Confidence is typically defined two ways...
"The feeling or belief that one can rely on someone or something; firm trust"
"A feeling of self-assurance arising from one's appreciation of one's own abilities or qualities"
With these definitions in mind, read the following:
A local golf team/club just finished first in their division after a long successful season and are heading to the playoffs. Just after their last win the coach/captain asks his players how confident they feel about their chances in the playoffs. Every player on the team responds with very positive confident comments. You can see it in the way they carry themselves, they are proud of their accomplishments and confident in their individual and team abilities. Throughout the regular season matches the team, has had great weather, played on good courses, and had a lot of support from their fellow members and professional golf staff.
The first playoff match is scheduled on a day when most of the team is unavailable to play, however, the players make changes to their personal schedules to play in the match. The opposing club is about a 90 minute drive, traffic is heavy, it is raining, and most of the players arrive later than they originally planned. The course is not well maintained, it is wet from all the rain and the opposing professional golf staff and team is unwelcoming. The coach/captain asks his players how confident they feel about their upcoming round. Every player starts in with the rain, traffic, poorly maintained course and unwelcome greeting. All the players start the round without the confidence they had after the last regular season match.
Why was the team confident after the regular season? What do you think happened to their confidence the day of the first playoff match? What affected their confidence before the first playoff match?
Confidence is something that is built from within, and should not be (but often is) affected by external factors. There are a lot of things in life that can throw you off your "game," but none of them should change the confidence that you have in yourself and your abilities. Next time you need to be confident remember where it comes from (inside you) and realize that external factors don't change that confidence.
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