What does it mean to build your self-confidence as a Nigerian woman?
In times past, society had a way of conditioning women such that they were believed to belong to the kitchen and the other room. During this era, if you have self confidence as a Nigerian woman and are self reliant you are considered arrogant and unfit for marriage, hence Nigerian women were expected to be demure and dependent.
What does it mean to build your self-confidence as a Nigerian woman?
A number of Nigerian women no doubt have been held bound by that stereotype and as a result, they’d rather fold their hands and watch the menfolk do all the hard work and fill all the important positions.
However, in recent times, that stereotype has been trashed to the bin of times, although there are still some traces of it in the present day. With the advent of civilization, Nigerian women are now expected to play more roles and hold pivotal positions in organizations and the society at large.
In this article, we’re going to look at ways you can build your self-confidence as a woman, especially as a Nigerian woman, and how you can overcome that stereotype that women should only concern themselves with kitchen and bedroom affairs.
What is Self-confidence?
Self-confidence is necessary tool you need to have as a person. Now, what is self-confidence? Simply put, self-confidence is being confident in one’s self in relation to one’s abilities, talents, skills.
Being self-confident is a necessary tool to survive in this cruel world. Ordinarily, it is believed to be a man’s world, such that women are not given equal opportunities as men. However, that practice is already wearing off as we now have women who have broken the glass-ceiling– not literally, though– and have gone ahead to excel in their chosen careers.
We have the like of Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, who is Nigerian and was once a finance minister in Nigeria; Serena Williams, who is a four-time Grand Slam winner. The list is quite long, though. These women were self-confident, hence why they excelled. You need to be self-confident in order to achieve your goals.
4 Ways to build your self-confidence as a Nigerian woman?
This is the first step to achieving self-confidence. Nigerian women need to understand that if you want to build self-confidence, you need to be a reader. Thus, readers are leaders. Reading books does not only include reading school materials, it also subsumes reading materials outside your school. Books help you attain knowledge and knowledge helps you become self-confident.
Have you ever been in a situation where you answered a question nobody else knew the answer to? How did you feel? Wait! You felt confident and proud, right? Yeah, that’s what knowledge does to you. You feel happy when you know something nobody else knows and that in turn makes you confident about your cognitive and intellectual ability, including your skills.
Sadly, there are a number of Nigerian women who do not like reading and women who are not book smart get taken advantage of. Hence, the increase in sex-for-grades cases in Africa and Nigeria, especially. As a woman, in order to excel in your given career, you need to read hard and wide. Cultivate an habit for reading today, and give your confidence the nitro boost it needs.
Learn a skill
This is just as important as reading books. The importance of learning a skill as a woman cannot be overstated. Learning a skill is not limited to skills such as hair styling, fashion designing, bead making, etc; it also cuts across digital skills such as digital marketing, copywriting, graphics designing, web design and development, programming, writing.
Learning a skill gives you the opportunity to be independent as a woman and this, by extension builds your confidence.
When you don’t have to rely on the menfolk for fulfilling your basic needs, your self-confidence experiences a turnaround. Although, it is the norm in the Nigerian society for a woman to rely on her husband or boyfriend for her basic needs, however, this practice is no longer prevalent as quite a number of women have changed the status quo and broken the glass ceiling.
This has positively affected their self-confidence and has made them self-reliant. Don’t be woman who relies on menfolk for everything, else you men will regard you as someone fit for pastime, and this can mess with your confidence and bring it to level zero.
One thing worthy of note under this point is volunteering. You can learn and become good at a skill by volunteering for various organizations.
Whether you an introvert or extrovert, you need to socialize. Being an introvert wouldn’t help your self-confidence as a Nigerian woman; it would rather make a mince meat of it. You cannot hide in one corner of your room and say you want to build your confidence.
You need to meet people, make new friends, go places and acquire new experiences. This may be quite hard if you’re an introvert. But you have to learn to come out of your cocoon and face the world. This will be one of the best decisions you will ever made considering the fact that it will open your eyes to your capabilities.
It is in socializing that you chance upon life-changing opportunities. You can’t be changemaker if you confine to your room alone.
Quoting the Holy book of the Christians,
“Let your light so shine. A lamp cannot be hidden under a bushel. It has to be set in a way that gives the whole of the house light.”
In the same vein, you have to step out of your confinement as a woman and impact the world with your nous. Although, you may get hurt and disappointment from the people you meet and friends you make, it’s all part of the process. It adds to your wealth of experience in relating with people.
As they say, “your network is net worth”. If you don’t socialize, you cannot build your network. This means that it is the people you know that can change your life, either positively or negatively.
Loving yourself as a woman
The last, but not the least is loving yourself a woman. This is another way of building your self-confidence as a Nigerian woman. What do I mean? You cannot build self-confidence if you think less of yourself. The Latin maxim, “Nemo dat quod non habet” translates in English to as “You cannot give what you don’t have.”
Similarly, if you think less of yourself as a woman, if you think you’re not beautiful enough, if you think you’re not tall enough, if you think you’re too short, if you think you’re too fat, if you think you’re too dark or that you’re too fair, your confidence will remain at ground zero, it won’t move an inch. To build your self-confidence as a Nigerian woman, you need to love yourself, even with all the imperfections because your scar is beautiful. Be happy!
Samuel Ikperu is a passionate, enthusiastic but lazy writer and proofreader with interests that cut across politics, fashion, sports, lifestyle and health.
He hopes to move the world with his pen and writing nous.
He also has interests in music and poetry and networking marketing.