Be confident, not overconfident

Maulana Wahiduddin Khan I The Sunday Guardian I April 26, 2015

Self-confidence is an important attribute. You need to trust yourself. You need to have the necessary determination to do the task you have set for yourself. You need to have the confidence to plan your course of action, without hesitation and keeping in mind the available opportunities. You need to be able to discover what opportunities exist and act accordingly. All these are related to self-confidence. You need self-confidence to be successful in any and every sphere of life.

Self-confidence is a sign that you are still alive, and lack of it is a sign of death. But self-confidence has a minus-point, which can sometimes completely destroy someone. This negative-point is what is called over-confidence.

If a little stream runs past your house and you leap across it to the other side, it shows that you have self-confidence. But if instead of a stream, it is a wide river and you want to jump across it and reach the other shore, you won't be successful, of course. You will fall into the river and be drowned.

In this world, all of us exist between two dimensions — ourselves, on the one hand, and external conditions, on the other. In other words, for any effort to succeed, your role is 50%. The remaining 50% depends on the external conditions.

In this regard, then, what you need to do is that before you take any practical step you should consider both aspects. One must not only follow one's aspirations and desires, rather one must also take into account factors governing the external world. If you only look at what you want or like and ignore the external conditions, your plan is bound to fail. And then you will start complaining about others, even though you yourself, and not somebody else, are the cause of your failure.