Confidence is key

Guest Blog by Sorcha O'Connor

Confidence is not always a trait that everyone is born with - but it can be obtained with practise. The saying "fake it till you make it " comes to mind.

Being confident can sometimes be misconstrued as being cocky or being full of yourself; it's important to remember confidence is in fact very different to thinking people should bow down before your greatness.

Being confident is a culmination of small things. Being able to ask for help, saying hello, smiling and chatting to new people all require a certain level of confidence. Being true to yourself and your goals also requires confidence in yourself and this is something I'd like to discuss.

Being the best 'you'

Teenagers are brilliant at putting themselves - and their peers - down. I've twoConfused Student younger teen sisters who routinely deem themselves as no good at school subjects or as having the worst hair in the world - and having only entered my twenties, I've also been there, done that.

Teenagers are also guilty of a deep desire to simply fit in. It's no one's fault, per se - it's almost like adolescents are hardwired in this way. No one wants to be seen to try too hard but no one wants to be a failure either; a double-edged sword if there ever was one.

Yet it would be a pity to let this continue throughout your teenage years and miss out on being the best 'you' you can be. When you have something going for you, it's a crying shame to waste it. You might not think it but there are people out there who would be only delighted to be as great as you are at sports, writing or art.

Recognise your worth

So how does one go about addressing confidence issues and getting the most out of your talents to in turn achieve your goals? For teens, this can be a hard task but to begin by adjusting your attitude towards your abilities can set you on the right path.

Recognise that you have a talent and work at it. It's nicer to be remembered as a great basketball player than someone who gave up just because their friends weren't bothered to turn up to training anymore.

In academic terms, knowing that studying hard doesn't mean you're a nerd or a loser is important. Secondary school can be demanding both socially and scholastically but the main thing to remember is that your grades are no one's business but your own. Decide to work hard and you will reap the rewards. Being an intelligent person is nothing to hide - if you've got brains to burn, burn them!

Socially, teenagers can feel awkward and uncomfortable and there isn't always a fix-all solution. Parties, discos and even walking down town after school can cause some teenagers to question themselves. However you need to put things into perspective. When you socialise you're there to have a good time. Take a deep breath, smile, let your personality shine through and tell shyness where to go!

Sorcha O'Connor

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Teenagers can have big dreams and aspirations, but can be at a loss where to start, or think they are too shy to go after what they want. They also have to juggle expectations from parents and teachers, a demanding study schedule as well as navigating intense friendships and peer relationships.

#SavvyTeenAcademy offers a caring environment for turbo-charged, hands-on learning. It will be an intense week of transformation, with lots of fun and new friendships.

After five days at #SavvyTeenAcademy, students will be armed with a panoply of practical tools they will be able to use in many life situations: passing exams, applying for jobs, networking and confidently taking their life in the best direction.

#SavvyTeenAcademy is NOT a traditional course based on the school curriculum.

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Practice those skills in a supportive, affirming environment.

Meet other people just like you and cheer each other on as you watch your potential unfold.

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