According to studies, around 75% of people lack self-confidence. If we think about it, this is a worrying percentage. More than two thirds doubt themselves.
In a nutshell, the majority of us question our capabilities. We don’t believe in ourselves and what we can do. This pushed me to start writing about this delicate (and yet undervalued) matter.
It goes without saying that life is a blend of experiences. Good and bad. Positive and negative.
Now, taking this into account, it is noteworthy to remember that we only have one life and one youth. There is no second chance, and no reset button. You can either enjoy life now, or as it often happens, throw it away.
When we were in our prime, we had dreams and hopes. As children, we aspired to becoming an astronaut or a footballer, an actress, or perhaps a writer. More importantly, they were always smiling. However, as time went by, the same boy and girl are now adults. They got a degree, started their own jobs, and finally settled down with their families.
What might be as a natural, happy ending, may lurk something deeper underneath.
First off, initial dreams are put to bed forever. In fact, when getting into adulthood, individuals need money (and sometimes even quick money), in order to pay for their expenses and living costs. Due to this, they are forced to find a job. Not necessarily a job they like or related to their studies, but the first one they can find.
Unfortunately, when we do something we don’t like just for the sake of money, it becomes forced and thus depressing in time. And doing something we don’t like all day, every day, can be degrading after a while.
Result: depressed, edgy people are everywhere. Who would get up happily in the morning, when knowing they are going to a workplace, meeting individuals they don’t like, or doing a job they like even less?
This all happens due to a lack security. We don’t really know what we are capable of and what we could really achieve if only we put real effort and commitment into it. What we do instead (at least for the majority) is this: to start an activity (like a job), that provides us with the long-awaited financial security and once we achieve it, we rest on our laurels forever.
And what was just initiated for money, becomes like a prison. An invisible one, if you like, but a prison remains. A place very difficult to escape from. This is very clear when settling down, or having a mortgage. When the money becomes absolutely essential every month, who would quit a safe, permanent job?
This sounds sad, however it is reality as it is today. Once again, this happens due to a lack of security within ourselves. We ignore the fact that we could literally ‘rock’ the world, if only we put real dedication and constancy into something specific. As Daniel Defoe used to say in his book Robinson Crusoe,
‘Every man may be, in time,
master of every mechanic art’.
This means that, by putting in true dedication, everything can be learnt from scratch and applied. I myself, for example, had no Excel basics. I could either blame the school system, or sit down, get on-line resources and learn everything by myself. This is how I picked up all the basics, and now I can get by with it. And it all started because I made a choice to roll up my sleeves and put in the time and effort.
Again, when being committed, every ‘art’ (to use Defoe’s words), can be mastered and used to your advantage. However, when taking a closer look at what happens today, it is the complete opposite. Choosing the easy way seems to be the common way. Resting on one’s laurels once a certain level, or position is achieved, is the usual trend. We put our feet up and that’s it.
Taking all this into account, if you are the kind of person who is stuck in their ruts, and would like to feel good again, as you may have in your past, not everything is lost. As I often repeat to myself in times of difficulty:
There is always a chance for those who want to
bounce back…as long as you step in now!
My words can be a little harsh, or uncomfortable, this is true. I am not the kind of person who sugarcoats things, or pulls the wool over people’s eyes. I prefer to tell the truth (however uncomfortable it may be), making some recommendations to get over problems.
Now, if you are living in a situation that you don’t like or can’t stand any longer, you can try out one of these two options:
- The first and most obvious one would be to make radical changes. If you don’t like what you are doing, there comes a time when it is necessary to call it a day and make some radical changes. Having the ability to turn over a new leaf gives a psychological relief, and makes it possible to bounce back and choose a different, more satisfying route (remember, we only live once). Be it a job, a partner, anything. Believe me. Having the courage to change route before being too old can turn out to be one of the wisest choices you can ever take. ‘Letting go’, as you often hear or read, seems the most obvious way. However, not the easiest. It takes courage to do so. This is why it is not always the preferred route for many. In case you are not really willing to do this, you can always opt for another strategy. In fact, when people tell you to just change, this is usually easier said than done. In fact, how can you possible make radical changes when you have your own family to look after, or a 30-year mortgage to pay up? This is why the first option is not really viable for everyone. This is why I came up with an alternative option.
- The second one is to take some time off just for yourself. To cultivate some hobbies. Bear in mind, when I say hobbies, I don’t mean watching TV, browsing social media, reading the news, or simply watching out the window and spy on your neighbors. Not at all. By pastimes, I mean constructive hobbies. An activity you have a passion for. This is a real stress-buster, and helps to you take your mind off things, turning your thoughts to something enjoyable. Now, your next question might be, ‘Where do I find the time?’. Well, people usually say they have no time, but strangely enough they always find time to check out social media, or watch Netflix, or gossip with friends. I am not suggesting you should give up all these activities. Just try to take some time away from these activities, and use it for yourself in a more constructive way. Now, how do you know what you have a passion for? Tip: when you are doing something and time flies by, perhaps your coffee goes cold without you realizing it, there you know you are on the right track. By doing something you love, your mood lifts instantly. You smile more and tend to treat those around you better. So, the benefit would be mutual: for yourself and those around you, like your loved ones.
Working is important, this is true, but it is equally important to create and maintain some extra curricular activities where you take your mind off things and feel better as a result. Life is not just about responsibilities and duty. Otherwise you are not really living, but surviving. As you read this, ask yourself, ‘what do you like doing so much that you would do it no matter the time? Take your life back by doing something you are passionate about. And again, if you have a family, and think you have no time, learn to delegate tasks, in order to finally find some time off just for yourself. Even half an hour a day will do. As long as you take control of your life. Because there is no selfishness, rather self-care, in reclaiming some personal space. Remember, in order to love others, you first must learn to love yourself. Only then, you will be able to properly take care of others.
Take care and good luck.