Dealing With Confidence Issues

Last week I posted about reinvention. I imagine that ALL of us in one way or another will need have a need or desire to reinvent some aspect of our life. Whether it be habits, attitude, relationships, careers, an embouchure, or reed scrape – each of us will eventually succumb to the need for refinement or a complete change in direction.

Confidence Road Sign<–––– has been my reconstruction project for the last few years as I find myself at the crossroads (or the starting gate) of a wonderful music career. And yet, the “little voice” inside my head keeps trying to convince me that this will NEVER work for a variety of reasons. And that voice simply will NOT go away. Dave Matthews coined a phrase in Rhyme & Reason: “My head won’t leave my head alone. I don’t think it will ’till I’m six feet underground.”

I often feel the same way!

So I spend my time trying to figure out what causes this terrible spiraling cancer of inner doubt to happen. Is there a particular trigger that causes my self-doubt. I also look to others who have tackled this monster for guidance and advice for help with my own quest. This post is, perhaps, my way of paying a little of that forward. Not that I’ve conquered the giant, but I’ve made progress. Maybe some of this will help you too.

First a few quotes that give perspective:

” You cannot become who you need to be by remaining who you are.” – Max DuPree

“Life is 10 percent what you make it, and 90 percent how you take it.” ― Irving Berlin

“When it comes down to performance, that ‘little voice’ has no business being there. It was not contracted. You were contracted. You are the one in that audition. You are in that jury. Let that ‘little voice’ sing [or play] sometime and see how easy it is for them.”
– Joyce DiDonato

And this one:

“…early in the 1996 season I visualized winning the American League Most Valuable Player award and holding it above my head. I visioned winning the batting title and holding up that trophy, too. I visioned a .380 batting average. In my mind I could see the number, flashing and blinking on exit signs… .380… .380… .380.

That year I missed winning the MVP by three votes and won the batting title. Playing the game was the easy part. The real work was in the preparation.

Some nights when I go to bed I will tell myself, maybe 150 times, “I hit the ball solid. I hit the ball solid. What do I do for a living? I hit the ball solid.” I see the results from my mind’s eye out. I see myself from the fans’ perspective. From the manager’s view in the dugout. I picture myself on the field from different angles. I believe a champion wins in his mind first, then he plays the game, not the other way around.” – Alex Rodriguez

(from Mind Gym, by Gary Mack & David Casstevens)

It’s all in your head

Now many of you are Red Sox fans, or are caught up in the multiple PED scandals that A-Rod has gotten himself into. Lay those things aside for a minute and reread his quote because there is a LOT of wisdom there.

I have found that visualizing myself as a great performer, or teacher, or business-person, or parent goes a long way to helping to quiet that “little voice.” Couple this with dedicated and effective practice you will become a performer with Confidence!! And when that “little voice” appears to ruin your practice session, or that big performance you have ammo! You have already put in the work, and convinced yourself through positive visualization that the cancerous lies creeping into your head have no place in your brilliant performance.

You may also enjoy Joyce DiDonato’s video blog, where she shares many more insights on different aspects of her performance preparation and career. I especially like this video blog post:

Now What?

confidence word cloudI have found that my missing confidence lies in the middle of the big and little self-destructive thoughts and behaviors that we all struggle with. The secret is to persevere the journey until you reach that wonderful confidence that we all seek! And then remember the journey, and the success you found. Because you will, more than likely, need to make that journey again with a completely different road block!

RB

Posted in Music Education, Perspective, Practice | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Stay Calm and Reinvent Yourself

Kinda feeling freaked out lately. I’m getting to the point where I feel like things are just about to take off . . . and then they suddenly don’t. Not quite sure how to best manage those feelings, but this helped a little. Enjoy!

Video | Posted on by | Leave a comment

Wonderful Wednesday – Part II

service

Last week’s Wonderful Wednesday post got such a great reaction. I learned that the managers at the grocery store found out about last weeks post, and congratulated sweet Shellie. I’m glad that she was recognized for her small act of service.

Service Girl

This weekend, Child #2 decided that she was going to be “Service Girl” for the day. She dressed in a nice outfit, and carried around a small notebook while she looked for ways to serve. Every time she found an opportunity for service, she would either do it immediately with a warm, toothless smile, or write it down so she could serve later in the day. She insisted that we all call her Service Girl, and kept asking if there was any way that she could serve us.

Later that night while scarfing down a Fat Boy, she commented about how great she felt. She was SO pleased with her selfless day. I just loved watching my little sweetheart putting her own interests aside, and serve others. But as the day went on I noticed that serving is truly what she wanted to do.

Nice job Service Girl!!!

What does the scripture verse say?
“And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.” -Mark 8:34-35

My little girl learned what those verses mean in a simple, but profound way.

Please Share

There are SO many stories of selfless service out there. We should share them more often. What service have YOU seen today? Share your experiences in the comments section below!!
RB

BJ Bedont

Posted in Fatherhood | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Memorial Day

Memorial Day

Today I feel grateful for the many women and men that have fought to defend the freedoms that I, too often, take for granted.

My paternal Grandfather, Felix Bedont, was a Staff Sergeant stationed in Texas during the Korean War. Recently my maternal Grandfather, George Keil, passed away. He was stationed in Italy during WWII. From both sides of my family there is a strong sense of duty to God and country that I hope that I can add to in some small way.

So today as we go about our holiday activities, my hope is that we all pause to remember those who have sacrificed much to protect our nation. These are noble men and women.
TRUE Heroes.

Happy Memorial Day!!

RB

BJ Bedont

Posted in Posts | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Wonderful Wednesday

Out of the many different types of people in this world, two stand out to me: those who choose to be happy, and those who choose to be unhappy. Contrary to popular belief, happiness doesn’t come from fame, fortune, other people, or material possessions. Rather, it comes from within. The richest person in the world could be miserable while a person living in the slums of a third world country could be happy and content. We’ve ALL seen it. Happy people are generally happy because they make themselves happy. They maintain a positive outlook on life and remain at peace with themselves.

One of the ways to create happiness in ourselves and others is to be of service. In that light I would like to start a weekly (I hope) blog post about observing people serving others.

Today I was at the grocery store within munchkin #3, and had a lot of things on my mind. While checking out, a sweet lady offered a balloon to my little one with a warm smile. During the checkout, I set a watermelon I purchased aside, then finished the transaction and was on my way – without the watermelon. Sweet, wonderful, Shellie at Harmon’s chased me down across the parking lot with the melon in tow. The same nice woman that offered the balloon to my baby.

Thanks Shellie!

What service have you seen lately?

RB

BJ Bedont

Posted in Perspective, Posts | Tagged | Leave a comment