According to research, confidence is 50% genetic, 10% life experience and 40% within our control (Lyubomirksy, S., Sheldon, K.M., & Schkade, D., 2005).

With that in mind, isn’t it reassuring to know that we have the ability to change our confidence levels. It’s in our control. The power is ours.

Some factors that may have led us to feel a lack of confidence are:

– The messages we received in early life. For example, our parents are the first source of learning a child has. However, if our parents are suffering from some confidence issues themselves, they will pass them on to us. The parent can only teach the child what he/she already knows. If they do not have the skills themselves, they cannot pass them on to their children. Conversely, children who grow up with encouragement, acceptance and love are more likely to be self-confident.

– Those around us also influence our confidence levels. Relationships with siblings, our extended family, our friends, our teachers and our peers can influence how we feel about ourselves. For example, if our peers view us in a negative light, or we find it hard to fit in at school or socially, that can impact our confidence in a negative way.

– Issues such as prolonged stress at work, or illness can affect our confidence levels too. If we feel we are not good enough, not doing well enough at work or school, or under pressure for a sustained period of time, we can find ourselves low in confidence.

– Issues around money or perhaps a lack of it and financial stress can also leave us feel lacking in confidence. This is especially true if we have dependents or become dependent on others.

– Being treated differently or made fun of because we are different physically or otherwise can negatively impact our confidence also.

Looking back on your life experience thus far, have any of these factors affected you? Some of them may have made you stronger; others kinder or gentler; others again make you more sensitive. Our life experiences, good and bad, shape the person we become, and therefore our confidence.

Yet, we still have another 40% that has the potential to dramatically change our confidence for the better. That’s a lot of power, in our own hands, to become the type of confident person we desire. That’s quite reassuring, isn’t it! But remember, you alone are responsible for your journey. You have to do the work required to build confidence.  The power is in your hands. There isn’t a quick fix. It takes time, and energy and practice. It’s worth it though, don’t you think?

Looking back, how have your life experiences shaped your confidence today?

Are you taking control of that 40%?

If you want a little help owning that 40%, download your free poster/screensaver in the FREE STUFF page. There are a few helpful ideas in there.

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