Acharya Prashant, with students: How to have confidence in oneself?

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Question: I don’t have confidence in myself. How to gain it?

Acharya Prashant: The question comes from an extreme – “I do not have confidence in myself.” But surely, this question addresses a pain that all experience in varying degrees, on various occasions.

There is nobody who does not feel short of confidence at one point or another. There are many, who keep feeling perpetually short. There are others, who feel confident most of the time, but find that their confidence is deserting them often when they need it.

You say you want ‘confidence’ in yourself. You want confidence in yourself only when you are in doubt. When things are just flowing smoothly, is there need for confidence? When there is no fear, is there need for confidence?

Confidence is a medicine.

Confidence is not your natural state.

Just as, medicine is not health. When you feel sick, then you ask for medicine and the role of medicine should be to make itself unnecessary. You do not want to have a medicine that you will perpetually need. What you must rather perpetually have, is a normal and ordinary state of health. What you must normally have is a state of fearlessness, in which confidence is not needed at all.

If you are requiring confidence, it means that something has already gone wrong.

Now, do you want to cover up what has gone wrong? Or do you want to directly address what has gone wrong? Because if the wrong stays wrong, then you will keep on needing confidence more and more, and more frequently.

When you are addressing your friends, do you require confidence? No! But when you are making a public presentation, then you require confidence. Do you notice that? When you are with your family members, do you require confidence? Hardly ever! But when you are in front of an interviewer, then you say that you require confidence.

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Confidence is a disease

In fear, you feel that it might be lost. In confidence, you feel that there is no threat of it being lost.

Fear is the stage when the root has become a full-grown tree but the root of both ‘confidence’ and ‘fear’ is the same, giving importance to external attainments.

The question of confidence arises only when you are afraid. You see the linkage between ‘fear’ and ‘confidence.’ The one which is confident is surely afraid just that he is not realizing it at that point. If there is no fear, there is no need of confidence.

Confidence is the shadow of fear.

Confidence is a disease.

Don’t ask for confidence, ask for fearlessness.

The more the world will mean to you, the more afraid you will be.

Unfortunately, confidence is no treatment for fear.



Read the complete article: Acharya Prashant: Don’t ask for confidence, ask for fearlessness


 

Acharya Prashant: Don’t ask for confidence, ask for fearlessness

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Question: If a person has stage-fear, how can that person enhance or extract the ‘Inner-confidence?’

Acharya Prashant: Sit. See ‘confidence’ and ‘fearfulness,’ ‘confidence’ and ‘fear’ these two are actually the two names for the same state of mind. Fearfulness says, “I’m at the risk of losing something important that something important can be anything – money, security, respect whatever relationship.” Confidence says, “these things are important but I’m not at the risk of losing them.” What is common in between confidence and fear?

I am repeating, pay attention now! Fear says, “what I have from the world is important and is at a risk of getting lost.” Confidence says, “what I have from the world is of course, important but it is not at the risk of getting lost.” Now, what is common between ‘confidence’ and ‘fear?’

Listener: Acharya Ji, the dependency on the world.

AP: Both says, “what I have from the world is surely important.”

In fear, you feel that it might be lost.

In confidence, you feel that there is no threat of it being lost.

But remember, this feeling of no threat depends on time. What is not threatened right now, will be threatened after five minutes or after five days. Confidence will surely turn into fear because you have already made the basic preparation to be ‘afraid.’ The basic preparation to be afraid is, the thought that what the world has given to me is, ‘important.’

The root is there. Confidence is the point when the root has yet not expressed itself into the tree. The root is there. The tree is invisible. It has yet not come forth.

Fear is the stage when the root has become a full-grown tree but the root of both ‘confidence’ and ‘fear’ is the same, giving importance to external attainments.

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Remain easy, remain free, and you won’t need any confidence

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Acharya Prashant: What is meant by saying that confidence is fear? And secondly, does it practically help me to know this?

Both are related. You see if you really come to understand it, then the question of the application of your understanding becomes redundant. Because whatever you do is anyway and application of the mind. It’s like asking that if I lose disease, if I regain health, what would be the practical application of that health? Continue reading

Living in inferiority complex.

If I really know that I am beautiful, you cannot make me feel ugly — but I must then be in total sureness.
I cannot be in total sureness if I am worrying a lot about my business, if it means a lot to me, because in worrying a lot about the state of my business, I am actually worrying a lot about my capacity to handle my business, which means I am not very sure of my own capacity to live with the business, to manage it, to come out unharmed, untouched by it. I take business now as a challenge, as something that can really overpower me or dominate me. It now becomes something very meaningful. Now, I have given it a place that it does not deserve. Now, I have made it some kind of an equivalent of Truth and when something becomes an equivalent of Truth, you become too small in front of it.
That is called living in inferiority complex.
When you are feeling inferior, then even an innocuous touch can hurt you. The other one had no intention to rub you the wrong way but you find that you have been bruised for no reason. It has nothing to do with the intention of the other person. It has much more to do with your own self-concept.
At the risk of sounding impractical, let me suggest that one must treat all business with a little contempt. All business! Even the business of life and death. When you can treat all business with a little contempt, then the business is not bigger than you, then the business is not your God or Truth. Now you are bigger and bigger you indeed are.


Further Reading:

The Flying Kiss to the Sky

cover_fksA Flying Kiss to The Sky, is a collection of excerpts from various discourses of Acharya Prashant, arranged in a special order which makes it the ideal first book, for all who want to come close to the facts of their own lives.

The book is divided into three parts, each part helping the reader to appreciate the working of his own mind and hence, the world in more clear and precise terms. Its unique one-page-one-chapter format makes it even more simple. It won’t be wrong to say that it is a book for all: Reader, or non-reader; Professional, or Spiritual.

Paperback: Advait Publications Page

You are still standing within the room

It does not matter whether you are standing in the middle of the room, or at the edge of the room.

You are still standing within the room.

All your efforts, all your movements, are limited to the boundary of the room.

You cannot breach that boundary on your own.

So, bow down in prayer.

You will have to give yourself up.

Acceptance does not mean compromise

You cannot accept yourself without accepting the totality of existence.

When you are complaining against everything, how can you be alright with yourself?

When you are offended and hurt by everything, how can you be alright with yourself?

People talk about accepting themselves, but accepting themselves is never in isolation.

It has to come with an acceptance of everything and acceptance does not mean compromise.

Acceptance means “Whatever there is, in the middle of all of it, I am okay; there might be diseases all around, but in the middle of diseases, I am healthy. Diseases can never touch my core, my essence. It might even touch my body, but it can never touch my soul.”

This is that inner confidence.

Now you do not need to wear make-up.