Your past experience provides a framework for thinking about the future. You can draw on that experience to gain perspective and avoid repeating mistakes. But measuring your future success by the yardstick of past experiences (particularly failures) can really sap your self-confidence.
Our friends at financial blog Wise Bread point out that understanding and learning from your past is certainly a worthy pursuit. And it's something we just can't help thinking about.
The truth is, we all screw up. Even the best and brightest have moments that they wish they had handled better -- opportunities that they missed, or obstacles they failed to overcome. And we all long to have those moments back because we believe we'd be happier now if we had only acted differently then.
The problem can come when you start buying into your own story, overthinking and dwelling on those past experiences (whether they are successes or failures). We all-too-often let those experiences define us, resting on the laurels of our success or letting our failures bleed the confidence we need to engage in new pursuits. What can we do about it?
Cut yourself some slack. Learn from those past hiccups, but don't carry them around as proof of your worth (or lack thereof). You can't start building confidence if you're busy dwelling on all the reasons you don't already have it.
Be sure to hit up the full post over at Wise Bread for more great tips on boosting your self-confidence.