Have you ever had that experience when, you know you can do something because you’ve practiced it over and over in the mirror or in the privacy of your own mind. Then, when the moment of truth shows up, you freeze, fumble and totally loose your confidence.

Confidence is such an elusive thing for me.  It’s something that I really, really have to work at.  Where did I loose it?  Did I ever have it?  How can I make sure that my students have confidence to defend and advocate for themselves?  These are all questions that I ask myself.

I play the french horn and recently had a rehearsal that I was SO ready to play.  I had practiced my solos, the tricky intricate parts to the Beatles medley where the horn part is exposed and wonderful, and the high notes that tended to go sharp and sound pinched.  In the practice room – WOW- it sounded like the Beatles themselves had gotten back together to play one last concert at our small college in Wyoming.

However, at rehearsal, I choked, I splatted and I sounded more like a beginning band student.  ARG!!  After rehearsal, I played it, perfect.  So now my task was to go back to that practice room and work on ……. confidence.

This issue that I have caused me to reflect on the students that I teach in my classroom.  Perhaps they suffer from lack of confidence, just like I do.  Perhaps that’s why they those high stakes tests don’t always show their true abilities.  Maybe I should should have them doing more practicing  of self-confidence.


french horn

6 thoughts on “Confidence

  1. I love how you described confidence as elusive-it’s so true, for me at least too! It’s amazing how something that seems so unconnected to the ability that is being tested (whether it be musical ability, cognitive ability etc) can have such an impact on the end result! Perhaps sharing that experience with your students would give some of them the motivation and security as the stepping stone towards higher confidence!
    Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s an interesting idea you raise… how does our confidence affect our ability? How can we be sure we’re measuring ability – and not a lack of confidence?

    I’m sorry your music didn’t come out as you had hoped. I hope you get another chance to try again.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ll never forget the day (over 30 years ago) that I was to play the piano for my parents anniversary Mass. I had practiced for weeks, sat down, looked at the music and drew a total blank. For several seconds, I couldn’t play a note. Thankfully, I got a grip but I’m sure it was lack of confidence. You make a wonderful point and all of us need to bolster our confidence whenever and however we can.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You make an excellent point. The children do great when the scaffolds are in place but really lose their confidence when asked to go it alone. Practicing confidence, really good idea!


  5. …”those high stakes tests don’t show their ability” Thank you for putting into words what I was feeling. There’s a whole world beyond the bubble sheets and chrome books. Kids are so much more than a test score.

    Liked by 1 person

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