I’ve been thinking about confidence lately. What is it? How do I get it, and keep it? I can imagine confidence as a path along a ledge. If you move to much to one side, you fall of the ledge into insecurity. If you move too much to the other, you fall off into arrogance. How do you stay the middle road of confidence? That’s what I’m wondering.
For some reason, I also think of confidence as a physical stance. Feet apart, body strong, looking straight ahead, making eye contact with the future. The stance is grounded, solid. It takes more than a wisp of wind to break a confident stance. Compare this to insecurity, which I imagine as curled into a ball, trying to present the minimum amount of surface to the world. Hiding the face, protecting as much as possible. And then arrogance, which is similar to confidence in stance but not as strong. Looking up, maybe, or eyes closed, and not able to see what is coming down the path. The stance of either insecurity or arrogance is not as stable. Things you can’t see can hit you and knock you over.
So really, mixing all of my metaphors together, what I want is a strong stance on a wide path. How to get that?
It seems that I waffle back and forth. From insecurity I force myself to stand up and be confident to move forward and try new things. With some success, my confidence grows to the point I feel like I’m doing well, only to be occasionally knocked back by something I didn’t see coming in my arrogance or ignorance. Is there a way to hold the middle path?
All I’ve figured out so far is that I keep moving forward, pretending confidence when I don’t have it. Otherwise I’d be balled up by insecurity, stuck in one place. Hoping that my confidence, when marvelously gained for those brief moments, does not turn to arrogance. It seems to me a fine balance to hold.
I’m hoping someday, the path of confidence is wider than it feels right now. I mean, look at all of the things I’m confident in now, I don’t even think about, that I used to worry about or that used to seem enormous. But maybe that’s the key, the path is always wider looking back than looking forward. It’s the act of moving forward, that widens the path.