Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Building Confidence (2)

DSC06104  What did girls do before there were digital cameras?

Some days I feel like the world is simply a backdrop for them to take pictures of one another.  They are constantly posing, clicking, arranging, directing one another, then huddling and giggling over the results.

At first, I thought it was simply youthful narcissism: today's version of preening in the mirror.  But, beyond that, there is an element of encouraging one another: look where we are, see how good we look, don't we own the street?

Confidence, again.

It reminded me of how many times I pushed my own limits because I had a friend to share it with.  My best friends in life have been people who I could trust, talk, and laugh with; kindred souls who I shared experiences with and who challenged me when I became a bit stuffy.

We built stories and told tales, a library filled with anecdotes of close times happily shared with friends over the years.

A good friend keeps me from taking myself or life too seriously, and gives me the ideas and encouragement to stray out of the box and into new fields of experience.  And, classically, friendship-induced bravado is central to approaching a girl I'd never consider as being in my league otherwise (no matter how tall).

So, on the road to becoming confident adults, we not only need mentors to show the way, we need our friends along for the journey.


Nick said...

Dave, confidence is a delicate thing, isn't it? It takes a long time to build but can be destroyed very quickly. My father had a dozen ways of undermining my confidence and making me feel inadequate and I've never really got over that however many people seem to accept me and appreciate me. I hope your daughter is brimming with confidence and ready for anything! Oh, and thanks for the link!

Dave Hampton said...

It really is: I am literally sitting on my hands and not interfering with their exploration and discovery. We'd planned to go to Dusseldorf today, but they wanted to explore Amsterdam on tehir own, and it was a perfect opportunity for me to stand back and let them stumble and succeed.

I'm a regular reader, Nick: keep up the great work.