Archive for June 2013

BE CONFIDENT   Leave a comment

Any child of the 80’s growing up in western society has likely witnessed the fantasy movie The Neverending Story.  It, like most works of fiction, contain within it profound truths. I have already mentioned some of these truths from other works of art in previous posts. The Neverending Story is of no exception.

There is a very powerful scene in the movie that has Atreyu, the hero of the story (metaphorically representing the everyman, or all of us), facing an ominous and foreboding obstacle in his search for the Southern Oracle (metaphorically representing Truth) This obstacle (a gate of golden Sphinxes) can see straight into the hearts of all beings and to pass through one must have full confidence in themselves, shedding all doubt, or else they will be destroyed by the gate. Atreyu approaches the gate cautiously and is overwhelmed by the presence of the Sphinxes. He notices a fallen hero before him and begins to doubt himself. Then, at the last moment, he musters his confidence and runs through the gate unscathed and is able to continue his journey (metaphorically representing the journey of life)

Click the title below for the scene.

Through The Spinxes

This is very relevant to our everyday lives and highlights the importance of self-confidence in our life’s progression. For we all will face obstacles, large and small, and must have the confidence to push through to reach our goals and see our dreams to fruition. One’s confidence often has a converse relationship to self-doubt. However, I must make it clear that doubt in itself is not inherently negative. Doubt is a path to wisdom for it forces us to question our motives, beliefs, and the workings of the world around us. Doubt can serve as a reality check for us to temper expectations and change our course for our own betterment. Doubt is the reason science has advanced humanity so far from its primal past.

Yet, persistent or malignant self-doubt has a paralyzing effect for if we lack confidence we will likely fail at what we are doing. Whether, for example, it’s a task on the job or having fulfilling social interactions. Subsequently we will not be who we are and if we do not be who we are we tend to make negative self-judgments about ourselves or regret and ruminate upon our failed opportunities. Thus, stunting our personal growth. This has a negative feedback loop and often we continually reinforce our lack of action/being to our continued detriment.

I personally have dealt with the conflict of doubt and self-confidence, particularly during my adolescent years. Like so many of us this was a time of great identity formation and confusion as I transformed into an adult. For many as it was for me, this is the great Sphinx that stands in our way. My obstacle was to liberate myself from the opinions and judgments of others. I allowed peer pressure to keep me down. Once I no longer permitted that pressure I was able to tap into my own confidence and strive on to where I am today and into who I will become in the future. It feels good to be confident.

I view malignant self-doubt to be a form of delusion not only because it invokes irrational beliefs about ourselves and leads to negative thinking, but because it simply is an expression of a false self, for the human potential is limitless.

Take the example of our best professional athletes. They have supreme confidence in their abilities. They help their teams win games and believe fully in themselves. They work hard to better themselves and their confidence serves as motivation to do so. Muhammad Ali famously said “I am the Greatest” and he was. A perfect example of full confidence at work. The same can be applied to those who have achieved great things in their life and lived their lives to the fullest, they were confident. They knew who they were and knew they could be who they wanted to be, just as confident people continue to be and do today.

Let me be perfectly clear, YOU can do it, YOU can be who you are and grow.

What are your obstacles? What are the reasons and excuses you are coming up with that are paralyzing you and leading you into negative thought processes? Whatever they maybe is it not time to shed this doubt and free your energy to reach your greatest potential?

The time is indeed NOW.

BE CONFIDENT!