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SELF-CONFIDENCE: A Case Study on Building Confidence

Are You as Confident as You Can Be?

As the core foundation for human development, full trust in self and others — confidence — is the most important element of the healthy self. Oakleigh Thorne II, environmental educator, tells us, "The key to finding and pursuing a worthwhile purpose is developing self-esteem. Nature is a builder of self-esteem."

Confident people generate high self-esteem. People with high self-esteem know their own worth. They have a favorable impression, respect, appreciation, and belief in themselves. Thus, Passionate Pursuers pack high self-esteem, with confidence, for their journey. Follow Goethe's advice, "Just trust yourself, then you will know how to live."

How to Strengthen Your Self-Confidence and Esteem

People in my Pursuit of Passionate Purpose study report that early responsibility during the growing-up years, supportive inputs from external sources, banishment of self-doubt, and use of positive feedback loops all serve to strengthen self-esteem and self-confidence.

It is encouraging to know that people can take steps to create more confidence. Pursuit of a passionate purpose in itself stimulates assurance. No one says it better than Mark Plaatjes, 1993 world marathon champion, "Believe in yourself. The one who wins is the one who wants it the most — the one with the most self-confidence."

A Case Study on Building Confidence

I love being a Girl Scout. Why? Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place. It's 2.8 million strong in the USA — 2 million girls and 800,000 adults who believe girls can change the world. Through membership in the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), Girl Scouts are part of a worldwide family of more than 10 million girls and adults in 144 countries. The Girl Scouts Movement is the largest girl-serving organization in the country and has the largest girl-led business in the country — the annual Cookie Program.

I was a Girl Scout growing up and now I'm a lifetime member and co-advisor for high-school scouts. I can still see the transformation in my own daughter's self-confidence through Girl Scouting. As a first-grade Brownie, she was shy and quiet. When she attempted to sell her first box of Girl Scout cookies, she doubted herself.

Over the years, however, she learned how to run her own cookie business, setting increasingly bigger goals to fund her Girl Scout travels. She spoke confidently with her many customers, managed delivery, and did follow-up with thank-you notes. In the process she established a positive feedback loop, learned what worked and what didn't, and sold thousands of boxes of cookies. By taking early responsibility for cookie sales and many girl-led Girl Scout projects, Annie built her self-confidence and esteem.


Passionate pursuers have high self-confidence and esteem. They build full trust in self and others by taking early responsibility during the growing-up years, getting supportive inputs from external sources, banishing self-doubt, and using positive feedback loops. What are you doing to build self-confidence and esteem in yourself, your kids, and your staff? Start now.


Theresa Szczurek (,,

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