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Bragging vs. Self-Confidence—Healthy Mindset

If you can’t take the heat (of self-confidence) get yo’ ass out the kitchen I’m on a mission!-Coolio Inspired, Fantastic Voyage

When it comes to cooking and creating recipes, I’m pretty confident—I never second guess myself, I believe in myself, and I’m happy while cooking.  Even though I face tough times (while in the kitchen), I can maintain my composure—believing I can get through the day while executing the task at hand.

Believe it or not, I’ve not always thought this way about myself, the spirit of greatness and self-assurance is new to me—telling myself that I did a great job has been tough. I grew up in a very humbling household; my mother taught us with her actions. She was kind, never bragged, she worked two jobs, raised two kids, —all while completing college. My mother made sure that, my brother and I were safe, felt love within the household, and raised us to be grateful.

Of course, there where those tough situations—she couldn’t afford the latest shoes or name brand clothes, when we begged for them; but a week or month would go by, and to our surprise, our wish, she granted. My mother never complained about her circumstances, and when I would hear people praise or compliment her on her successes, she never responded in a pretentious nature. She would smile, humbly, and say, “Thank you”—moving on to the next task. She always said, “Just be thankful, never brag.”

I appreciate her modest attitude, but at the same time, I assume my mother didn’t recognize her power, at the time—I never witnessed her celebrate herself. It wasn’t until several years ago, in many ways, I’m just like my mother.

Never let other’s validate your greatness.

I was taught to work hard—that’s what you are supposed to do; awards and compliments are just that. You say, thank you, and keep working hard—integrity conquers all.  As I evolved, in my first profession, I became dependent on the praises from others to validate my performance. I needed that recognition to confirm a job well done.

I noticed, the higher I grew in my career—increased awards, and surprising those around me, the less praise I received. I didn’t understand why, I was working harder, and improving—was I doing something wrong?  No, but with growth comes intimidation from others.

In meetings, I dumbed down my ideas, and my outspoken attitude began to weaken—becoming quiet and less involved. Relying on other people’s approval had become unhealthy, and it wasn’t until later in life that I recognized that my thought process was affecting my performance—leading me to low self-esteem.

Bragging vs. Self-Confidence

At an early young age, we were taught and are prepared for the adverse effects of bragging and boasting—a cocky attitude gets you nowhere in life, and this is true, to an extent. Self-glorification is selfish; displaying a self-centered attitude is unattractive. Yes, an arrogant attitude has a way of turning people off, but has self-confidence been confused with cockiness? I believe so—there is a thin line between a braggadocious attitude and having confidence.

Once I recognized, my lack of self-pride, I had to alter my thought process. Daily I had to include words of affirmations within my morning meditation —positive beliefs about myself, reminding myself of my greatness and the value of my existence. My intentions, towards others, have always been considerate, so feeling good about my talents and intellect isn’t wrong—not motivating or believing in myself is wrong; I deserve to feel good about my accomplishments.

Now, there are moments where I have to remind myself that self-confidence will and can intimidate others. For example, as I mentioned earlier, when I am in the kitchen, I can admit— I have a “Kanye West” attitude (not the crazy Kanye character). I know for a fact that I’m an excellent chef, and there are times where I say, out loud “Wow, that looks amazing.” or “I did a great job.” For some, this can come across as boasting, but why?

Self-motivation isn’t a crime, or wrong—if you don’t believe in yourself, then you are not satisfied. When you are pleased with your gifts and skills, you get excited, and there is nothing wrong with patting yourself on the back.

Understanding that your confidence will intimidate those around you, who are not happy, is essential; the more you grow, the stronger you need to become—you have to believe in yourself. We live in a world where people become quiet when you are celebrating. Think about it, when you post a negative or traumatic post on social media, people can’t wait to respond, but when you share your happiness or accomplishments, the responses are short.

Never devalue yourself for the sake of others.

Expressing the love you have yourself is healthy; not believing in yourself is harmful. If you are satisfied and pleased with your accomplishments, shout it out! It’s not boasting—you are living.

Never hold back your joy based on the unhappiness of others. You can only control the way you address your achievements—that’s with kindness, gratefulness, and with the intent to motivate.

Speaking down on other people, only to make yourself feel better, displays arrogance. Gossiping about others, bragging, and flaunting about your material gains, that reveals a lack of self-pride and low self-esteem.

You deserve and you have the right to be excited about the skills you possess. Sharing the positive outcomes of hard work should only motivate others to do the same. Your journey can help others in realizing through all the pain and obstacles there is a higher outcome.

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