We always leave such meetings with smiles on our faces.

It’s also fast approaching the time of year where I am subject to my own annual review at work. This time, the shoe is on the other foot. I sit quivering before my boss as he gives me his thoughts on my performance over the past 12 months. Thankfully, I have a very understanding and accommodating manager and I don’t think I’ve screwed up (too much) during the reporting period.

This year is a little different as there is a promotion opportunity looming on the horizon that I have been encouraged to apply for. On the face of it, this might seem a no brainer. I’m one of the few people within the organisation trained to do the job. It’s a considerable pay hike and people have been telling me for years I am capable of performing the role. And yet, I hold back, reluctant to throw my name in the hat.

There’s the little issue of my lack of self confidence to begin with. I’m my own worst critic and constantly tell myself the promotion boat has sailed. My face doesn’t fit, senior management don’t rate me, I wouldn’t be able to cope with the added pressures and demands of the job. I’m the king of excuses when it comes to such matters, my own worst critic. I don’t just knock myself down. I then check the rear view mirror and then reverse over my inert body, just to be sure.

I’ve been dreading this past week where I’ve held the on call phone. I’m not good enough, I won’t be able to cope, I’m going to make a total mess of a call and be found out. I’m always worried about being found out, shown up for the fraud and charlatan hiding behind the professional and competent front I present to the ever watching world. The same applies to the other hats I wear.

Husband, Father, Christian, Runner, Writer. I’m a big, fat imposter and today is the day I’m going to be found out. Today is the day I’m going to sit in front of those who matter and be told I’ve fluffed my lines and my services are no longer required. Pack up your belongings and hand in your ID card on the way out. Stephen has left the building with his tail well and truly between his legs. Game, set and match to the nagging voice inside my head.

Do you ever feel that way? Where your confidence pours through your fingers like water from a gushing tap. You watch as it trickles down the drain, unwilling and unable to take that step out of your comfort zone. It could be the step that changes your life, one way or the other. There’s only one way to find out and yet you hesitate, you hold back. The self survival mechanism within tells you to stop.

You’re at a crossroads. Which way do you turn? You’re sitting in front of an interview panel. What do you say? Decisions need to be made, yet you sit there floundering, barely able to draw breath, let alone formulate an eloquent answer to the question you have been asked. It’s at times like this you need to draw deep from the well within. Hoping you find deep, refreshing waters of inspiration as opposed to a few inches of stagnant, murky despair.

Are you a confident person?

Have you a big decision looming on the horizon?

How do you combat the nagging voice of doubt?

Published by Fractured Faith Blog

We are Stephen and Fionnuala and this is our story. We live in Northern Ireland, have been married for 15 years and have three kids - Adam, Hannah and Rebecca. We hope that our story will inspire and encourage others. We have walked a rocky road yet here we are today, together and stronger than ever. We are far from perfect and our faith has been battered and bruised. But an untested faith is a pointless faith. Just as a fractured faith is better than none at all. We hope you enjoy the blog.

50 thoughts on “Are You A Confident Person?

  1. It can be hard to trust in ourselves, because we know, first-hand, of our failures, weaknesses and shortcomings. One reason why it is best to not lean on our own understanding, but to trust that the One who started a good work in you will not turn loose until that work is done. Stepping out of our comfort into the new and unknown is scary. But all that you’ve done up until now has helped prepare you. Perhaps for such a time as this. Lace up your shoes and take those first steps. You’ll be glad you did!

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    1. Faith carries us through. I’m pacing up, 😆 and pumping up my sneaker. I don’t know if you remember those sneakers that had the compression on the tongue of the sneakers. I thought hey we’re so cool, like they’d add extra speed. 😆 might be an American thing.

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  2. I am not the most confident either, I used to dread appraisals, like you just waiting for them to find a reason that I wasn’t up to my job. The crazy thing was that I was good at my job and unless I did something monumentally stupid I wasn’t going to be sacked as they needed me (or so I thought). I left as I wasn’t feeling able to stand up for myself and felt I was actually undervalued.
    I counter the thoughts of doubt with the hind sight of “I can do it, my past enables me to do it, I am good and not useless!”

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  3. I feel that exact way sometimes. Funny, how isolating and anxiety provoking those thoughts can be. Self- sabotage! I try to ride it out without sinking too far into those thoughts/feelings. I try to quiet them with rational uplifting self-talk. I think about how if I was so terrible I wouldn’t have all of these wonderful people in my life. And I try to ascertain what is the root of feeling that way. What triggered it. Good luck with the review and the potential promotion.

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  4. Hard questions. I can answer yes and no. Sometimes our inner voice knows. Promotions are not always what they are cracked up to be. If you think you would like to do that job, and if others believe you can, go for it. If it doesn’t work out you can go back. (I had to do that once.). May you find peace as you wrestle with decisions and mental demons.

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  5. I cant’ tell you how many times I’ve pushed forward, waiting for the “other shoe” to fall if “they” really knew me. Over the last few years though, I’ve moved to a place of gratitude for my abilities as a husband, father, activist, and employee. I firmly believe it’s unimportant what I think of me. What’s truly important is what God thinks of me. Given where I came from I know I am blessed and truly grateful. I am a child of the King!

    That being said, no matter how deep my faith I still am plagued by doubt and all to often, self-loathing. It’s just not nearly as bad as it used to be. My self-confidence is more God-confidence today.

    Go for it! Dream big and find you’ll do even bigger. Take care!

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  6. I am the furthest thing from confident that you will ever find. I also tend to cling desperately to what I know is safe and secure versus reaching out and taking a leap of faith. This may have to do with past trauma and the need to feel sure, secure, and safe. I think though that God knows this about me because He will sometimes open opportunities and make it impossible not to go for it. A good example was making me lose my job at a local store so I would be available to take another job in my field of Social Worker. I don’t like change but change is necessary. So all that to say that you should go for it!! You are not a fraud or a fake. You are the genuine article Stephen. After all thousands of people who read this blog can’t be wrong can they 😉

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  7. I wouldn’t say I’m necessarily a confident person, but here’s how I think of things to make it simpler for myself. Everything is moments. Our lives are just made up of a whole bunch of little moments which have weight on the future. Some more than others. If we look at each moment individually, knowing that it won’t last long, it seems so much less stressful. I like to do that and remember that as long as I do what I know is right, God’s got the future in His more than capable hands and I can only see each moment I have one at a time, whereas He can see all of them.
    It’s good to see you are acknowledging your fears and worries! Praying God gives you wisdom friend 🙂

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  8. Totally with you. This week I took a brave, terrifying step towards something big and scary. Still shaking with fear and self doubt! But glad I took the step. You can do this.

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  9. 😀 Oh, man. I’m still snickering about running over your inert confidence in the road. This is all me, too, as you know.

    Since counseling, improving my marriage relationship, and garnering such positive feedback from blogging; I am much, much more confident.

    Thanks! 🙂

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  10. I am not very confident in my communication skills. That is why I am just now responding to your post. Because I overthink what I want to say and then time passes by and I’m like forget it.

    I also lack confidence when it comes to a job interview as I have an ugly past.

    You see my ex had me arrested because I am so hardcore.

    Where I live the job application asks the question have you ever been convicted of a crime in the last seven years. And I can honestly answer no to that.

    However, one application for a government job asks the question have you ever been arrested. And I answered yes and they hired me. But I always worried that maybe they overlooked it by mistake. And whenever I promoted internally they would fingerprint all over again. And I would think this time they are going to see it.

    Then one time they wanted to do an FBI fingerprinting clearance so that I could be licensed and I gave the excuse that I didn’t want the promotion. But really I didn’t want everyone to know what happened.

    I have a different job now. But I have stayed too long at jobs that I didn’t really like because I didn’t want to go through the application process.

    I hope you get your promotion.

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  11. You are not brave? You lack the confidence? You have written a book and in the process of shopping it around to agents. That is not brave? And if you lack confidence would you have sent it out? You need to take the writer belief and share some of it with the worker you. (Sorry I am babbling) I don’t know you from Adam but it sounds as though you are perfect for the job. By the way I lack confidence but I pretend I know what I am doing and well no one looks to closely. LOL 🙂

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  12. Stephen, I’m much the same myself. Always telling other people how good they are. Always building them up, whilst at the same time having no confidence at in my own abilities. My employer goes the extra mile and has monthly feedback sessions for us. Picking calls and emails to critique, telling you where you went right or went wrong. Invariably this does nothing at all for my self-confidence, leaving me frustrated, annoyed, angry etc.

    They have targets and things that must be done, that have no effect at all on customer service. They nit-pick again and again, even whilst I constantly tell them that people are forever telling me how good I’ve been , and – in the 4+ years I’ve been there – no-one has actually complained about me. In fact, quite the opposite.

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  13. We’re all like that. For me, I just have to push through it and do it. If not, then I have to deal with regrets and disappointment. I’d have to pray about it and seek Gods guidance. I am my own worst critic. So I’d have to get out of my own way and run into the next position without giving it a thought. Having people in your circle or family to support you makes a huge difference. So I’d meditate on “Just do it”.

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