February 27, 2014 at 11:45 pm #51970AnonymousInactive
I am in my early twenties and will be joining a postgraduation program this year. The issue here is that i still dont feel confident about myself. I have no idea what i really am, beyond the people who surround me – the overtly ambitious types in my undergrad years, my other set of fashionista friends and my down-to-earth ones..Its funny..a part of me believes that i will never get a good/fancy job and i have no idea about whether i will be any good at the thing i feel more inclined to…How do i find myself amidst this crowd of opinions and energies? How do i feel confident?February 28, 2014 at 7:23 am #51989MattParticipant
Confidence is built along the way, in little bite size chunks. Rather than “Who am I? Where am I going?”, we eat when we’re hungry, sleep when we’re tired, study when there’s a test, etc. Said differently, small brush strokes on the canvas is what brings the picture to life, and as we see the picture take shape, the confidence naturally follows. A person’s character and ability is defined by a bazillion little steps, little kindnesses to ourselves and others… rather than a specific career, job, class you take, person we kiss, test we pass etc. Little brush strokes, dear sister.
Consider that being young, you have a lot to learn about living a joyous path. That’s OK, normal, usual… we all have to figure out how to dance and it takes time. So be patient with yourself, kind. You deserve it! Consider that you’re already disillusioned with a lot of materialism, which is a beautiful… especially considering how young you are. Remember that your brain is still finishing up the development of your frontal lobe, and as it does, seeing the “big picture” becomes easier, simpler. So, don’t fret it, don’t worry… just study your passion and eat when you’re hungry, sleep when you’re tired. Over time, we figure out who we are from the nourishment these little moments give to us. 🙂
Good luck on your post-grad work. What are you going to be studying?
MattFebruary 28, 2014 at 9:12 am #51998AikiBenParticipant
Perhaps Matt has the right approach here in not giving any specific advice/actions because we all have to find our own way and it takes time. But the rewards are more than worth it not too long after you make a start. For me, I started and stalled in looking for answers and trying to get to the bottom of things of the nature that you are speaking of. When I finally committed to it is when I started to find the real gold in life.
However I will recommend some things that have helped me greatly and which seem to also help many others too, they’re fairly universal so to speak. How do you find yourself amidst all that noise?… turn inwards: meditate, walk in nature, read books (the sort that you will find recommended on this site) and of course there is so much great stuff in the articles here.
All the best,
Ben.February 28, 2014 at 9:37 am #52003AnonymousInactive
Well thank you so much, Matt and AikiBen for replying..:)
I get a bit insecure sometimes but i guess i need to be patient with my growth. This gap year after college has proved pivotal in giving me time to start exploring, really introspect. I have reconnected with my friends and found love…every day, little by little, i feel like i am opening up more and caring. Now that i am heading to do economics, i know a wee bit about the kind of work i would like to do. At the same time though, i guess my biggest fear is social awkwardness. I get anxious in big gatherings and i suppose it will fade with time. I do doubt my abilities even now. Still, all in good time!
Thank you once again!February 28, 2014 at 9:40 am #52004The RuminantParticipant
I very much like Matt’s response. It’s kind of vague and poetic, but that’s pretty much how things go 🙂
Don’t compare how other people appear to be on the outside to how you feel on the inside. It’s an illusion that others would have everything figured out. Also, strong voices might be strong because they are trying to convince themselves. Truly confident people are very, very rare, and the ones I’ve met are mostly older people. I have never met a confident person in their early twenties. Enthusiastic and bold, yes, but not confident. Confidence comes with experience; both good and bad.February 28, 2014 at 9:49 am #52006MarkParticipant
I want to comment on what you said about being socially awkward in big gatherings.
If you are an introvert then that is perfectly natural. Check out Susan Cain’s book, “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking” and her TED talk. It’s very validating for us introverts for she writes about the great qualities we have. She also has a Facebook page, etc.
MarkFebruary 28, 2014 at 12:13 pm #52021AnonymousInactive
🙂 Hey Mark, hit the nail on the head! i am an introvert actually and seeing that video had a big impact on me. I even read the book! She’s amazing!! However, my awkwardness is not just introversion, its social anxiety..It gets really bad sometimes. I have these times when say i am posing for group photos, i get so nervous that my cheeks start twitching…I feel my heart pounding at 100 beats a minute or something -_- And i guess the idea of going back to college and facing that stress of meeting so many new people worries and excites me too.
@The ruminant: i loved that idea of yours – Don’t compare how other people appear to be on the outside to how you feel on the inside. I have done this a lot and it makes me feel so inadequate!February 28, 2014 at 2:42 pm #52032AruniParticipant
Some very good posts by others.
Confidence comes with age and experience. It really does. That doesn’t mean that your so called ‘social anxiety’ disappears, it’s more that you become relaxed about it. You actually start to appreciate it. Because all it means is you are a sensitive person, and that’s a good thing. The world needs sensitive people. You will start to see it as a positive and it won’t affect you so much. That’s what happened to me anyway 🙂
All the best.