Raising the Bar

“Wow, you’re so confident.”

I hear this all the time. The way it is said speaks volumes about the person saying it.

Some people say it with a big smile, and a tone of kinship. I know that they are operating from a place of security, positivity, feeling good about themselves.

Sometimes I hear it said with a trace of longing. “If only I could feel that way…”

VERY often, I sense a profound eye-roll beneath the surface. “Ugh, who do you think you are? Your ability to feel good about yourself is highlighting my lack of ability to do the same.”

You don’t have to be the most stunning, brilliant, together person in the room to radiate confidence. It’s something separate from all that. I have no qualms about letting my confidence shine through, because it’s not just about me-I consider it a gift to my clients. Whether I am seeing them for acupuncture, hypnotherapy, or hypnoacupuncture, it doesn’t matter-every patient is on a path to becoming a better version of who they were the day before. And I KNOW that this is going to happen for them. Because my confidence in my own worth doesn’t stop at the way I feel about myself…I feel it in reference to EVERYONE. I see the potential that not everyone can see-hell, MOST people can’t see it. I KNOW that you have the ability to get better, even if this is so far outside of your truth right now, it’s completely ridiculous. I have absolute faith that you will rise up, understand your value, and let go of what is no longer serving you.

I see you at your highest, and let you rise to meet my standards of what I know you are capable of.

Years ago, when I was a high school teacher, I was guided by curriculum, and would often get fired up about the low expectations around it. The system believed that the kids were capable of only so much, never more than that. And what we ended up with were kids who would never reach those low expectations, because why bother? If the bar was set that low, why strive for it at all?

On the rare days that I was allowed to have a bit more freedom with the coursework, I would consistently be amazed at how much smarter these kids were than anyone was allowed to see. I’d raise that bar so high, and give them concepts to think about that were confusing even for college students. You could see them light right up, even when they were lost, not because the material was so inspiring…but because someone actually believed that they had potential to understand this. They would rise to the level of my expectations of their potential, and they would feed off my confidence in their abilities, hungry for it.

Perhaps my unshakable faith in those who sit before me is sometimes unwarranted, but I don’t care. I’d rather be occasionally disappointed than know I’m failing to enlighten patients to their full potential to thrive. Sometimes when you can’t believe in yourself, you need someone to hold that belief for you until you become more sure of your path.