I stumbled across this book, The Confidence Gap by Russ Harris, and as soon as I started reading it I was very eager to write up this review for it. I had bought the book for one reason, but came to find out how it was able to help me in so many more ways!
My Story of Confidence
When I was younger I really struggled with my confidence. As a matter of fact, I barely had any until I was almost an adult. I had a lot of anxiety as a child and was super shy and self conscious because of it. That is what led me to my poor levels of faith in myself.
This was most evident in my career as a youth league baseball player. I was very smart for my age and picked up on how to play the game very well at practice, but struggled mightily to translate it to game time. This show cased itself most with my hitting ability. I would crush the ball in practice and be afraid to swing the bat in a game.
My entire social life was also handicapped by my lack of confidence until I was about half way through the age of 16. It wasn’t until the Chicken Polka Dance incident that I started to find faith in myself (you can read that story in this article: It is Okay, You are Not Broken).
I continued to improve myself over the next decade and peaked in my first real career job back in 2000, 5 years after graduating. I had the right mix of confidence and humbleness and was able to take the to launch my professional career.
As time wore on I came down from the peak that I had reached, but never fell into the depths that I traversed as a youth. I still struggle with it all at times, so when I saw this book I thought it might be a good way of putting things to rest for me.
When I Started Reading… I Got Really Excited!
Several things jumped out at me right from the beginning with this book. The first was when the author stated that he may not be 100% right all of the time and to effectively take the content in the book and what feels right for you and leave the rest go. I always appreciate a little humility when it comes to self-help type materials.
The next thing really struck me was the overall writing style. It really felt that we were having a conversation, much more than it was me reading a book. Russ was very good at knowing what kinds of thoughts we would be thinking as we read the book and that really helped me to connect with the content.
As I continued to read my excitement for the book only grew. Whether or not he knew it or not, this book is so much more than learning how to have confidence. Everything I was reading tied in great with many of the concepts that I have been sharing through this site. For example, there are a lot of mindfulness techniques shared.
Several of my close family members also struggle with anxiety issues and I am looking forward to letting them all borrow the book as I think it would be of tremendous value to them. In particular, there were a few times that I was almost brought to tears as what I was reading was the answers that they are looking for. My only problem is who to give the book to first!
Overview of The Confidence Gap
The book is broken down into several sections to help add a distinction between the various processes that are reviewed through the book as a whole. This certainly helped keep your attention focus on the right perspectives at the right time.
The book also has quite a few little exercises as you go which gives it more of an interactive feel. They also provide free worksheets if you would like to use at their website thehappinesstrap.com. I myself did not use them as plain paper worked just fine for me, but it was a nice option to have.
The big key to the entirety of this book is that we cannot stop all of the random thoughts that pop into our heads. However, we can choose how those thoughts affect us and our behaviors. There are many exercises to help us learn how to unhook ourselves from the negative thoughts that we would rather not be focused on.
There are many stories shared throughout as well to help shine a clearer perspective on the various topics that are discussed. I found the stories to be very helpful for me to understand just what the author was trying to get across.
3 Reasons Why You Should Buy This Book
I could probably go on and on about why you should buy this book to have in your own personal library, but I will do my best to keep it short and to the point here. Personally I am half ready to buy a second or third copy just so I have extras to loan out to my family and friends!
First, the main reason I would recommend this book would be to those that are already aware that they have confidence issues. Obviously the book caters to that specific problem and does so in a way that I have not seen before. However, this new method makes a ton of sense and it won’t take long for you to understand that.
Secondly, anyone that is looking to learn how to become more mindful in their life, I would also recommend to read this. The process of finding confidence in your life is very closely associated with the act of mindfulness. There are several exercises in the book that can help you down this path as well.
Thirdly, the book is in no way religious or spiritual in any direct way. This means that anyone of any faith can benefit from it without feeling like they have to change their beliefs. Some people that are close to me sometimes guard themselves against my spiritual beliefs, but this book transcends that gap.
If you haven’t figured it out already, I obviously love this book and I am very thankful that it came into my life. Before I even finished reading it, I was already reaping many benefits from it. I still remember the first time I actively used one technique when I needed to unhook myself from a negative thought. I was amazed at that moment of how quickly I processed everything and moved on.
Another great side effect is that I have seen an increase in my overall happiness since I read this. One of the exercises that I frequently use has also brought a lot of laughs for me as well. In this method you take the thoughts and hear them through a character’s voice. For me I use the characters from Seinfeld and that has helped me to laugh at the negative thoughts and be able to let them go much easier.
Share Your Thoughts or Questions
Before I go I would like to ask you to share your thoughts or questions with us here in the comment section. Have you read the book yourself? What did you think of the content within? How was it able to help you?
Do you still have questions about the book before you buy it? If so I will be more than happy to weight in and share my thoughts and perspectives with you, please just let me know.
Lastly, I would like to thank you for stopping by my little corner of the Internet. I would also like to recommend some other articles that I have written that tie in well with the content of The Confidence Gap by Russ Harris.
- How to be Successful in Life
- How to Be Happy in Life – The Power of Living with Intent
- Why You Should be Grateful in Life
- It is Okay, You are Not Broken
- Mindfulness – Why it is Important
James W D