“I Have Confidence”

You might remember a young Maria (Julie Andrews) singing this song to fortify herself as she left the convent to care for seven motherless children.

Her Mother Superior could see that Maria wasn’t a good fit for convent life and had pushed her to her destiny.

But what about the rest of us?

Confidence can be elusive, especially if you don’t have your own Mother Superior to give you a proper shove in the right direction.

You see a competitor—who doesn’t have half your talents—win a new client you’ve coveted. Or write an attention-grabbing piece for a major publication that you’d been thinking about submitting. You gnash your teeth in frustration.

So here’s the question you might ask yourself next time: what’s the worst that can happen if I (fill in the blank)? My audience laughs at my audacity? Gives me a public dressing-down?

So what! You’ll never take the right leaps if you can’t break through your fear of what other people think.

Of course you need to assess risks in a pragmatic way—sometimes, the best move is no move. But before you take the path of least resistance, at least give it a run past your favorite Mother Superior.

If all else fails, channel Maria.

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4 Responses to “I Have Confidence”

  1. K.C. Victor says:

    FYI, the wicked twin of your blog is well-described in a blog by one of my other favorite bloggers, Vivia Chen. That particular blog of hers, about Newt Gingrich, can be found at http://thecareerist.typepad.com/thecareerist/2011/12/newt-g.html

  2. Wicked twin indeed! I was thinking, like Vivia, that confidence with talent should always beat arrogance. But obviously not always….

  3. Corey Bearak says:

    The key for many is to find that mentor or mentors. I have been fortunate along the road to gain the benefit of inputs from other. There was one couple who were sometimes known as my “other” parents — and I already came into professional life with two sets. Joining a networking or other group often helps lead one to a mentor. For others, it can be college professors. I remain lucky that people continue to “adopt” me — even in middle age — and as I “adopt” others.

  4. Ain’t that the truth? I’m eternally grateful for being “adopted” and hope I’m doing them justice by paying it forward. Thanks for sharing Corey!

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