How To Be Confident: Embracing Your Inner Nitwit

In today’s fast-paced world, everyone is in search of that elusive elixir: confidence. We’re told it’s the key to success, the magnet for attraction, and the stepping stone to achieving our wildest dreams. But, what if I told you that the secret to “How To Be Confident” lies in an unexpected place? It’s nestled within our biggest fears, our goofiest moments, and our most embarrassing memories. It’s about embracing our inner nitwit.

The Paradox of Confidence

Most self-help articles or motivational speakers might direct you towards your strengths when discussing how to gain confidence. They’ll ask you to list out your accomplishments, to focus on your positive attributes, and to constantly remind yourself of them. And while these methods have their merits, there’s an untouched area of confidence-building that’s just as effective, if not more so.

Understanding the Fear

The road to understanding confidence begins with recognizing one universal truth: every single one of us is afraid of looking foolish. Whether it’s hesitating to ask a question, shying away from expressing our feelings, or avoiding a challenge for fear of failure – the root cause remains the same. We’re terrified of appearing clueless, of being laughed at, of undermining our dignity.

But here’s the twist: this very fear can be the key to unlocking unparalleled confidence.

The Historical Perspective

History, literature, and art are filled with figures and narratives that encourage embracing our follies.

Erasmus’s Liberating Message

The Dutch scholar and philosopher, Erasmus, in his enlightening work, ‘In Praise of Folly’, offers a fresh take on human nature. He posits that every individual, no matter how wise or accomplished, has their foolish tendencies. It’s a part of being human. Erasmus himself, despite his scholarly accomplishments, admitted to his own ridiculous tendencies. His message? If someone as learned as him can admit to being a nitwit at times, so can we all.

Brueghel’s Comic Interpretation

Similarly, Pieter Brueghel’s ‘The Dutch Proverbs’ visually captures the essence of human absurdity. His painting is a testament to our shared foolishness, and instead of presenting it as a flaw, Brueghel seems to suggest that it’s an inherent, almost endearing, part of our nature.

Embracing the Nitwit Within: Steps to Boost Confidence

  1. Acknowledge Your Fears: Before you can confront your fears, you need to recognize and accept them.
  2. Educate Yourself: Delve into works that explore human nature. Understanding that everyone has moments of folly can be truly liberating.
  3. Daily Affirmations: Every morning, remind yourself of your inherent human nature. We’re all silly, we’re all nitwits, and that’s perfectly okay.
  4. Practice Vulnerability: Put yourself in situations where you could appear foolish. Whether it’s asking a stranger for directions or trying something new, expose yourself to the possibility of looking silly.
  5. Celebrate Your Follies: Instead of ruminating over mistakes, celebrate them. They’re a testament to your humanity.


  • Why should I embrace looking foolish to understand “How To Be Confident”?
    • Embracing our follies liberates us from the fear of judgment, allowing genuine confidence to shine through.
  • Does this mean I shouldn’t focus on my strengths?
    • Not at all! Recognizing your strengths is essential. However, equally important is accepting and celebrating your flaws.
  • Is this method of gaining confidence universally applicable?
    • Absolutely. Every individual, regardless of background, has moments of folly. This method focuses on a universal human trait.
  • How do I start this journey of embracing my inner nitwit?
    • Begin with introspection. Understand your fears, and then expose yourself to them. It’s about growing through experience.
  • Won’t this approach make me appear weak?
    • On the contrary, accepting and showcasing vulnerability is often seen as a strength. It signifies self-awareness and authenticity.


The quest to understand “How To Be Confident” doesn’t have a one-size-fits-all answer. While recognizing our strengths is pivotal, so is understanding and embracing our inherent silliness. As we navigate the intricate dance of life, with its highs and lows, successes and failures, moments of wisdom, and bouts of foolishness, let’s remember that true confidence stems from accepting and celebrating our whole selves – nitwits and all.

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