Imagine our confidence was like a health bar you see in video games. You can either get attacked and lose health points or you can find power ups and gain health points.
This is exactly how confidence works.
Every single choice you make either adds to your confidence or takes away from it. There is no in-between. Regardless of how small or large the choice is, it will decrease or increase your confidence.
Just say “hello” dammit!
You’re in line at Starbucks to pick up some coffee and next to you is a gorgeous woman. You’re immediate thought is that you want to introduce yourself and get to know her. However the longer you take, the more your thoughts of self doubt creep in.
- She’s too pretty for me.
- What if she rejects me?
- I’m going to look like an idiot.
Eventually the soldiers of doubt invade your brain like the beaches of Normandy to the point of paralysis.
You freeze up and proceed to order your latte with a side of shame.
This situation is called “Approach Anxiety” in the world of pick up artists.
Here’s the urban dictionary definition:
Approach anxiety (AA) is a term used to describe a man who feels highly nervous, awkward and distressed during (or even before) the act of approaching and getting to know women he has never met before. While the anxiety often derives from a greater social phobia, approach anxiety itself derives specifically from man’s belief that he is very likely to be rejected by the woman of his desire in unpleasant and harsh ways.
It takes confidence to approach a woman you’ve never met before. You’re putting yourself in a vulnerable position and it’s very uncomfortable because you have no control of the outcome.
Let’s go back to the example at Starbucks. You see the woman and you decide to approach and say hello. Regardless of the outcome, you’ve faced the fear and showed you’re brain that you’re not going to die from saying hello to a woman. Confidence +1. However if you succumb to the anxiety. Round house kick to your face and confidence -1.
The studs you see at the bar approaching women? They have approached so many times that their confidence health bar is maxed out and they feel little if any anxiety when approaching.
They felt the fear and did it anyway.
Writing this article.
I only got 5 hours of sleep last night and the last thing I wanted to do was write this. My brain screamed for me to take a nap. I wanted to lay down, shut my eyes and tell myself that I would write this when I woke up.
The problem was that I know the difference between when my brain wants to nap because it’s tired versus when it wants to avoid doing something.
While in college, I took the most naps during finals because my brain wanted to avoid the studying.
My mental game was weak.
This weak behavior has happened so many times that I’ve developed an awareness to it. Procrastination has been the worst habit of my life so far and the devil of my time. Each time I succumb to it’s grip, my confidence and happiness goes down.
My decision was to either write this or take a nap. I knew that sitting down and writing it would increase my confidence while taking a nap would decrease it. I chose to sit down and write it.
Make the choice
Each time I’m faced with a choice I ask myself if it’s going to increase or decrease the confidence in myself.
The choices range from tiny things to big ones.
- I see some trash in my car, do I get rid of it now or wait until later?
- The alarm goes off and I’m still tired, do I get up or do I sleep in?
- Do I say hello to the pretty blonde or do I check my phone for the fourth time?
Each time you face a fear or internal resistance, your confidence in yourself increases. Each time you succumb to it, your confidence decreases.
There is no in-between.
Next time you’re faced with a decision, ask yourself:
“Which decision will increase my confidence in myself?”
Then do that one.