'It is better to be hated for what you are
than to be loved for what you are not'
- Andre GideI often have the deepest conversations with my older brother, I swear he is my life mentor. I will owe him a lot, the day I succeed. Having experienced a string of what I would value as failures a while back, I felt I had hit rock bottom and was in the midst of a breakdown, losing direction in life and questioning my purpose. I am thankful for my family for being the positive guiding light in my life, and for my older brother for his deep wise words. With the conversation still ringing in my ear, resurrecting me from my dead negative self into this positive being full of strength and inspiration, I hope his words will bring you strength too, those who are also struggling out there.
1. Confidence is key. With confidence, even if you have failed, you are not a failure and you will proceed to succeed because you know exactly what you are capable of and nomatter what, you are still going to get there and nothing can stop you. Those who are truly confident are extremely powerful, because nothing can affect them, they know who they are and they know what they need to do. With age and maturity, confidence builds. Quoting my wise older brother, 'You see old people walking around with that "I don't give a f*ck" attitude. It's because they've seen it all and experienced it all, there is nothing for them to worry and care about anymore. The sooner you reach that stage the better.'
2. Confidence means you are real, you don't alter yourself. You especially don't alter yourself to fit into different social groups. Quoting my wise older brother once again, 'real confidence is not changing how you act and talk amongst different people'. You should talk to the receptionist on the phone the same way you talk to a friend, with no change in voice. There is no need to soften your voice or 'talk up' to anyone.
3. There is a balancing act to perform in life between being socially aware and being real. Being real sounds cliche. The problem with being real means you may rub some people the wrong way, you may offend them and that's all good if you don't care about what they think, that's real confidence, but life isn't so simple. We live in a world where we are interconnected and we need to collaborate with people and get along with one another. Hence keep it real but remain socially aware and know at what times you just have to tone it down to make life easier for yourself. Just keep in mind that people can sense it when you are being real, and most people will love you for that. 'I would respect a person far more for being real and weird, than normal and fake'.
4. Confidence is also linked to your body, not in the superficial sense. Your mind and body is connected so a healthy mind and body are both just as important. We can build confidence through building strength in our body, this is why fitness is important. Apparently, a large majority of ancient philosophers were wrestlers before they made their historical contributions. Plato won two prizes as a championship wrestler at one time and Socrates has been famously quoted for the following: “No man has the right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training. It is a shame for a man to grow old without seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.” Furthermore, apparently it is more important to build your body than it is to build your mind in your 20's, because it is your health in your 20's that is set up for your old age.
After a string of failures, taking a hit to the confidence, it is important to regain it by knowing exactly who you are: I am a 'fighter' and I am 'builder'. My name doesn't mean 'warrior' in English and 'ruler' in Chinese for no reason. If you ride with me, you will succeed with me. Ambition is an extremely attractive quality to me and all my girls are powerhouses. There is not a minuscule of doubt that my future partner will achieve success, for I am only attracted to passionate, ambitious and extraordinarily diligent people and I will support them to the earth's end, and I would only hope that he would do the same for me. We will build each other up, learning and growing together. Success is not a scarce resource, like kindness, sprinkle that sh*t everywhere. One's success does not limit your own so you should never see another as a competitor. We can all make it big. It makes me so happy to see my friends accomplish things, it is a very strong positive vibe which I feed off and I hope others can feed off too. Remember, true confidence means you do not fear failure because you know what you are capable of and it is only a matter of time before you achieve your success. 'If you try, and fail, congratulations. Most people won't even try.'
People think confidence is looking strong and bad-ass, with some serious attitude (Demi Lovato's music video case in point). However this article is about being confident in 'being yourself'. Confidence isn't walking into a room thinking you're better than everyone, it's walking in not having to compare yourself to anyone at all. So here, this is me, cheery and bubbly with a partial 'I don't give a f*ck" attitude'. I'm getting there brother, I'm getting there.
Brandy Melville ALIZA Slip Dress / Converse Chuck Taylor All Stars Sneakers