One of the scariest and yet most courageous moments of my life was moving “across the pond” from Boston to London in October 2015. While I was an avid traveller having spent time in many countries, home to me was always Boston, Massachusetts. Yet in 2015, with a promising job opportunity and a blossoming long-distance relationship, this long-time Boston gal was ready to make the move of her life and hop to pond from Boston to London.
Was I scared? Sure. But I knew I’d be fine. After one of my final taxi rides across Boston the driver looked at me, smiled and in his thick Boston accent said, “stay tough.” Little did I know those words of wisdom from a Boston taxi driver would stay with me until this day. What did I learn from this? A little lesson in building self-confidence. The lesson is that you must take action in order to gain self-confidence. Take a chance. Do something brave. You need to learn just how capable you really are. You will never know this until you test yourself. By testing yourself and seeing that you can rely on yourself you will start to build self-confidence. By the way, testing yourself doesn’t have to be something big, e.g. you don’t have to move across the world. You can start small.
First you must take an honest look at your life and ask yourself:
What is missing in my life?
What is stopping me from achieving what I want?
What am I afraid of?
For many it is a fear of failure. It is that nagging voice that says, “What will people say if I fail? Or “What if I discover that I am actually not good enough to get that promotion, or the new job, or able to finally lose that weight?” Once that inner fear starts talking and we choose to listen we can fall into the trap of not trying at all. The ironic thing is that if you don’t go after what you want you already failed yourself. The other ironic thing is that by actually failing and still moving forward towards your goals you become more resilient. You will come to learn that you have the inner strength to do what it takes to eventually achieve your goals. And that inner strength is what breeds confidence.
So, the next time you are doubting yourself stop overthinking and start taking action. Do it anyway despite your fear. You will find that over time it becomes easier to go after what you want. You may even look in the mirror someday and realise there is a resilient and confident person in front of you.
And if all else fails just remember the words of wisdom from the Boston taxi driver. “Stay tough.”