We often treat psyche anatomically. We all know that inside our bodies there are different organs: liver, kidneys, heart, muscles, stomach, etc. When the organ is healthy, you feel good. When it does not function fine, we are repairing it–taking pills or using some other therapy. Each body part, although you cannot see most of them, is material and touchable (at least for the surgeon).
In a somehow similar way, people treat their minds. We cannot see self-confidence, optimism or positive attitude, but we assume that inside our mind is something like an organ responsible for it. When something goes wrong, look for we are looking for some kind of treatment.
Do I feel timid? I need to repair my self-confidence. Do I feel a depressive mood? I need to repair my optimism. Do I feel discouraged? I have to repair my motivations, etc.
But we do not have psychological organs. We do not have inside us anything like self–confidence and optimism or attitude. It does not mean they are unimportant and easy to change. It means that sometimes the therapeutic approach is less than optimal.
Then what is self-confidence or attitude?
Something a bit similar to the web page. When you see words, photos, colors or design, you could assume that the page is written somewhere on a distant computer disc. It used to be in this way, pages were written on in HTML code and stored on servers. The webpage was like a document in a drawer. Someone had put it there and it stayed, even no one read it. It was called static pages.
Today it all works in a different, active way. When nobody reads the page, it does not exist. Every time you connect with the page address, the page is constructed especially for you. On the server, there are two things: a database with sources of information (images, words, etc.) and a set of instructions (called a computer program or software). Every time someone requests the page it is constructed according to these instructions.
Something similar works in our heads. There is no drawer with prepared earlier (during childhood presumably) psychological features, but rather a set of instructions and sources of information.
Your self-confidence, boldness, motivation or any attitude is constructed in every situation from scratch.
If our software and data sources are stable, the effects are the same. But when one of these will change, the result will change as well.
Software is very hard to change (there is no mind-programming, and so cold neuro-linguistic programming is a scam).
But what is possible to change is a database–our source of information. And indeed, we change it almost every day. Don’t you feel in one situation self-confident and in others unsure? In one situation optimistic, in other downhearted? In one setting bold and assertive and eloquent, and in another contrary the opposite?
Your mind constructor took different sources of information and made something else.
There are many other sources of information that are taken into account during constructing self–confidence: memories, concepts, social influences, other mental processes, or sensual and emotional experiences.
If you know what kind of information sources it takes into account during construction self-confidence, you can change it.
In the next days, we will look closer at the five most important sources taken into account during the construction of our self-confidence.