Lately I have been thinking about confidence. I know two people who give the impression of having it in spades. And I have to wonder at how they display it so differently and yet confidence in of itself is the same characteristic. Two young men, one confidence. Or is it?
One man, we’ll call him ‘Harry’, always wears a smile. A confident, friendly smile. He carries an easy air, he sets most people at ease around him. In a word, he is likeable. His persona is much like this: “Hey, I’ve got this.” And he usually does. However, when things start to look dark, he appears more to say: “Hey, I’ve still got this. I will work around it, over it, under it or through it, but I’ve got it.”
A flexible confidence, learned no doubt by life’s experiences. I personally think as long as Harry does not become conceited, he will go far.
Now we also have ‘Ollie’, perhaps a few years older than Harry. Ollie oozes confidence like a leaking helium balloon. In the set jaw, squared shoulders, sardonic grin and swinging gait, he all but jabs a finger in your chest with his: “I have got this.” confidence. No words are necessary. The ones that do come usually reinforce the psychical manifestations. And like Harry, Ollie also usually does have this. He has the world by the tail. Don’t get in Ollie’s way.
Now here is where it gets interesting, at least to me. If anyone were to ask about them, they would hear they are both friendly. However, Harry has a genuine friendliness, almost with a hint of self caution plus honesty thrown in there. The kind of person you want for a friend. Ollie, now dear Ollie’s friendliness is as fake as fifty-five dollar bill. I can almost hear someone whispering in his head years ago, a grandparent perhaps, saying: ‘Boy, if you’re going to BS someone, make darn sure they know it.’
So that leaves me to ponder this–confidence is a trait we all have to varying degrees. Some have much in certain areas and little in others Some have little in most areas. Some are spread all over the map. Some are like Harry and Ollie, carrying it like their personal school colors. Yet it is how they display it on a day-to-day, regular basis that is at the core of their confidence. When faced with a task, they know they ‘have it’. If they harbor doubts, the rest of the world won’t see it So when we are faced with a task, are we a Harry or a Ollie?