Self-confidence is something many of us strive for our whole lives. We live in a culture that believes that self-confidence leads to greater success. But does it really? Or does self-confidence, as some suggest, lead to arrogance and a lack of trust in other people? The answer to the first question is a resounding yes; self-confidence really does help improve personal achievement.
The online blog “Time Management Ninja”, written by Craig Jarrow, lists 10 reasons why self-confidence leads to success. Some reasons given are that self-confident people:
- Stand up for themselves;
- Have the drive to start things;
- Have the ability to say yes or no, when needed;
- Are better at overcoming fear;
- Tend to set the bar of achievement very high.
But let’s look at the other end of the scale: self-doubt. Granted, self-doubt, or the lack of confidence in oneself and one’s abilities, can occasionally be helpful, as it can push us to learn more or seek help from others. But too much self-doubt leads to inaction when facing new challenges and causes us to worry over the things we do undertake. Self-doubt has been associated with anxiety and depression, as well as with difficulty making decisions and not feeling in control of one’s life.
Once you start to believe in yourself, magic starts to happen.
An Analysis of the Problem
There is an abundant supply of self-help books and videos telling us how to develop self-confidence. The advice runs the gamut from improving your diet to facing your deepest fears, from smiling more to speaking your mind. But lack of self-confidence can be a deep-seated issue that is challenging to overcome on your own.
There are two parts to the issue: self and confidence. The secret to building confidence is to focus on the self. Once the self feels whole and nourished from within, confidence is there—quickly and naturally.
Develop the Self and Confidence will Follow
The Transcendental Meditation technique allows you to dive within your self, beyond the noise, doubt, and fears of everyday life, to effortlessly experience deeper levels of being— of self. You feel more expansive and freer from the limitations of self-doubt, stress, and fatigue. In addition, the deep rest gained during the twice-daily practice of TM improves brain function and helps to relieve anxiety and depression. Your self-image naturally transforms when you grow in creativity, clear thinking and inner calm through the practice of TM.
A study published in the British Journal of Psychology shows that TM practice develops a more strongly-defined self-concept, with meditators perceiving their “actual self” as significantly closer to their “ideal self.”
Another study conducted on students found that the TM technique brought about improvements in academic performance, greater moral maturity, increased orientation toward positive values, increased intelligence, increased self-confidence, increased sociability, increased psychological health, and increased social maturity in college.
This study showed that TM develops the whole personality in a balanced way, so that practicing TM does not lead to an overblown sense of one’s self-worth. On the contrary, your increased confidence grows alongside increased sociability, greater moral maturity, and more positive values. All you need to do is dive deep within your self with TM and come out feeling ready to take on the world by making positive changes in your own life and in the lives of others.
—Maharishi Mahesh Yogi
Aron A, Orme-Johnson D, Brubaker P. The Transcendental Meditation program in the college curriculum: a four-year longitudinal study of effects on cognitive and affective functioning. College Student Journal 1981 15(2):140-146.