Courage first, confidence after

Courage is the power of the mind to overcome fear.

Martin Luther King

Many years ago I was a very shy girl. I was afraid to speak, especially to disagree with someone, I was afraid to stand out from the crowd, I was frightened by anything new, and I was considered quite an introvert.

Now, after years of self-reflection, months of intense self-love, thousands articles and books on psychology and self-esteem – I understand that being shy wasn’t my fault. When I was a child, I was physically and emotionally punished for the smallest attempt to speak up and express my opinion. So with the years of abuse, I’ve developed the program – it’s safer when I dont drag attention to me.

But while considering this as a safe tactic, I was dreaming to one day become confident. To be daring and fearless as that celebrity, or that friend, or that neighbor. To be as confident as someone else is.

If only I were confident! I could finally have a courage to speak up!

If only I were confident – I could show that asshole his place!

I was dreaming and waiting for confidence to come to me and change my life.

If only I were confident – my life would be so much better.

Years passed in waiting for that miracle to happen to me…

Until I realized that it works the other way around.

You don’t become confident and then you act. You first find courage to act – and then the confidence starts building up.

Confidence does not mean not having fear. It means the courage to act despite the fear.

Feel the fear but do it anyway.

You can’t deny that your heart beats twice faster, you sweat and breathe heavily or you feel like throwing up your stomach. But you have the power to act anyway.

Speak up when you are frightened by what’s gonna happen after. Go for the interview, or date, even when your whole body becomes soft and it feels like you cant walk. Go for that trip even if you are afraid that every plane crashes or that there are only thieves and killers living in your destination.

Do it afraid but don’t expect it to be perfect. And you will become confident.

After going for 10 interviews – it becomes like a new hobby for you. After speaking up at the meetings – you become respected. After speaking up in a relationship – you jump to the whole new level of communication, and your relationship strengthens.

Accept that you are afraid, describe worse-case scenario and realize that it’s not the end of the world. Accept it too, and then act.

We are so scared of everything, that it blocks us from doing truly great things. Talents are dying in fear to be judged and rejected. Beautiful minds are wasted in a prison of fear.

The only way to deal with anything in our life – is to face and accept it.

It’s not your fault that you are frightened. Your experiences caused you to be that way, but it’s not your life sentence. You can change.

Be aware, accept it, and act anyway. And see how everything starts changing.

It’s really simple.

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