On Practicing Confidence

How my doubt demon looks like. I know, I know, it looks suspiciously like the Balrog...I think they might be related.

How my doubt demon looks like. I know, I know, it looks suspiciously like the Balrog…I think they might be related.

It has been a while since I have written a straight out, Day in the life post, and I’m feeling the itch of a random musing coming on.

What has been on my mind for a while is confidence. Why do some people have it and some people don’t?

This last birthday season has left me with a fourteen-year old and a twelve-year old daughter. (I know. The mind reels.) The problems they face are becoming more complicated, more nuanced as they get older ( I know- no shite , Sherlock). One of the issues we deal with on a daily basis is that of anxiety- mostly anxiety about not being good enough.

When my daughters are feeling like that what can I tell them? You are great! Just be confident! You can do it!

Yeah. Real effective when you are feeling small and helpless and inadequate.

The only response I have to them is that quelling those sorts of doubts and anxieties take practice.

Here is my recipe for personal demon quashing:

1. Give the doubt demon or the nastier “you suck” demon thirty seconds to say all the mean things they need to say, then punch them in the face and get on with things. You may replace punching in the face with more violent means of disposal depending on the size of the demon. You might have to get a stake or a battle axe and engage in some demon slayage.

2. Work: The way you get on with things is by working at whatever you are feeling not confident about. Work, work work. When the doubt demon starts telling me I’m an idiot to even think I can write, that there is no way I’m smart enough or have enough imagination, or any of the other things my evil self likes to tell me, I stick my head back in my work and occupy my brain with real, solvable problems [after I have completed step 1 of course].

3. Repeat. Punch in the face. Work. Punch in the face. Work.

I talked about how lack of self-confidence affected me as a teenager in this post.

All in all, I am getting pretty good at personal demon quashing (it must be all the darn practice I get.)

I’m thinking of texting the Buffster to see if she wants to grab a drink and share trade secrets…

Fellow demon slayer. We should start a bowling league or a book club or something.

Fellow demon slayer. We should start a bowling league or a book club or something.

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This entry was posted in A Day in the Life, Parenting Confessions and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to On Practicing Confidence

  1. Isaac Yuen says:

    Thanks. I am in need of a pick me up, and punching demons in the face gives me something to work with.

  2. Is there ANYTHING we can’t learn from Buffy? Good post, Lina! 🙂

  3. Kathy says:

    I like Anne Lamott’s idea of taking all the voices (writing the people’s names on little pieces of paper) and sticking them in a jar. Open up the jar a little to hear them scream all their negativity at you and then screw the lid down tight. Ahhhhh.

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