Paradox of self-confidence



Nothing is more mysterious than self-confidence. Everyone can experience the fragility of this feeling at different times in their life. It often happens to me to doubt my own ability to do, to undertake or to respond to the projects, the requirements that I have set for myself. Strange paradox. I then become the traitor of myself. I don’t trust myself anymore. I no longer recognize myself being true to myself or to the promise I made to myself. I lack the strengths, but what strengths are these? It is never a collapse, a violent crisis, but always very little in appearance. A concern without a defined object. Silent discouragement. Something has faded from the image I have of myself, from my inner mirror. No doubt this was what the ancients designated by the wordsoul psukhin ancient Greek, breath, life, soul. Our psyche, that is to say the mirror of ourselves, the interior reflection of our desire for life, and in which sometimes we no longer recognize ourselves.

We are talking about strength of soul. Without it, I no longer support myself. The self I was counting on has slipped away. It is an often obscure country, sometimes even hostile. But the fragility of such a feeling is undoubtedly due to the confidence itself which presupposes precisely, in order to “trust”, to accept not to know everything, not to have only one certainty that oneself, and to accept to believe other than me. Trusting, I don’t rely on my own anymore strength. Isn’t that all the ambiguity of “self-confidence”? For there to be confidence, there must be otherness. And, in my sadness at no longer finding in myself the strength to believe in my own strength, I come to think that for there to be “self-confidence”, we must first welcome and recognize otherness. in myself. I’m not always who I think I am. And I will only find confidence in myself by taking the risk of not knowing or wanting everything about me. Difficult balance.

But confidence will only come back in the confidence to address yourself to others as yourself. Self-confidence is no longer self-assurance, or certainty in one’s own value, but this human capacity, at the root of all culture, to believe in oneself in the work of others, in the confidence that one puts in the other. I can only have confidence in myself if my confidence is projected towards the other, in the work of the other. And conversely, what I myself create, who I am, can only be of value to me for other. This is also what Jesus suggests in the Gospel of Luke, who asks: “When the Son of mankind comes, will he really find confidence on earth? “ (Luke 18, 8-14). But what trust is it? In response, Jesus offers his listeners the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector who go up to the Temple to pray. It is, according to the Gospel, to give this example “To those who believed themselves to be righteous and who despised others”. The first, the Pharisee, sure of himself and of his righteousness, justifies himself before God: “I fast twice a week, I pay tithing on everything I earn. “ He declares to be ” different from the others “ and thank God for it. I’m better than the tax collector, he said. He who does not dare “Not even raise your eyes to heaven, but slap your chest saying: God, be favorable with me, I have faulted”. And it is he, the Pharisee’s despised tax collector, who has the least confidence in himself, and confesses it in his prayer and repentance, who is justified, Jesus explains. His trust is based on the other and his listening, more than on himself. His self-confidence is to trust the other to heal his own shortcomings.

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