Effects Of Lack Of Confidence (And What To Do About It)

Before I start, the most important thing to acknowledge is that lack of self-confidence is never our mistake. We live in a society where you could see an epidemic of low confidence. It affects our careers and every aspect of our lives - be it emotionally or mentally.

Low self-confidence comes from a negative mindset or state of mind that gets nourished every day by inadequacy and worthlessness. If you want to learn how to boost your confidence, I have a post on it.

Lack of confidence might be due to many factors, sometimes due to home or family experiences as family members could not help but mark our actions by harsh criticism. Moreover, it could also manifest itself into something more vulnerable such as depression, anxiety or stress. 

When negative thoughts and mindset are prevalent- either generated by our relatives or by overthinking, it can adversely affect our lives and the way we think or feel about ourselves. Moreover, it also affects our actions and life experiences in the long run.

Effects of lack of confidence

Lack of confidence can reduce or diminish the quality of a person’s life in many ways. If unchecked, it can only turn traumatic for some people. 

Lack of low self-esteem does not only affect one’s private or personal life, but it also has a significant impact on a person’s career and professional life. 

For example: 

If one feels insecure at work and is always intimidated by your co-workers at work or feel as if you are inadequate or not proficient for the post, your self-esteem is low and you need to work on that.

Even if you are scared to be judged by your colleagues and employees and are unable to handle criticism at work, your self-confidence might be denting.

What Causes Lack of Confidence?

There are many varied reasons for this question but according to Dr. Lars Madsen, lack of confidence is traced back to dysfunctional or abuse in your early years. The effects of your childhood trauma can persist well now when you are in adulthood.

Furthermore, on-going stressful events at work, school or at home, financial troubles, relationship problems, family disputes, sexual abuse and being bullies are some of the factors that lower the confidence in a person. 

Our lives are full of triumphs and challenges- ups and downs. In today’s era, we focus too much on our achievements and fail to understand the stressors or in general, the reasons that cause us to doubt or question ourselves. As doubt haunts our mind, the sentences, ‘I can do it’, or ‘I will do it’ become hard mantras to dismiss. 

Here are some reasons that might contribute to the lack of confidence in people:

Genes and Temperament 

Some factors that molds and builds our confidence is in our brain from birth. Numerous studies have shown that genetic makeup affects the amount of confidence-building chemical that our brains can access. 25% of the genetic traits are linked to confidence.

Our behavior can also affect our confidence. If you are hesitant and watchful in unfamiliar situations, you might be having behavioral inhibition. However, it is not bad. We need people who do not jump to conclusions quickly.

Life Experiences

Several traumatic events could lead us to consider ourselves as worthless and inadequate for society. 

A person might have encountered events that proved to be traumatic for him. For example, emotional, sexual and physical abuse could affect our self-worth and what we think about ourselves.

Parenting style could also affect your personality. For example, if one of your parents always belittled you or abused you in childhood, you could have a difficult time realizing your self-worth.


Lack of confidence might also come from not knowing anything about the self-esteem game. For example, if a person thinks he needs to be confident to show up confidently before a large crowd, he has already set himself up for failure.

The World Around Us

 The world around us is bad and constantly makes us feel bad about our body, complexion, and way of living just for promoting stuff. In many cases, they might even point out the flaws that you did not notice before. This could severely damage the self-confidence and the faith that we have in ourselves.

If you want to know more about what causes low self-esteem, I found this article on it.

How To Deal With Anxiety

Effects of Lack of Confidence

Understanding the lack of confidence begins with understanding the causes and the term, ’confidence’ itself. Now that you have followed up good, let’s move to the effect of lack of confidence. 

Negative Feelings

Confidence and self-esteem are closely related to our behavior and moods. So, when the confidence in you is diminished, you might experience a slew of negative thoughts such as shame, loneliness, anxiety, fear, anger, rage and even depression.

Every other human being experiences episodes of negative emotions but having a lack of confidence could give a hard time to the person trying to shake these feelings off. A person with a lack of confidence would always experience negative thoughts in combination. 


Lack of confidence can affect the self-love. In some cases, it could make you hate yourself. Many people have difficulty in forgiving themselves for making mistakes. Hating yourself would give you the license to behave abnormally at work or with your partner.

Make-Believe That You Have Nothing to Offer

Due to a lack of confidence, you might perceive others’ opinions and gifts superior to your own. If you are suffering from lack of confidence, you might believe that no one is there for you, no one cares what you feel and you do not offer anything to anyone. This increases the anger people carry with themselves.

Obsession with Perfection

Lack of confidence would have you obsessed with perfectionism. People with low self-confidence have difficulty in making human mistakes. This is also a tell-tale symbol of toxic shame.

Lowered Resilience

The effects of a lack of confidence are tied with a sense of uselessness or futility. Therefore, people find it hard to recover from setbacks that should have been temporary.

Lack of Self-Care

Lack of confidence directly affects your self-worth. People with a lack of confidence think that there is not any way to get things better. That is why, they ignore essential elements of life such as sleep, a healthy diet, exercise, self-care, etc. 

It would also have people attracted to fear-based temporary distractions such as alcohol, drugs, compulsive shopping, over-eating- all to avoid failure, shame, and pain.

Struggling with Personal Relationships 

When confidence is on board, personal relationships suffer inevitably. People believe that they are not worthy of maintaining a healthy relationship. That is why, when we are low on self-esteem, we do not present our best self in front of our significant other or our family members.

Believing You Are Powerless to Make A Change

One of the greatest effects of lack of confidence is that you start to believe that your thoughts do not matter to others. This falsehood does not only deepen the rage inside you but also take your self-image to a downward spiral.

How Confidence Affects Performance?

We must identify the causes of lack of self-confidence or else, it could have effects on one’s career. Here are some ways in which lack of confidence affects our performance and productivity at work.

Motivation Loss

No matter what the cause, a lack of confidence will have repercussions in your professional life. Not only would you be uncomfortable in the work environment but you would feel cold about doing projects or assignments. This leads us directly to increased stress. Hence, you would notice losing the willingness to work and motivation to do better there. 

Failed Social Relationships 

People with low confidence find it a daunting task to speak before their superiors or employers. Only because they hold negative perceptions about themselves and things that people around them have the perceptions too. 

All the negative sentiments gradually turn to warp and fail social relationships at work.

Feeling of Exhaustion- Lack of Productivity 

People with low confidence always feel as if they are not appropriate for the job they have. This factor makes them think that their colleagues have more qualities and a set of skills as compared to themselves. At the end of the day, they end up feeling burnt out and exhausted at work.

Difficulties with Reaching Objectives

In most of the cases regarding low self-confidence, people draw themselves to conclusions and recreate make-believe scenarios in minds, consequently, drawing them away from their objectives. In extreme cases, lack of confidence can even lead some of the best people to give up on their careers.

Not Strong Enough to Be Open for Criticism 

One negative effect of the absence of confidence is that we try to avoid criticism about our work as much as possible. It’s a well-known fact that to be successful, one must be open to criticism at all times. Yet people with little to no confidence take criticism personally and end up working with little to no productivity.

Not Taking Risks 

The absence of confidence in us might put a halt in advancing our careers. Most people let go of amazing opportunities because they are scared to take risks. Moreover, they also refrain from taking charge or responsibility. 


Lack of confidence also leads to indecisive traits at work. People find it very difficult to find decisions because of the make-believe scenarios in their minds. Therefore, it’s important to take notes of the underlying effects and causes of lack of self-confidence and do something about it.

boost your confidence

Tips to Boost Confidence and Raise Self-Esteem

Nobody in this world is born or gifted by God with limitless self-confidence. If you see someone with utmost confidence, it is because he or she has worked hard in building it up.

Confidence is always something that you learn to develop over time. It does not occur overnight. 

So, here are some tips and solutions to boost your confidence, gradually but surely.

Visualize Yourself as You Long to Be Often

Visualization is the ultimate technique or must I say, solution to create an image of yourself that you want to become. When struggling with lack of confidence, we build a pool and inadequate perception of ourselves. Practicing visualization to see a fantastic and adequate version of yourself could lift the curse of low self-confidence.

Say Out Affirmative Statements Loudly

Affirmations are powerful and positive statements that we often say to ourselves to change how we view ourselves. Reciting them in mind would do you little good but if you say them aloud, they could be very effective.

For example, if you hate something about your physical features, say something appreciative. 

It is better to frame these statements as questions so that you could answer them in your brain.

Do One Thing That Scares You, Regularly 

The rest of the world is as insecure as you. So, do not underestimate your power. The best way to overcome your fears that cause lack of confidence is to face them. 

By doing something that scares you every day, not only would you get experience but would gather enough courage to develop self-confidence. However, you need to leave your comfort zone first.

Try Approving of Yourself

Due to lack of confidence, its possible that the critic in you has become inaccurate and overactive. Try cognitive-behavioral therapies to question your inner critic. Look for evidence that shows that your inner critic is wrong in so many places.

Moreover, try to congratulate and reward yourself for little successes as this practice helps you in regaining confidence.

Go For 100 Days Rejection Challenge 

One way to take criticism is to feel nothing about it. To build up self-confidence you need to ask people around you for crazy requests so that they can reject you every single day of this challenge. The main purpose here is to desensitize you of rejection. Here is an outline of this challenge.

Overall Thoughts

Start nurturing the confidence in you by setting yourself up for completing small goals. Once you become a pro at completing small goals, you can move on to harder levels. When low on confidence, always remind yourself how far you have come.

Become Suave!

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