While the concept of narcissism dates back thousands of years, narcissistic personality disorder only became recognised as a mental illness within the last 2 decades. But how did narcissism come to be?
Working as a communication skills trainer in Asia and Europe for the last 20 years, brought me into contact with many people who shared a common ‘worst fear’: public speaking. “Why public speaking?” I would enquire. The answer is always a fear of rejection. “Rejected for what?” I’d probe. The answers I’d hear were often a resounding fear of not being good enough, others’ judgement or for not delivering what the audience expects of them.
I’ve worked with several clients on confidence (or lack thereof). After many years of learning what the real meaning of confidence is, I recognise myself as an expert in this specific aspect.
Confidence is not as simple as it seems. There are many complexities and a spectrum of meanings within the definition of confidence. It involves attitudes, beliefs and behaviours that often aren’t innate gifts and need to be nurtured, practiced and/or acquired.
We often hear about and come across the term vision boards and visualising. We might know the benefits of using tools as such and we might not. But often we aren’t aware of the correlation between vision boarding and confidence. Even more so than a vision board, an inventory. Taking inventory of the past year is a useful tool. How do these tools come to play with confidence? Well, they help you to practice observing your actions and perhaps inactions and in so doing, practice becoming more confident in yourself.
I believe we are living in a very exciting and powerful time. You may not agree with this of course, we’re different human beings with different backgrounds, experiences and different conditioning. We’re allowed to see things in different ways and no one would be bad or wrong for doing so.
Why do I think it’s an exciting and powerful time? I feel that on the deepest level of consciousness, a radical spiritual transformation is taking place in a universal scale. We’re all in some way being challenged to let go of our present way of living and create a new one in its place.
Through my own studies and life experience over the years, I came to realise that we can be compulsive and addicted to any kind of relationship, even one with a friend or colleague. The most detrimental reality is that often we don’t or can’t recognise it and can live a life going through toxic relationship cycles until we die.
Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP) teaches us that a simple change of words can make the difference in how we speak to ourselves and others. This is because of the nature of the words, for example, ‘lessons’ or ‘experiences’ are far less judgemental than ‘mistakes’. The knowledge that the effect that language and empowering words has on boosting and transforming our reality is not exclusive to NLP practitioners or trainees.
98% of the Earth’s population is not self-actualised, according to Abraham Maslow. They therefore, act out from a space of unconditional or ‘inauthentic love’ for themselves and others. I believe that, no matter how much self-empowerment work I put myself through, becoming a self-actualised or authentic human being is a never ending process.
Happiness is being aware of our own gifts. To do so requires us to build awareness around our strengths and flaws, our light and our shadow. And once we've developed that kind of awareness, happiness is about making use of and sharing what we have discovered and built for ourselves with others so that they may learn and build happiness for themselves.