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Integrity vs Neediness

In confidence coaching sessions, we often talk about the difference between making it happen and letting it happen. This is at the centre of the difference between acting needy and acting with integrity.

If you think of things in terms of cause and effect – e.g. I’m going to go and have a conversation with someone, so I am the cause and they are the effect – somebody who’s trying to make it happen focuses on the effect.

They focus on the other person’s reaction, on trying to control that reaction to make force it to be something that they want. Before the conversation even begins, they have a basic idea of their preferred outcome and are already getting needy for it.

A confident person, on the other hand, focuses on the cause, i.e. themselves. They focus on making sure that they speak with integrity, that they’re bold, that they’re doing things for the right reasons regardless of the reaction, etc.

The only things a confident person might think about prior to a conversation is their own values and self-development goals, all of which have nothing to do with the other person or how they’d prefer the other person to react.

When you go into that letting it happen mode, you will work with whichever effect occurs; you’ll work with whatever reaction you get. Your focus will be on responding well to whatever happens, rather than hoping for a specific reaction.

Confident people keep focusing back on that cause – themselves and their values.

Whereas when you try to make it happen, when you try to control other people and results, you just end up miserable and needy… even if you’re good at it!.

Ironically, those who let things happen as they may eventually end up getting better results too! Why? Because they polarise the external world into adapting to their way of being.

For example, if you try to focus on being honest with people rather than making them like you, eventually you’ll only be surrounded by people who like you for who you are because you’ll repulse everyone else, which means your social “results” will start to consistently match your preferences.

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