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Confidence and Self-Perception


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One of my friends constantly repeats this famous Marcus Garvey quote to me whenever I begin to wallow in self-pity. It portrays a very powerful message that I'm only now beginning to embrace. If suffering from a severe lack of confidence was a recognized psychological condition, I would be diagnosed with it. Lacking self-confidence only produces defeat and causes you to see every challenge as an insurmountable obstacle. Don't get it twisted though. Having confidence doesn't mean being narcissistic or full of too much pride. Confidence requires having a healthy view of one's self and abilities while humbly accepting the fact that there will always be others out there who are better than you. So, how can someone who has a negative self-image develop this healthy sense of confidence? This is a question that I constantly ask myself and I think I have finally discovered some possible answers.

Find What You Love

There is something magical about finding something that you're truly passionate about. I have found that I truly enjoy writing and I function at my best when I am sitting in front of my laptop pouring my thoughts onto the computer screen. When you realize that something really comes to you naturally, you begin to truly believe that you have something to offer to the world. Finding a passion is more difficult for some people than others. However, it isn't impossible. Keep dabbling in things that interest you and one day you'll truly discover what really makes your heart sing.

Constantly Look for Learning Opportunities

Oftentimes the areas where we lack confidence are the areas where we have the most inadequacies. It's easy to be confident in something you're naturally gifted at, but it's much harder to feel that same level of confidence in something you feel you lack the ability to do. I fervently believe that each of us can do anything that we set out minds to. I know the areas in which I feel most inadequate and I have decided that, instead of lamenting on how incapable I feel, I am going to constantly look for advice from those who are gifted in the area and do my own research. Once I do these things and implement what I've learnt, I am sure improvement will follow.

Believe in Yourself

No one else is going to feel as strongly about your dreams as you do. You are the master of your happiness and emotions. It is amazing how simply saying the words "I can" with great conviction can change the way you perceive and act on things. The word can't should not be in your vocabulary. Believe in the beautiful person you are and have the potential to become.

Don't be defeated by your lack of confidence. Make a decision today to truly believe in who you are so that you can move forward into your destiny.



Creating Your Own Happiness

lklklk The past few months have been difficult for me. In this small time frame I have felt more like a failure than any other time in my life (and there have been several times in my life when I've felt like a failure). Every aspect of my life has EPIC FAIL written all over it- my lackluster love life, my career, and my spirituality. My friends keep telling me that I'm an over-thinker, I'm not aggressive enough, I'm not observant enough, I need to let loose. You know what, they're right. I am not enough. However, there is one thing that I have come to realize. I am in charge of my own happiness. I can't control my fate or the outcomes of my actions, but I can control my attitude and my happiness.

This morning I came up with four keys to happiness. I want to start using these keys to open doors to a better a more fulfilling life. Maybe this strategy will work, maybe it won't. At least I would know that I've tried.

Key #1: Let Go

In order to move forward you have to let go of the hurt of the past. I know that I will be perpetually unhappy if I keep holding on to bad memories and constant hurt. There comes a time when we all just have to shake the dust off, forgive, forget, and move on. The others who have harmed you have already moved on so what are you really holding on to?

Key #2: Discover Yourself

Because of how I was raised I don't think I had the opportunity to fully discover who I am and what I really want out of life. Granted, I was raised well by my beautiful mother who taught me strong values and principles. However, I think I've gotten to a point in my life where I don't want to feel like I have to be afraid to explore and learn more about me. I have lived under an umbrella of people's expectations. Those expectations are meaningless to me now. Now, I want to come from under the umbrella and feel the beauty of the rain.

Key #3: Realize that No one Else Can Make You Happy But You

If we depend on other people to make us happy then we will continuously be disappointed. People will always disappoint us simply because they are imperfect beings. However, when you know what you enjoy doing then you can just go out and do it. If you enjoy karaoke, why not treat yourself to a karaoke evening? If you enjoy going to the beach, why don't you drive there one evening and enjoy the beautiful sand and surf? When you enjoy your own company and truly understand who you are, you attract and exude happiness.

Key #4: Finding Love Isn't Necessarily the Answer

Some of us accept the notion that finding our soul mates will answer our happiness issues. That's a lie. If you can't be happy on your own, how do you expect someone else to make you happy? Also, as I said in key #3, we can't depend on others to make us happy because we will continuously be disappointed. Love has its limits. There is hardly any human being who would go out of his or her way to keep a perpetually depressed person happy. In all honesty, perpetually depressed people are a pain to be around and hard to commit to. Don't be one of those people.



Self Pity

kkkk It is so easy to become consumed by the troubles and concerns of your own life. This is especially true when you begin to compare yourself with others. More often than not I find myself wondering why I can't find a partner and be happy like my friends. I also often wonder why I can't reach a place of financial stability where I don't have to think very carefully about spending money to enjoy the simple things in life. I'm constantly battling with feelings of inadequacy and often deem myself to not be good enough. What I have come to realise, however, is that self pity gets you nowhere. Overcoming self pity is not a simple task. Nevertheless, I've come up with three simple tricks that you can use to free yourself from this negative attribute.

Stop Comparing

Self pity often begins when we start to compare ourselves to others. You were made the way you are for a reason. Your skills and abilities are valuable to someone in this world. The aim isn't to be perfect; it is to be proud of who you are and become the best you can be. You'd be surprised by how working humbly in your own corner can help you to gain respect of your superiors. Work hard doing what you know you can do. Over time you will begin to improve your skills and even develop other useful skills if you maintain this focus. You may even get a promotion that you may have been overlooked for had you remained bitter about not being like someone else.

Think Positively

In the first chapter of my book Becoming the Best You: Ten Pressure Points that Lead to a Successful Life, I discuss the power of positive thinking. Positive thoughts lead to positive actions. Have you ever observed extremely positive people who are happy about life? Their optimism is contagious and they're a joy to be around.  They also receive more opportunities than the average person. Change your perspective on life and you will begin to see a dramatic change.

You Aren't the Only One With Problems

Regardless of the number of problems you think you have there are several other people in the world who have far more problems than you. Yes, you may have too many bills to pay or your house may be falling apart, but there is someone out there with no job and no home. Focus your energy on trying to find solutions to your problems instead of dwelling on the fact that you have problems. Also, look for ways to do good for others. The more you give is the more grateful you'll be for the little you have.


Use these tips to help you break free from the shackles of self pity. Life is short and you shouldn't spend it wallowing in negative feelings.



You Are Never Alone

lonely person In this complex and hectic world it is so easy to get easy to feel like you're alone. Loneliness forces us to enter into the wrong relationships, develop a negative self image, and can lead to depression. So, if we know all of the negative consequences of loneliness, why do we allow our minds to encourage it? Regardless of the reasons we allow loneliness to take over our lives, I believe that the following tips can help all of us to realise that we truly are never alone.

Become Time Efficient

Not everyone in the world can be outgoing and surrounded by a multitude of friends. Some of us are more reclusive and have a harder time creating genuine friendships. This often results in us having many hours and days to ourselves. However, what do we do with that time? Do we over think, worry and allow negative thoughts to flood our brains? Or do we use that time to think of what we can do to bring more joy and happiness into our lives? Use your time alone to develop useful skills, read a good novel, watch a good movie, find some freelance jobs, or plan a vacation with your friends or family. Don't walk around feeling sorry for yourself.

Don't Be Person Dependent

If you are depending on someone to make you happy then you are bound to constantly be disappointed. your friends won't always be available to go out and if you are always asking the same person to go out with you, he or she is bound to get fed up with you at some point. Learn to create your own happiness and to discover your interests.

Spend Time With Your Creator

When I was in my teens I spent alot of time talking to God and reading His word. I think through the changes in my life and my disappointment with the way things have turned out, I have neglected my relationship with God. I am still actively involved in church and I read my Bible but that deep connection with God is not there and I find that I am sadder and more bothered with life. Your spiritual health is important and when your relationship with your Creator is excellent, you will truly know that you are never alone because He is always with you.

Don't let loneliness consume you. Create your own happiness, discover your interests and spend time with you Creator so that you can make the best use of your life.



Creating Happiness

Happiness On my birthday, August 30, 2013, I received a phone call from my uncle that I will never forget. We were chatting and laughing and catching up when he paused for a few seconds and then said "Never depend on another people to make you happy. No one else can make you happy but yourself and no one can make you sad unless you allow them to." I have seen quotes that say similar things many times but hearing those words being spoken  to me really brought the message home.

Happiness is an important aspect of life but many people don't realise that it isn't found in wealth or possessions. True happiness is found in appreciating what you have and embracing each challenge and disappointment as it comes. Understanding this fact has led me to write this post so that I can share the wisdom I've garnered over the past two days.

Happiness Requires Effort

As soon as January began this year, I began to make plans for my birthday. I chose where I wanted to go and who I wanted to share that day with me. However, as the year progressed and money got really tight because my temporary job had ended, I abandoned the idea and decided to resort to my usual "sitting at home feeling sorry for my self" birthday. By the middle of August I really began to think about what I was doing and made a matter what, I was going to ENJOY my birthday and be HAPPY on my birthday. As a result, I made a financial decision and got the money I needed to drive into Kingston and spend an awesome evening with some of the people I value most in my life. I made the sacrifice and ended up having an amazing evening.

The sacrifice that you may have to make may not be financial. It may require you to give up friends who are making you unhappy or it may require you to give up some time that you would spend doing more work than necessary so that you can do something you enjoy.  Nevertheless, when the sacrifice is made you will be amazed at how great you feel.

Happiness Requires Us to Stop What Comes So Easily

The thing that comes most easily to many of us is negativity. We tell ourselves that we don't look good enough or we don't have any friends or we aren't good enough to do something. According to an article written by Amie (2012) entitled How Thoughts Determine How You Feel negative thoughts feed each other and cause your body to respond physically and emotionally. She states that she experienced headaches, muscle tension and depression because of negative thoughts . However, she also states that when we begin to think positively and make positive statements our body responds positively.

Another call that I got on my birthday was from my aunt and she encouraged me to go into my new job with a positive attitude. Although it is not what I want to do, if I give it 100% then I may just be rewarded with exactly what I want to do. Positive thinking leads to positive results.

Happiness Overcomes Fear

Fear will always be an ever present force in our lives. It is how we choose to deal with it that matters. I provide some tips for overcoming fear in my post entitled Conquering Fear but I will mention here that when we learn to conquer our fears, it frees us from a bondage we have placed ourselves under. Think of a slave who has been shackled and beaten but who has suddenly gotten the strength to shatter the chains. Think of the joy that comes with that experience. This joy is similar to the joy we experience when we learn to overcome our fears. Never let fear take away your joy.

Never Allow Someone to control Your Happiness

When we allow people to have power over our emotions, we become their captives. Always remember that no one can make you happy but yourself. So, when your friend disappoints you by saying that he can't go to the movies with you or he can't come to your celebration then you have two decisions to make. The first decision is to become sad and upset because of the disappointment. The second is to smile, understand where your friend is coming from, and find something else that makes you happy. Probably you can watch a movie at home or find another friend to go out with. Regardless, the point is that you are in control of your emotions and of your happiness. Don't relinquish that control to someone else.

I hope that this post can help you to find true happiness in your life. Always remember that you are the only one who can make you happy.

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