Insecurity, Confidence and other Stuff

I had a great conversation with Elsa’s mom after the Internship presentations.  We were talking about many hard things we had been through as her kids grew up in the gym.

She commented on appreciating the confidence that I had in what I was doing as a coach and I responded with, “I think I am confident because I know how insecure I am.  I am insecure probably 75% of the time if not more, but the fact that I know where I am at gives me the confidence to keep moving”

She then responded, well, you are probably insecure that much because you are pushing yourself.

This caused a ton of thinking the rest of my night and I had an epiphany.  Unfortunately, Websters dictionary doesn’t back up my epiphany, but I’ll share it because it seems so clear to me.  The epiphany is about the difference between insecurity and a lack of confidence.

I see insecurity and lack of confidence very different.  Insecurity seems very situational.  It seems to be there to make sure you don’t just leap out too far and fall off some edge where you can’t return.  Insecurity can be a great motivator.  Lack of confidence seems more systemic.  It prevents you from moving.  It makes you doubt in debilitating ways.  I am confident.  I believe in myself and I trust myself and the older I get, the more certain and confident I am getting.  However, I feel insecure all the time.  I am constantly checking in with myself to see if I am going about things the best way, am I good enough at what I do, how can I be better, will others believe in me, do I measure up to people I view in high standard and a million other questions.  

I have to ask myself these questions, because as a business owner and as a coach I am always in a place of uncertainty.  I am always in unknown situations.  I am rarely in control, (if ever) and I am always having to adjust to personalities and needs of others.  I never know how a situation will turn out, but I do know that I have put in all the training I possibly can to approach it.

When I was a competitive boxer, I lacked confidence.  It was more than insecurity.  The exposure and lack of confidence kept me from reaching the beating the very top of my sport.  I was good but I was not great.  I was a formidable foe, but I was not the top notch champions that Mary Jo Sanders, Holly Holm, Melissa Hernandez, Layla McCarter and countless others were and in some cases still are.  My lack of confidence kept me from believing in what I could achieve.

I look at the difference between my coaching confidence and competitive boxing confidence and there is no comparison.  In coaching I am certain of my abilities to lead into the unknown.  I am confident about hanging out in the unknown.  I am certain and confident that each and every moment will catapult all of us into new realms if we open up to the possibilities.  I am confident I will do my best in the moment and if I fail, I am confident I will not fail the same way again.  

This past weekend I had a boxer literally hit the mat in the second round.  For a moment I felt like a failure.  Like I had made the wrong choice in his match.  But after I was able to talk about it with several folks and really get a handle on the experience, I realized that my boxers also have to be able to understand the difference between anxiety/insecurity vs a lack of confidence.  They have to know where they are at in the moment.  They have to know what their difference is between insecure and lack of confidence.  If they can know right where they are and I know right where I am, we are going to have an amazing experience and we will be able to move forward with certainty.



About arcaroboxinggym

Boxing gym for recreational and competitive boxers. Community minded and locally inspired. Seattle Small Business Supporter
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