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cracking the code of confidence

Dan Brown’s ability to crack a Da Vinci code may entitle him to bragging rights amongst many social circles – me on the other hand, not so much. I am a modest soul – will admit to having the mathematical aptitude of a newt, and a mechanical understanding that stops at changing a tyre. Cracking codes is simply not my forte.

But to crack the code of confidence, you don’t need a degree. Merely a lifetime of experience, whether it be an ability to, in the moment, convince others (and yourself) that you’re as cool and collected as a book of stamps (even when you’re not). Some others are able to suppress negative self-talk at the crucial moment, or, seemingly more common, is the tendency to express a complete lack of self-awareness, thus enabling an individual to function without regard for anyone but themselves.

Regardless of the source, it’s something we all aspire to obtain – the golden egg at top of the beanstalk. Success in life, it would seem, is partly determined by how much confidence you exude. Whether in yourself, your relationships, your career, or even just while walking down the street. And this is what fascinates me: where do the boundaries lie between confidence and approachability, integrity and un-affectedness? While it’s a constant work in progress, something I’m yet to do is crack the code in its entirety so that I don’t succumb to the odd blush, bumble or, what has been pointed out in my junior years, regress to a former ‘like’ affliction – close your eyes and I’m Becky from Little Britain.

When asked what we find particularly attractive in a potential partner, I’m willing to bet that 9 times out of 10, most people elect confidence as one of the biggest winners. Heck, I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t counseled my brother, friends and even myself on the importance of exuding the alluring scent of parfum a la confidence as a tip for attracting the opposite sex. Something my wooden-spoon waving housemate pointed out rather recently in a heated debate over why it is that I need to grow a pair, stop questioning myself and get on with things. Noted.

Admittedly, before being brandished with a macaroni-encrusted utensil, I already knew this myself – a realisation made apparent by the knowledge that a past failed relationship went pear shaped after my ‘c’ reserves momentarily diminished. While I too am attracted to confidence, it has been my experience to date that finding such an attribute in an individual where it hasn’t replaced a more attractive sense of humility, is a rare thing. I remain quietly confident though that such individuals do exist and just finding them will, similar to cracking Monsieur Da Vinci’s code, take time, self-development and a lifetime of experience.

(Image credit: 1.)

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