Having a healthy level of confidence means that you feel sure about your abilities and what you can do. You like who you are as a person, and you respect yourself. Confidence means that you can see the value of being you. Having confidence is terrific and what most people strive for. But, there are 10 types of people who will destroy your confidence. They won't necessarily do it on purpose. But still, you need to know how to protect yourself so you can keep feeling good about yourself.
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Confidence is important. How you view yourself guides what you believe and how you feel. It also impacts how others feel about you. Sadly, there are some types of people that can latch onto your confidence and drain it dry.
You'll want to protect yourself against these kinds of people. Sometimes, that means making the difficult decision to distance yourself from these people. No one should ever lose confidence and stop feeling good because of someone else. Ever.
Types of people who can destroy your confidence
Those that destroy your confidence with negativity
This is a confidence drain that is often found in conversations. You can recognise it because the person will try to make you feel bad about yourself. The words sound okay but are said in such a way that they erode how you think about yourself.
An example of a negativity drainer would be, “Your dress is beautiful. It would look better on you if you’d lose a few pounds.” This is the sucker punch conversation.
The first part of it was kind, so you felt relaxed and open. The blow comes next, catching many people off guard. It affects our confidence because we internalise it. We end up making the comments about us alone, instead of the person who said it.
You can get rid of drains like this by saying in return, “That’s kind of personal. Why would you say something like that?” The person can only walk away with your confidence if you allow it.
People who tell you that you’re ugly, or fat or stupid or worthless will destroy your confidence. Don’t give them another second of your time. Don’t put up with these types of comments.
You’re not their beliefs. Those statements are a reflection of them, not you. But what’s worse than those kinds of negative people is when we become our own negativity bank.
We tell ourselves that we’re ugly or fat or stupid or worthless. We erode our confidence ourselves. No one is born with this kind of self-talk.
If you adopt this negative self-talk, you'll find your quality of life deteriorating.
Those who destroy your confidence with social media
This has become a considerable confidence drain. It’s growing bigger and sucking the confidence from millions of people. Social media opened the door for so many people to become drains.
They bully, and they tear down others, they drain away at the confidence of others to build themselves up. They say snarky comments to people that sting way down deep.
Most people take the comments of perfect strangers to heart. They don’t take the time to recognise the comments for what they were. Which is the attitude from someone who doesn’t have the capacity for online maturity.
You have to ignore comments that try to tear you down on your social media sites. Many people are expert trolls, whose sole purpose is to cause friction online. It’s their form of entertainment.
Social media can be a confidence drain if it causes you to look at someone else’s life and wish that were your life. What you need to remember is that social media presents a false balance of life to the world. I have to be honest and say that this is why The Happy Journals is not on Instagram. It is also, in part, why I stepped away from Twitter.
You only get a peek at people's lives on social media. The perfect house and the ideal family. The smiles and laughter and heavily edited photos don’t show the real picture. Don’t let these false representations tear down your confidence.
Much of social media is embellished because it is easier to present a better version of life online. And it often dramatically differs from reality. Keep in mind that many people are too self-conscious to speak up about the sad side of their lives.
Those who use your mistakes to destroy your confidence
You wouldn’t be human if you didn’t make mistakes. Some people make a lot of little mistakes, while others make mistakes that are pretty big. But you must realise that the mistakes that you’ve made do not define who you are.
They’re not a picture of your future. Mistakes are merely something that happened that can offer you the opportunity to learn. The confidence drain presents itself in this area by not allowing you to move on.
When we make mistakes, it’s often those closest to us who won’t let it go. They remind you of your mistake, and it can feel like they’re rubbing your nose in it. They remind you how you tried to start a business and failed. How you ruined your finances. How they warned you that the guy or girl you were crazy about was terrible news.
Hearing about your mistakes in this way can be hard to take. But even more so when you’re the one reminding yourself. You remind yourself of how you failed.
Oh, how you wish you hadn’t done what you did. Get rid of this confidence drain once and for all by telling yourself that it’s over. It is time to move on in the right direction.
Tell others the same thing if they keep bringing it up. Don’t drag your mistakes around with you and don’t let others pile them on you, either. Take a firm stance against having the past thrown in your face to knock you down as you try to better your life.
The approval seeker who will destroy your confidence
Some people have a laid back personality. Others have a more forceful personality. Both can have strengths to offer. But it is possible for someone with a stronger personality to "decide" what your life should or shouldn’t be.
They try to make it so that you have to seek their approval in every aspect of your life. When you try to do something on your own, they’re quick to tell you why that won’t work and how it’s not smart of you to attempt it.
What this does is erode your confidence until you’re driven to come to them for advice and help. These kinds of drains keep you dependent on them for your happiness (and theirs). You will end up surrendering control of your life to them in return. If you allow it.
You don’t need the approval to be who you are and to live the kind of life you’ve always wanted. Your actions are your own, and you’re smart enough to reach for your dreams without having to seek approval.
If you don’t know the way that you want to go, take a deep breath and relax. You will learn. Yes, you are capable. No, you don’t need anyone else’s stamp of approval for your path.
Those who use comparison to destroy your confidence
This nasty confidence drain is one that we put on ourselves, and we all have trouble with this one. It can destroy your confidence pretty quickly. It can leave you feeling unhappy with your life - even if you have a pretty good one.
This drain makes you feel like you’re not doing a good enough job because your life fails to measure up to someone else’s. Even a multi-millionaire can suffer from this as he compares himself to a billionaire.
The comparison drain piles on us when we feel jealous of someone else.
We can experience jealousy because they appear to have a partner who treats them better.
We can feel jealousy because their house is more beautiful. Their car is newer. Their clothes are more expensive. Maybe they have a better job. Perhaps they can afford to do home renovations that you wish you could do.
They get to take lavish vacations to places that you’ve dreamed of going. This kind of comparison robs you of living your life. You don’t know what’s going on in someone else’s life and looking at it from the outside can often give you a distorted view.
It could be that you have more freedom than they do. That you’re not in debt like they are. Or that you’re not dealing with the emotional situations they’re hiding from the world. You never know what’s honestly going on with someone else.
Get rid of this drain by recognising and being grateful for the good that you have in your own life. Refuse to allow negativity to tower over someone else’s seemingly good fortune.
Caring what others think of you can destroy your confidence.
This drain steals our confidence before we even know its happening. Sometimes we assume that people are thinking thoughts about us that are less than kind. We believe that they’re having conversations and our names are cropping up.
In these conversations, nothing good is being said. They’re surely discussing the way that we look. They’re talking about how weak our products are. They’re talking about rumours they’ve heard about us.
Believing this makes us feel self-conscious and awkward. It robs us of what could be beautiful friendships and new opportunities. Because we shy away from these people or we keep them at arm’s length. We are afraid to say or do something that will give them more fuel to think about us or talk about us negatively.
You can get rid of this leech by realising that other people really aren’t dwelling on you or your life. Everyone is far too busy to keep up with someone else’s life. They have all they can handle on their own.
So don’t let yourself dwell on what you think others are saying. Worst-case scenario, you’re right – they are ridiculing you. So what? Other peoples’ opinions have no place in your life.
The Perfectionist can destroy your confidence.
This is the confidence drain that will not allow you room to truly live. When you let this drain to attach to your life, with it comes the waiting game.
You will have to wait until everything is perfect for you to make a move. It's likely you won’t take chances with new ideas because perfectionism doesn’t welcome mistakes.
You can begin to develop an all or nothing mentality. Perfectionism is a terrible leech because it can leave you feeling bruised inwardly. You’ll beat yourself up every time you make a mistake.
Since you will make mistakes as long as you’re alive, you’ll go through life thinking you’ll never do anything right. The perfectionism drain will convince you that you will never be good enough.
You’ll walk around believing that you’re a failure before you even attempt to do anything. This confidence drain keeps many people stuck in a life of wanting more. But they'll never have it because they would have to risk failure.
Those who love drama can destroy your confidence.
These drains take from you, destroy your confidence, and make you feel miserable. Many people are familiar with these types of people in their personal life.
They understand that people who take and never give back aren’t good for them. With a drama drain, whatever is going on their life is entirely the most important thing. You must help them deal with it immediately!
You have to put your personal or professional life on hold to bolster them up and keep them from going under. If you do, you get sucked in every time they need you.
This destroys your confidence when it reaches the point to where you can’t be there every time. Because it’s impacting your life negatively. Your significant other isn’t happy about the amount of time the drama takes you away.
You miss work, or you can’t concentrate on work because the drama drain is wrecking your time. Your boss tells you that you’re just not cutting it at work any more. Or a business partner feels let down by your lack of focus and commitment.
To deal with this confidence drain, you have to understand that for some people, the drama is a lifestyle. It may be true that they have problems, even a ton of problems. But if you’re always the one that rescues them, you’ve entered into a co-dependent relationship.
This drama usually comes from toxic friends or family. But it can also be people in your professional life - and if you don’t rush in to rescue them, they turn on you.
They’ll say that you’re not doing enough to help them. You’re not loaning them money, holding their hand, rushing over every time they call. They’ll slap ugly labels on you or tear you down.
You don’t have enough empathy. You’re mean. And you don’t love them enough. How can you be so selfish? When they say negative things about you, you can begin to believe the problem is you.
This is difficult if you’re dealing with several family members or acquaintances in a group who love drama. It can be a significant drain on you emotionally and physically.
When you’re always putting out fires for others, put your foot down and become unavailable. This will force them to handle things themselves – or find someone else to turn to instead of you.
Yes, it will frustrate them. They may even lash out. But that’s because they’re not comfortable handling their own life obstacles. You don’t want to enable them anymore.
Disempowerment can destroy your confidence.
When your confidence is healthy, you can speak boldly about who you are and what you do or want from life. Disempowerment happens when others don’t value what you do or what you want.
For example, someone may work hard because want to go to an Ivy League college. But if someone else says, “Oh they let anyone in there now” hard work and effort becomes devalued.
It steals your sense of accomplishment and pride. But you can also put this leech on yourself. If you’ve always wanted to run an online crafts business and someone asks you want to do, you may downplay it. Doing this can begin to deplete your confidence.
Don’t downplay your accomplishments or make light of your hard work. The problem is that this confidence drain causes can affect your perspective.
You can recognise if you’re disempowering yourself by how you speak about yourself or your life. If you say, “I wish I could start my own business,” this is a disempowering way of thinking. Instead, change that to “I am starting my own business.”
Trying to conform can destroy your confidence.
This is the confidence drain that looks at how things have been done and don’t see a way to do it any differently. Its strength is found in tradition. In the way that things have always been done instead of the idea that things could be better.
This drain destroys your confidence by insinuating that your ideas are foolish. By claiming there’s no way they’ll work because no one else has ever been able to achieve that.
You can talk yourself out of trying anything if you allow the conforming drain to dictate what you do or don’t do in life. You might hear this referred to as the road less travelled.
The reason the road isn’t taken and new ventures don’t get off the ground are because people are afraid to stand out. People are so scared to run with the idea that others say can’t be done or is different from the norm.
When you have an idea but tell yourself that it’s foolish or others tell you it’s silly, your confidence takes a hit. Because you can start to believe that you’re not as smart as others who’ve found success.
Start believing in innovation again. That’s how life changes for the better. Stop putting limitations on yourself and free yourself from all the chains that bind you.