In our culture, it is very familiar to read, hear, and deeply understand from our own experience what it is like to seek confidence, exude confidence, and feel confident or 'a lack thereof' which is usually labelled as insecure. Confidence is something to be desired and attained, and insecurity is to be overcome.
When I added the 'inner' to confidence (www.innerconfidencecoaching.com), I was pointing to confidence as being all about an inner state of being rather than attached to external circumstances. As I've worked with inner confidence with many, many people through the years, I continue to deepen my own understanding of the depth of what this means and feels like.
My own definition of inner confidence - the sense of well-being that comes from deeply knowing yourself, accepting the lightness and darkness of being human, and expressing your true nature in the world - still stands. And the nuances of its meaning continues to be refined with time, understanding, and experience. For example,
- Our deepest nature refers to self-realization. This means that when we ask ourselves the question, "Who am I?", we experience the inner knowing that we are essentially spaciousness, stillness, presence. Knowing this changes everything as it allows us to feel the freedom of living beyond the mind. An identity shifts that creates a sense of playfulness and joy.
- Accepting the darkness and lightness of being human takes us beyond the polarities of right/wrong, good/bad, getting it right/making mistakes - all grounded in the mind. These points of views lead us down a road of emotional reaction and suppression. Another way is to have tools to accept what is, connect with the truth of who we are, come from the present, and take action in sync with the natural flow of our lives. We embrace feelings of confidence and feelings of insecurity, accepting that both are part of the human experience.
- We become aware of our gifts through others, the natural gifts that flow through us in our own unique way. From this place, the focus of our life is not about changing or fixing ourselves, founded upon the belief that "I'm not good enough" or "something is wrong with me". Life becomes about clearing the way so that our gifts are expressed fully. In the practice of being our true selves and giving what we are here to give, we feel alive and joyful and free. This is our spiritual practice.
I welcome into my heart feelings of confidence and feelings of insecurity, knowing that the full spectrum of feelings is part of the rich fabric of being human. I am grateful to be alive.
© 2009 Jeannie Campanelli, Inner Confidence Coaching. All Rights Reserved.