Wednesday, May 11, 2011

On Confidence

I've had the chance to observe a young man who's become very dear to me. He's college age, tall, slim, handsome, intelligent, thoughtful, considerate, and very much an old soul - wise in many ways beyond his years. Yet for all this, he laments the lack of interest he gets from the opposite sex.

I've seen newspaper and magazine articles recently that would have you believe that no-strings-attached sex is the universally-accepted norm among kids, and that a blowjob is to them what a goodnight kiss was to me at that age. That may well be true for some, but it's not universal.

My observation is that the opposite sex does notice him, but he doesn't realize that they're noticing him. It breaks my heart to see, because he reminds me of myself at that age. The issue, of course, is confidence. I'm *certain* that if he walked up to these young ladies and said "Hi, how are you?" that they'd be very pleased to talk to him.  But he sees that as completely out of the question.

Unfortunately, there's not a thing I can do to help. He's going to have to develop it (or realize it) all by himself. Again, I know this from painful experience. I knew back then that my issue was confidence - I had it in many areas of my life, but not around women.  I didn't feel it, and you cannot fake it. Lord knows I tried.

Another example from those days that drilled this lesson into me. My first job post-college was at a big consulting firm. On my first project, I worked with one of the ugliest men I've ever met - short, balding, bad complexion, goggle-eyed (he reminded me of a horror show verson of Kermit the Frog) - but very personable, and completely confident with women. And he got laid. Oh yes he did. It was one of the biggest shocks of my life.  I looked on in amazement and shook my head at the cruelty of the universe.

The quandry is that (unless you're part of that alien-to-me breed that's somehow born with confidence) you don't have success until you feel confident, but it takes a success to give you confidence. Once I had success, confidence followed immediately. And I never looked back. I hope my young friend will discover this soon.


  1. I understand that odd circular argument where success breeds confidence and vice versa (I think many women can relate to that concept). Perhaps it's also a matter of being comfortable in your own skin, finding your own unique brand of charm and wit and charisma. For me, that came about with age.

    In the end, I hope your friend accesses that confidence and his own uniquely wonderful qualities sooner rather than later because he sounds like quite the catch.

    Gorgeous post, Max...

  2. Is that young man Canadian perhaps? Tall & handsome is just my type!!!

    On a more serious note, confidence might be a result of good parenting? I never had much success with guys, but I'm still confident in myself. I wonder if my parents' liberal attitude gave that to me.

  3. i think confidence comes from an inner sense of self, as Cheeky said, being comfortable in your own skin. If I know who and what I am, rejection loses it's sting and I can put myself out there without relying on others to validate me.

  4. Very good post - confidence in one self is very important. Because if you trust and believe that you are smart, attractive, and exciting to be with, and you worked on these areas, you are (or will be).