Confidence In Small Steps

Little by little, a little becomes a lot

In most aspects of our lives we learn in small, incremental steps. Occasionally we might experience a eureka moment or a momentous life changing event but by and large, it’s step-by-step. The Tanzanian proverb ‘Little by little, a little become a lot’ has become a firm favourite of mine. It’s the approach I use in my coaching and it forms the basis of my book Unlock Your Confidence.

Inevitably even small changes have a knock on effect. By focusing on the small stuff we see immediate changes. This builds confidence and motivation.

Every day confidence is built in everyday life

Book Cover: Unlock Your Confidence by Dr Gary WoodSome confidence building courses centre around daredevil stunts such as walking on hot coals or bungee jumping. The problem is we rarely need those skills in everyday life. A more productive approach is to review your values, take stock of your strengths and set goals that are personally meaningful to you. This gives you a sense of what drives and motivates you, what tools you have to propel you forward and a clear picture of the final destination. You can apply this to every aspect of your life. Using this approach even the tiniest step becomes significant. Often people recognize that they got to where they are now by stages, it rarely happens overnight. Taking the courage to tackle the small challenges in life build the confidence to tackle with bigger issues. It’s important that we retain the sense that the biggest challenges in life are comprised of tiny pieces. Little by little, a little becomes a lot. it applies to the problem and it equally applies to the solution – the way forward.

Links:

Advertisements

Dealing with “Stuckness” – Tips For Making Decisions In Times of Overwhelm

Stuckness, choices and overwhelm

Inevitably at some time in our lives we will experience “stuckness” – the state when we feel overwhelmed by choice. It could be we have to choose between to equally bad choices (the proverbial ‘rock and a hard place’) or two equally positive choices. Alternatively we can be swamped by too many choices. It could also be that we need to take action to generate choices. So how do we break out of a state of “stuckness”? Here are some suggestions to help to create a shift.

Dealing With basic survival needs in decision making

We are better equipped to make decisions if we are fed, watered and rested. So making sure you eat healthily when the temptation is to hit the junk food.  Drink some water when you’re more inclined to reach for the coffee. Make sure you get a good night’s sleep. A little fresh air such as walk in the park can do wonders to clear the head. Exercises has also been shown to boost cognitive abilities. In short, look after yourself and your body and a clearer mind will follow. All of these are the basic building blocks for dealing with mental fatigue as well a basis for building confidence.

Dealing with unfamiliarity in decision making

Just asking two simple questions can help to create a shift in perspective when faced with choices. It does help if one of your core values is learning. Do you like to try new experiences? Will the choices ahead contribute to your personal or professional development? When experience demands on my time presented as ‘opportunities’ from other people I always asked these questions. Of course, I try to help whenever I can, but sometimes I just need to set my own priorities. This sets me up for the next tool.

Apply the ‘Absolutely Yes’ or ‘No’ Rule

If I’m trying to deal with competing demands on my time I ask the question ‘Do I want/need to do this, ‘absolutely yes’ or ‘no’? If I can’t say ‘absolutely yes’ then it’s automatically ‘no’. Sometimes I need to ask myself ‘am I just saying no because I’m scared or because it’s a challenge or a new experience?’. This helps me to make sure I’m just  saying ‘no’ out of fear. Often the difference between fear and excitement is about perception.This brings me to the next tool.

Which choices best match my core values?

Having a sense of my values helps with decision making. Two of my values are ‘learning’ and ‘making a difference’. Knowing your values can help to eliminate some choices and increase the attractiveness of others. Your values are a statement of ‘what you stand for’ in life. Linking goals and values means that we gain a lot of intrinsic motivation to complete them.

And finally if all else fails. . .

Toss a coin

If you are faced with two equally compelling (or repellent) choices then just toss a coin and try one out. Really commit to the decision and put effort into it to make it work for you.

So there you have a few coaching techniques and a few personal insights to clear a sense of ‘stuckness’.

Links:

Καλό μήνα! – Have a Good Month – Review and Renew Your Goals

Kalo Mina – Have a Good Month

Being an ardent Grecophile, I have adopted the Greek traditional wish of Καλό μήνα! (Kalo mina) which means ‘Good Month’. Good months don’t just happen of their own accord. It prompts me to consider what would need to happen over the coming month to rate it as a ‘good month’ and what can I do to plan for it and make it happen. It doesn’t necessarily have to be any massively significant event or achievement. Good months are made of more good days than bad days. Good days are made of more daily uplifts than daily hassles. A series of small positive outcomes can make your day.

Goal setting with the PAR approach

The (goal-setting) process for having a good month has three parts: P.A.R. that’s:

  • Plan – create an action plan for your goals for the month ahead.
  • Action – Do something each day to achieve your goals
  • Review – Towards the end of the month, review your action plan and consider what adjustments you need to make the following month a good one.

This approach fits with the coaching principle of ‘feedback not failure‘. The prevalent model of goal-setting – the New Year’s resolution – fails because we adopt an all-or-nothing approach. The first stumble is seen as a failure. It is not! It is feedback that our goals action plan needs an adjustment. The first day of the month offers an opportunity to review and renew your goals. It’s always a work in progress.

So consider what progress you will make towards your goals and how this helps to make up a better month, a good month.

 Καλό μήνα!

Links:

Self-Coaching: Exploring Exceptions to ‘The Rule of Absolute Hopelessness’

When we are stuck in the middle of a problem, it’s sometimes difficult to see a way forward. In  (life) coaching, it is often helpful to explore exceptions to the ‘rule of absolute hopelessness’. Stress throws us into survival mode and can negatively impact on our cognitive abilities. We don’t process information so well.

Questioning techniques (borrowed from Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy and Solution Focused Brief Therapy) help us to challenge our sense of overwhelm and to seek little glimmers of hope. Here are some suggestions for questions that you can ask yourself. They are also useful in working with others. If you are working with others, the questions need to be used sensitively. It’s important that other people feels as though they have been heard. If you are working on your own issues, you could get someone to ask you the questions, or else get a notebook and spend time writing down your answers.

  • Consider / Tell me about the times when you did not experience the problem so intensely.
  • Consider / Tell me about the times when you cope better despite the problem.
  • Consider / Tell me about the times when the problem doesn’t feel so great, when you feel more in control of things if only for a short time.
  • Consider / Tell me about the times when you refuse to let it get you down and control your life.
  • When was the last time you did something enjoyable and refused to let the problem get in the way of having a good time, even if only for a while.

When working with coaching clients, I invite them to take part in an observation exercise. I simply ask them to notice the times, between sessions when the problem/issue is not so intense or when it doesn’t bother them so much. The aim is not to take action or change things but purely to take note.

Ask about life coaching with Dr Gary WoodOften these observations form the basis of ways forward. Inevitably throughout our lives we will experience a sense of ‘stuckness’. Often it’s a sign that we are in new territory and learning something new. Exploring the exceptions can help to draw out the seedlings of transferable skills including coping skills. If there’s a sense of having been there before, exploring the exceptions can help instigate new learning and new ways of coping.

Links:

If I Don’t Try Then I Can’t Fail – Putting Your Goals on Hold?

Better the Devil You Know?

‘If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ is a common theme in counselling, therapy and coaching. People may be stuck in a rut but it’s a familiar and comfortable. It’s the same as the old adage ‘Better the devil you know’. It’s basically a fear of the unknown and has its origin in the messages we picked up in childhood from teachers, parents and other authority figures. ‘If I don’t try then I won’t fail’ is part of our self-defeating inner dialogue.

Re-running Negative Scripts

One of the things parents worry about is protecting their children from failure, disappointment and hurt. They often try to discourage their offspring from taking on new challenges. However consider the basic process of learning to walk. That’s all about failure, disappointment and falling over a lot. Playing a computer game is all about failure and disappointment. Think of early computer games systems that took ages to load and crashed frequently. It didn’t seem to dent their popularity. It’s amazing what people will put up with when they focus on the outcome (the pay off). Failure and disappointment are key parts of the learning process. It’s clear that we tackle many challenges without engaging the ‘If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ script. It’s clear that in some instances we think of disappointment and failure in different ways. Disappointment is a recognition that a goal means something to you. It taps into your values in some way. Failure is more often just feedback in the learning process.  However if you keep running that protective-parent script then you trade-off your goals and ambitions for the ‘comfort of misery’.

Putting ”If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ to the Test

This is where I get blunt. I want you to apply the ‘If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ test to a few mundane tasks:

  • Getting out of bed: If you don’t try to get out of bed in the morning you can’t fail to get out of bed. True or false? If you’re still in bed, then you failed. If you just get out of bed and get straight back in, then you have succeeded.
  • Getting a glass of water: If you don’t try to get a glass of water then you can’t fail to be thirsty! Keep up with this strategy and you won’t have to stop trying. Nature will take care of that for you.
  • Going to the toilet: If you don’t try to go to the toilet then you will probably crap yourself! That’s not many people’s definition of success or even protecting oneself from disappointment.

It’s clear that the ‘If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ is only valid in circumstances where there is more at stake than getting out of bed, dying of thirst or rolling around in your own faeces, namely your goals and ambitions.

What’s Really Important to You?

The ‘If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ approach offers you an opportunity to test how important something is to you. It’s an opportunity check out your values. If moving away from disappointment and a fear failure are strong motivators, then what do you want instead? Understanding how your values inform your decision-making has a major impact on goal achievement. Many people risk the loss of a small amount of money every week against the chance of winning a jackpot lottery. On a rollover week people often double their stake against potential increased rewards. What if the same approach was applied to goals? Somewhere along the way, our goals and ambitions have become bigger than a jackpot lottery. So consider what are your core values in life and what goal would you link to these values. What would you need to do to not look back on a life of regret?

Emotion-Focused Coping

At the heart of the ‘If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ approach is emotion-focused coping. Instead of tackling the cause of problems people often address the ‘symptoms’, namely the unpleasant emotions. Emotion-focused coping is a short-term approach. A slice of cake, chocolate or alcohol may dull the discomfort of painful emotions right now. However, this approach won’t be any help in getting to the root of the problem. The ‘If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ approach is about anticipating negative emotions so that you won’t have to resort to cake. That’s as far as it goes. What is more beneficial is working out a series of small, calculated risks and taking action.

Small Steps to Confidence

In one of my confidence building workshops we offered funded places which means that people just had to sign up. They could attend a one-day workshop and lunch. On the face of it, there was such as thing as a free lunch. However, the people who signed up really had to put themselves out there. For some of them it may have seemed like a daunting prospect – a big risk. Many of my achievements came with a lot of pacing up and down and agonizing over decisions. However, on the day of the workshop, the sun was shining brightly and a some people didn’t turn up to the workshop. Instead, some of them went off to a theme park for the day and posted pictures on Facebook! Now these people knew that there was a waiting list to get on the workshop and so deprived others of the opportunity. The people who did make the effort to turn up were really annoyed by this and couldn’t let it go. It was a theme that would recur throughout the day. Eventually, I turned it around by asking ‘What’s the last thing you set out to do and achieved?’ People offered examples from the past when they ‘had more confidence’. I asked ‘What about this week?’ No one offered anything. I asked ‘What about today?’ Again blank looks. So I asked ‘What about getting to this work shop because clearly, as you have pointed out, quite a few people didn’t make it’. The whole room erupted with laughter. We then worked through the process by how they all go here including the decision-making and the practical planning.

Stripping the ‘If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ approach right back to basics helps us to take stock of our skills and strengths. Tackling any goal however daunting is often about taking small, significant steps in the right direction using the very skills that get you out of bed in the morning. It’s not earth-shattering profound, but it does work. Confidence is built in small, meaningful steps!

Formula for Change

Begin by challenging negative self-talk, particularly the ‘If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ script. Challenge it by seeing ‘failure’ as feedback and set low risk goals and assess the results. Assess what skills and strengths you have in everyday life (however seemingly mundane) and how they can be used in achieving your goals. Instead of focusing on the emotions spend more time picturing the end result, your future desired outcome. Focus on what values you meet by your everyday actions.

In reality there is never an ideal time to take action on a personal challenge. All we can do is start here and now with what we have, move forward and build on each step. If you stick to the ‘If I don’t try then I can’t fail’ approach then the thing you most succeed at is regret. If that is one of your core values then that’s fine. If not then change the script.

Thanks to Sharon Hinsull for suggesting the theme for this blog post.

More posts by Gary Wood on the themes on failure, self-talk, regret, values and goals:

‘Are You Fit and Ready for Goal-Setting’ Quiz?

Fit and Ready for Action

At the most basic level, an attitude is a feeling or evaluation towards something, that is, our likes and dislikes. So, we can have an attitude towards just about everything, from foods, to people, to situations and courses of action. If we look at the Latin origin of the word ‘attitude’ it means ‘fit and ready for action’. So, attitudes create ‘a mental state of readiness’. Just like athletes on the starting line they provide the’ get ready and steady’ before the ‘go’. However, although they prime us ready for action, it doesn’t mean that we will always ‘go’. Attitudes don’t necessarily lead to behaviour; they just set up the mindset to make it more likely. So, for instance, you may have the attitude that going to the gym and eating healthily are good for you but that doesn’t automatically mean that you’ll follow up on this and do either of them.

Coaching as Attitude Change

As a social psychologist I have incorporated my specialism of attitudes into my coaching practice. Essentially the coaching process is a process of attitude change. Part of the process involves exploring attitudes to the self, the way the world works and our place in it and the benefits of setting goals. For many of us our first experience of goal-setting is the ill-fated new year’s resolution that tend to fizzle out after a few weeks. So perhaps it is not surprising that goal-setting, for some people, has a bad name. However, this attitude may prove a barrier to personal and professional development. We know that one of the conditions to maximize learning is to start with a positive mental attitude. It’s more difficult to retain knowledge if you resent having to learn it!

Attitudes have three components (ABC): affect (feelings), behaviour (actions) and cognitions (thoughts) and . Coaching deals with thoughts and feelings about ourselves, the world and how we act and interact in the world. It’s often expressed as ‘the viewing influences the doing, and vice versa’. Coaching can help to change feelings and thoughts and create a mental state of readiness for action. Goal-setting provides that extra nudge to take action. It’s often said that ‘if there ain’t goals then it ain’t coaching’.

In order to explore your attitudes to goal-setting, here is a brief quiz.

Are You Ready for Goal-Directed Action Quiz?

For each of these statements just answer (circle) true or false. For the purposes of this test there is no maybe.

  1. True or False? I’ve done alright so far, so why bother with goal-setting now?
  2. True or False? If I achieve my goals, people will expect even more of me.
  3. True or False? I get weighed down by the idea of a constant, lifelong pursuit of goals, and yet more goals.
  4. True or False? If I don’t try then I won’t fail.
  5. True or False? I don’t need to set goals.
  6. True or False? Things tend to work out as fate intended whether or not I set goals.
  7. True or False? I don’t want to feel constrained by goal chasing.
  8. True or False? Goals are just another way of getting us to ‘tow society’s line’.
  9. True or False? All the energy I spend setting goals may as well be used to get the job done.
  10. True or False? I’m just not a goal-setting kind of person.

What do your goal-setting quiz results mean?

If you answered ‘false’ to most of the questions it suggests that you are ready to take the plunge and set goals. Otherwise, you may already been routinely setting and achieving goals. If you answered mostly ‘true’ it indicates that you are not mentally ready to set goals. Perhaps you are more inclined to let the hand of fate sort it out. That isn’t resolution; that’s resignation.

Goals as Future-Desired Outcomes

There is debate as to whether we have all become somewhat ‘goal-obsessed’. This is more of a problem if you are just setting goals for goals’ sake. If the ‘future desired outcomes’ for your goals are personally meaningful to you, then goal-setting can help to streamline the personal development process. It take a lot of the ‘hit and miss’ out of the process.  So, review the questions in the quiz and consider the ‘true’ questions. What evidence can you find to challenge these statements? Have you attitudes to goal-setting changed (enough for you to give it a go)?

Goal-Setting Approaches

In my early coaching training, I learned to use goal-setting models (in the form of acronyms) and have developed some myself – GO-FLOW). However some people prefer not use such a prescriptive system. In my coaching practice I use Solution-Focused Brief Coaching which involves a series of focused conversations. Instead of acronyms, I ask questions to tap into your imagination, take stock of your strength, skills and achievements and ask you to consider small meaningful steps forward. Although I structure the process, each time its very different depending on the client who decides what the steps should be.

We all have goals. We all value and pursue different things. Goal-setting methods and systems can help us to signpost the way forward and encourage and motivation us to take action. After all, if there ain’t action then they ain’t goals.

Links:

Testing versus ‘On the Job’ – Theory versus Practice?

The University of Life

Recently I overheard someone on the phone loudly proclaiming that ‘on the job’ training is better than ‘all this testing nonsense’ because it allows people to go at their own pace. Of course makes intuitive sense to many people, especially those who gained a ‘BScliche’ at The University of Life.

For me, the theory informs the practice (and vice versa). I graduated from a University in an applied psychology department as a mature student (with plenty of prior life experience).Whenever we decide to come down on the side of testing or on the job training we lose half of the experience and advance a half-psychology.

Performance Improvement by Testing

Testing gets a bad reputation from in some quarters because it is seen as stressful and lacking ecological validity, that is, real-word relevance. One of the most common tests taking, even for those not academically inclined, is the mundane driving test. The stress mainly comes from not knowing what to expect. That’s why we have mock tests under near-test conditions. However the driving test is heavily reliant on practical abilities. The test sets objective standards that a learner needs to meet.

Critics of testing most often comment of the meaningfulness of the test and the unnecessary stress placed on the learning. Of course with school testing there is a political and financial dynamic which the learner shouldn’t be burdened with. The great benefit of testing, when done properly, is that it sets out, transparently, an objective standard. It also helps us to set goals that stretch us. Inevitably this involves a degree of stress. However, a little stress is good for improving performance. We often talk about a performance-enhancing adrenaline rush. The secret is to keep the stress within optimal limits.

So often it is not testing that it is the issue but how it is communicated and implemented and how it is related to the real-world. The key feature of testing is that it offers feedback. Research has shown that feedback improves performance irrespective of age. A little well-applied testing can give us that extra push.

On the Job Training

We learn most things by on-the-job training. Learning to talk, walk, swim and just about any other skill are from on-the-job training. We learn to how to interact with each other in the same way. A night on the town can be on-the-job training. However culturally there are many standards of conduct to which we adhere. We often use the phrase that ‘some people test us’. So ‘on-the-job’ training is rarely devoid of testing.

The main pitfalls of ‘on-the-job’ training are that it depends on the mentor, the feedback and the motivation. How well does the mentor give the appropriate feedback? is there a personality match between learner and mentor? Do their learning styles match? Perhaps most importantly, does learning ‘on the job’ mean that the learner just does what is necessary rather than pushing the limits?

Theory, Practice and Performance

I used the phrase ‘theory versus practice’ but testing and examination can be something that develops practice. Repetition and review are important factors when learning, however recall is improved by deeper levels of processing that testing offers. Conversely, ‘doing’ aids understanding. So, looking at learning from a holistic viewpoint, just as with the humble  driving test, we need a combination of both ‘on the job’ training as well as testing. Both are essential. The key is that each should inform the other in a way that is meaningful to the learner.

Links:

Being Happy: Memories and Goals

In a recent radio interview I was asked about the process by which we recall happy moments in our lives whilst less happy times tend to fade. Of course, it’s not the same for all everyone. Some people are adept at recalling past events as reasons for not engaging with the present or the future. I’m not referring here to recalling serious trauma but more the refusal to move on in the coaching context.

Working with mature students there have been numerous examples of people who have held on to the callous remarks of (poor) teachers. It took some of them 30 years to go back into the classroom. It wasn’t that they had suddenly found the confidence to do so, it’s just that the ‘pain’ and regret of not doing so became greater. As well as teach the syllabus it was also my job to convince them that it was the right decision. These students are the main reason I got into (life) coaching.

Social Media and Memories

A recent research study at Portsmouth University by Alice Good and Claire Wilson suggests that we use social media like Facebook, not just to interact with others but also to interact with our former selves. Some people spend a great deal of time looking through the old photographs the post on networking sights. The process of looking back can create have an emotional buffering effect especially during tough times. It can create a sense of well-being and optimism to help us to deal with present challenges and to face the future.

Constructed Memories

The human memory is not an infallible storage device. Cognitive psychologist  Frederic Bartlett demonstrated in the 1930s that memories are highly constructed. When things don’t make sense or when there is missing information, we fill in the gaps based on memory default values based on our experiences of likelihood, Often our memories bear little relation to what actually happened, which is why the accuracy and reliability of eye-witness testimony (in the justice system) has been challenged by psychology, most notably by cognitive psychologist Elizabeth Loftus. In cognitive-behavioural therapy questioning techniques centre on cognitive distortions, most often on black-and-while, absolutist thinking. Similarly by exploring exceptions to negative evaluations, in the solution-focused approach, we can reveal small nuggets of possibility to build upon. In classic psychoanalysis we have he concept of defence mechanisms, where sometimes memories of painful experiences are blocked at an unconscious level in order to protect us emotionally and psychologically. Often memories seem to have a life of their own.

Being Happy

Happiness is no longer just in the realm of pop psychology, it has become a legitimate topic in academic psychology led by pioneering Positive psychologist Martin Seligman and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. For Seligman, happiness is about living our lives according to our values and strengths. For Csikszentmihalyi happiness is about setting goals that stretch us and put us into a state of flow. ‘Flow’ is that state of total engagement in what we are doing, when we are totally ‘in the present moment’ and lose a sense of time and of ourselves. We can actively do something about our own happiness. Along with confidence-building it is one of the main motivations for seeking (life) coaching.

The Past-Present-Future Balance

As with all aspects of life, balance is key. It’s good to reminisce and look back and be reminded of the good times. The best times in our lives are often when we most in tune with our strengths and values. For some people the past has a powerful lure, so much so that it taints the present and the future. Philosopher Walter Benjamin said that ‘History is an angel blown backward through time’.  It means that, essentially, we walk backwards into the future. We cannot help but look back but still need to move forward. It’s important to value the past for its lessons, for uncovering our strengths and for providing us happy memories to see us through challenging times. Perhaps it’s greatest value is to help propel us into the future. There lie new opportunities to live according to our values, to use our skills and strengths and more opportunities to experience a sense of flow, those moments where time appears to stand still. Over the past few years there has been an explosion of interest in mindfulness – the ability to live in the present moment for what it is without letting it get crowded out by the past or the future. It’s all a delicate balance that becomes a whole lot easier when we take a few moments out of our day to settle our minds and take a few, long, slow deep breaths. Taking control of our stress/relaxation is the first step to confidence and happiness.

(In conversation with Annie Othen, BBC Coventry and Warwickshire, 21/3/13 )

Links:

Reset Your Goals – First Day of Spring

The euphoria of the New Year has long evaporated by now. Stumbling with our goals is often interpreted as failure and a reason to give up. However, going off track is more likely feedback that the goal’s action plan needs to be adjusted. As we seem to put a significance of key dates as starting points for our goals, there’s a good argument to revise, refine and reset out goals on the first day of Spring. It’s the perfect day for new beginnings.

Working as a coach I work with clients to set goals all year round. That’s not to say we can’t borrow a little momentum from a significant date. The most common reasons for stumbling on goals are that the goals are unrealistic. Usually people take on too much given their circumstances. Goals may have been vaguely described which means it’s difficult to keep a track of when you are on track or not. The other main reason is one of motivation. The significance of a particular day is simply not enough to carry us through when times get tough. So spend some of this first day of Spring reading the following posts, renewing your goals and getting back on track.

More on goals:

Feedback Improves Performance Irrespective of Age

Recent research into learning supports an established principle that  task-related feedback can significantly improve performance. More importantly it goes some way to challenge the negative stereotype that age-related decline is inevitable. Feedback can improve performance irrespective of age.

Published in Psychology and Aging , investigators at Rice University (Houston, Texas) found that taking tests (and getting feedback) is more beneficial for learning than just studying information or simply re-reading it. The benefits were observed regardless of age, level of intelligence or whether or not people attend college. Jessica Logan, Assistant Professor of Psychology at Rice, said the findings show that training can help older workers obtain and maintain job-related information, adding the study also revealed” that employees regardless of age can greatly benefit from testing activities as a way to sharpen their on-the-job skills”.

The research emphasizes that learning is an active process rather than a passive absorption of knowledge. In my work providing academic coaching, I suggest techniques that increase interest and engagement with learning materials rather than passively reading through notes.

The research also has important implications for older people no longer in work too. Getting involved in new learning and getting feedback can have important implications for cognitive functioning. Learning is a lifelong process. Learning new skills increase confidence and esteem at any age.

Links: