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Best books on confidence?

Hello guys,

what are the best books you have read on confidence? I read Lucio's review about the "Confidence code".

I listened to a lot of Georges Saint-Pierre's interviews and he says that confidence (either real or faked) is a major determinant in defending against bullying and succeeding in Life.

Thanks!

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Kellvo

While the subject is on dating instead of confidence, Mark Manson's Models covers self-confidence (calling it 'non-neediness') by explaining that its part of living life by your values, being upfront and honest about your desires and intentions, and as part of developing an overall high-quality lifestyle.

The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem is a book I just found, which I heard a lot about. It explains how self-esteem is formed by both internal and external factors, breaking it down into six pillar practices that build a foundation of healthy self-image.

Finally, of course, there is our Ultimate Power book here, but we already know that 😉

 

Thanks Kellvo for your answer. I read Branden’s book a long time ago and I agree it’s a foundational reading on self-esteem.  I think non-neediness actually refers to secure attachment rather than anxious attachment.

What I am talking about is confidence. Confidence is more about doing than being. One is confident in one’s ability to succeed in a given action. So there is an overlap with skills. I also think there is an overlap with dominance. That is why when many women say they want a confident man I think they mean a dominant man with skills.

What I am talking about here is the skill of confidence itself. The ability to have confidence in one’s ability to accomplish any given action. It’s a meta-cognitive skill I believe. Like the skills of believing, desire or detachment for instance.

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Lucio BuffalmanoKellvo

"The Confidence Code" is a good one.

Skills is definitely intertwined with confidence, like John says.

I can remember several times when I was very "confident" without skills, and fell on my ass big time.
For example, in middle school we went for our first "white week" with the school, learning to ski on the nearby mountain. I publicly proclaimed I was going to win the little race planned on the last day.
Like... No doubt, who else is gonna win that.
Well, let's say that... It didn't exactly turned out that way. And I still remember how embarrassed I was when the ranking was publicly announced at the evening's celebration -the rankings were announced starting from the last :)-.

traits like self-esteem and self-compassion also overlap with confidence, and help make it more "antifragile".

The way I see it, confidence is one of those things that, in large part, must ensue from other aspects and mindsets.

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Matthew WhitewoodStef
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Quote from Kellvo on November 5, 2020, 8:42 pm

The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem is a book I just found, which I heard a lot about. It explains how self-esteem is formed by both internal and external factors, breaking it down into six pillar practices that build a foundation of healthy self-image.

I am thinking of reading the book The Six Pillars of Self-Esteem by Nathaniel Branden.
I searched and checked out the book reviews on this website.
I don't think it has been reviewed.

I am quite interested in reading books that touch on self-concept in psychology.
This website defines self-image to be part of self-concept.

A person’s self-image is based on how they see themselves, while self-concept is a more comprehensive evaluation of the self, largely based on how a person sees themselves, values themselves, thinks about themselves, and feels about themselves.

From this definition, I'm not sure if it's useful to have 2 separate definitions.
Because I would think "how you see yourself" to include "how you value yourself", "how you think about yourself" and "how you feel about yourself".

List of Books on Self-Concept

This link has a few books that come to mind.
I think Lucio has given reviews on some of the books.
The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown has been covered by Lucio in this thread.

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Lucio Buffalmano

Yeah, maybe we could consider "The Gifts of Imperfection" in the sense of self-acceptance as a contributor to confidence.

Though I'm not this huge fan of confidence based on "accepting the gifts of your imperfection", which is one of the reasons why I removed the book from the main website.
The gifts seem to me like the good old pat on the back saying "you're good enough".
I see it as the equivalent of "you can do it" type of encouragement and self-help.
It's not based on an antifragile ego, and not on strong (thought) processes.

I might be biased though.
I see these types of books as selling good for women, but not the best for those who want to reach goals in life.

Edit: I most likely biased actually.
I'm not a big fan of Brene'. It reminds of the emotional intelligence test we talked about recently that left out malevolence and manipulation. It's truncated, half-good self-help, and the other real-world half is missing.
She over-focuses on feelings, feelings, and vulnerability, without talking about the downsides. Especially not good for men.

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Matthew Whitewood
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Quote from Lucio Buffalmano on May 12, 2021, 8:47 pm

Yeah, maybe we could consider "The Gifts of Imperfection" in the sense of self-acceptance as a contributor to confidence.

Though I'm not this huge fan of confidence based on "accepting the gifts of your imperfection", which is one of the reasons why I removed the book from the main website.
The gifts seem to me like the good old pat on the back saying "you're good enough".
I see it as the equivalent of "you can do it" type of encouragement and self-help.
It's not based on an antifragile ego, and not on strong (thought) processes.

It does sound like a person who is patronising oneself.
It's like telling a friend that he has lots of imperfections and that's okay without a productive exchange on how to make things better.
It does not have the empowering feeling of maximising your potential.

I'm not a big fan of Brene'. It reminds of the emotional intelligence test we talked about recently that left out malevolence and manipulation. It's truncated, half-good self-help, and the other real-world half is missing.
She over-focuses on feelings, feelings, and vulnerability, without talking about the downsides. Especially not good for men.

I see what you mean.
I think that it will be especially detrimental in the workplace with the cut-throat competition.

Imagine talking to a boss on feelings rather than results.
For most bosses, he will start to think

Why did I hire this guy?

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Lucio Buffalmano
Quote from Matthew Whitewood on May 14, 2021, 7:05 am

It does sound like a person who is patronising oneself.
It's like telling a friend that he has lots of imperfections and that's okay without a productive exchange on how to make things better.
It does not have the empowering feeling of maximising your potential.

Exactly, it feels to me like "feel good self-help".

Can be useful too, but not by itself.

And yes to the second part as well, not good for goal-based life efforts or environments.

Edit:
But I might be overly biased here because I see half-good messages as potentially risky for people who get into self-development and stops at that type of self-help.
And without throwing out the baby with the bad water, a base of self-acceptance is also a great thing to have or strive for.

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Matthew Whitewood
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And without throwing out the baby with the bad water, a base of self-acceptance is also a great thing to have or strive for.

I think the part of self-acceptance helps people.
In this sense, they would be more willing to look at their imperfections and mistakes.

Though the problem is, as you said, feeling good about the imperfections.
This builds your self-esteem around feeling good about ones' imperfections and encourages a fixed mindset.
The world will probably tell you otherwise quite fast.
This will result in some cognitive dissonance.

The radical candor approach is much tougher emotionally but helps you to see your imperfections more objectively and encourages a growth mindset.
It is okay to look objectively that you don't want to improve upon a certain area because we all have only so much time & attention.
Though I would not say that you should feel good about it.

When This Book May Be Useful

I agree that this book can be used as a stepping stone if you don't have clear mindsets to start with.
Though it is risky as you say if you continue building your mindset around the concept of feeling good about imperfections in the long term.

Maybe there can be a ladder of mindsets in the journey of self-development.
It can be challenging to leap into an anti-fragile ego and growth mindset right away.
This type of feel-good self-acceptance could be useful for people who are in denial about their situation.

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Lucio Buffalmano
Quote from Matthew Whitewood on May 15, 2021, 10:48 am

Though the problem is, as you said, feeling good about the imperfections.
This builds your self-esteem around feeling good about ones' imperfections and encourages a fixed mindset.
The world will probably tell you otherwise quite fast.
This will result in some cognitive dissonance.

Yes, it encourages a false narrative of "accept your defects", with the implied assumption that "the world will do the same, and you'll be alright".

The world accepts all the defects you have... You might just achieve less if you don't also work on some other qualities to offer.
So if you want to maximize or achieve something in life, you must also work on something in life. And that might run against the ethos of "accept all that you are, because you're great just as you are".

At the end of the day, life is an exchange based on value.
And those who work on themselves to provide more value, also give more to the world.

If your value proposition is "I am my defects, I'm cool with them, and you must be cool with it as well", then that to me is not only bad self-help, but it's also  lazy, selfish (of the bad kind), and entitled (of the bad kind).

In sum, self-love and self-acceptance on an otherwise development-focused individual who works on himself and focuses on adding value is great.
Self-love sold to the masses as a panacea to all their woes and a shortcut to happiness and success, that feels like half-good self-help, and half a lie.

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