Pointer: I make reference to The Service Model™ in this On-Purpose Minute. Here is a link to review, purchase, and download a copy. Click Here for Your Copy.
Look at the kid in the front row, fourth from the left! Yep, the one with the rolled-up pants (room to grow) and checkered jacket. That’s yours truly in Mrs. (Lois) Johnson’s Kindergarten in Bethel Park, PA! My guess is the photo was taken in 1960 and I’m five years old. I was one of the youngest kids in this class.
I was blessed with a very happy childhood. I don’t look really happy on the day of this photograph. Come to think of it, none of the boys look too thrilled to be this close to girls (yuck!) and under such tight control with our hands in our laps!
In reviewing my report card from those days, I read “Kevin is young and lacks confidence.” Fortunately, my parents decided to hold me back a year so I could grow in confidence. Yes, I repeated kindergarten! My parents’ wisdom set me on a more positive trajectory for life. Thanks, Mom and Dad!
Odd that I still remember those words and that label “Kevin … lacks confidence.” It used to really bug me that I was a person who lacked confidence. As I’ve matured, I realize how wrong my understanding of that statement was. Mrs. Johnson was offering feedback to my parents so they could make informed decisions to remedy the matter rather than labeling me. I’m the one who mistakenly “owned” the label. Five- and six-year-old minds do things like that. Sadly, so do 25-, 35-, 45- … year-old minds, too!
Each of us lacks confidence at the start of anything new. Confidence can apply to a skill or aptitude but not to the very nature or soul of a person—that’s just too destructive.
Have you bought a lie that you lack confidence or some other such nonsense? Don’t!
Let’s rephrase the statement and shift your perspective. You just haven’t yet found the bedrock of your beliefs and faith upon which to grow in confidence! I promise you that this solid ground for the soul exists in you. Like innate leadership, you have a place where you are designed and destined to be confident. It is a birthright that you may need to claim (or reclaim). Keep looking!
Look into the eyes of that little boy on the first row then and today in the video. As a person, does he lack confidence today? I’ve been a speaker in arenas in front of thousands. I’ve been on TV and radio broadcasts throughout the USA and Canada. People without confidence don’t do that.
How Do You Build Your Confidence?
There’s the question I’m placing before you. I’ve found the readers of this blog are a bright bunch of people. Please share your insights, comments, or quotes in the Comments section below. Let’s help one another become more confident as leaders of our lives.
Quotes About Confidence
Readers of The On-Purpose Person and The On-Purpose Business Person know that I start each chapter with a quotation. For this post, I turned to my book of quotations about confidence specifically. These quotations will stimulate your thinking:
“I had no vision of the scope of what I would start. But I had confidence that as long as we did our work well and were good to our customers, there would be no limit to us.”
Sam Walton, Founder of Walmart (1918–1992)
“To do anything in this world worth doing, we must not stand back shivering and thinking of the cold and danger, but jump in, and scramble through as well as we can.”
Sydney Smith, Anglican Clergyman and writer (1771–1845)
“Fortunate is the person who has developed the self-control to steer a straight course toward his objective in life, without being swayed from his purpose by either commendation or condemnation.”
“Calm self-confidence is as far from conceit as the desire to earn a decent living is remote from greed.”
Channing Pollack, U.S. Magician and Hollywood Actor (1926–2006)
“Confidence is the feeling by which the mind embarks in great and honorable courses with a sure hope and trust in itself.”
Cicero, Roman philosopher, 1st Century B.C.
I leave you with one parting On-Purpose Proverb:
“Awareness of one’s lack of confidence indicates that your heart and your head are still talking. They just need to get the rest of the body moving so the next lesson can be learned more readily.”