I don't think I ever thought about this topic seriously before. But I used to have no confidence at all. I grew up in a small very conservative town, very male centered. Women took care of the kids, cooked, cleaned, etc. Men brought in the paycheck and pretty much were in charge. I was a skinny glasses wearing girl who loved reading and did well in school. I was always more interested in learning than in sports or homemaking. This was before being slender was desirable. Instead I was teased for being so slender. I had to sort of hide my intelligence because I was teased for it also. Looking back it was probably jealousy but at the time I just felt inferior because of my glasses, size, and my abilities in school. I did not really date in high school, was not part of the "cool kids", etc. And I tried not be noticeable in class, just quietly got great grades and a scholarship.
But one day as I was getting ready to head off to college I decided that maybe I could change the situation. I was going off to a university where there would be people who did not know I was a nobody. Being slender began to be more desirable. I decided to "act the part" as if I were really somebody.
That decision changed my life. I started talking to guys as I had seen the popular girls do. I found that if I relaxed and stopped worrying about being accepted that I started having fun. I was more involved in my classes and started studying with other students who also loved learning. My roommates became jealous because of my social life but I did not care. I slowly gained more confidence. I stopped worrying so much about what other people thought about me. I focused on living my life the way I wanted to, doing the things I wanted to do.
That attitude has stayed with me through the years mostly. Of course, there will be times when I feel inadequate in a situation but mostly I just ignore what others think and do what I think is right and best for me (us, since I have a family). I am happily married to a wonderful guy, have had children, have had various interesting jobs, and traveled a lot (I love travel). As you can tell by my persona, I feel like I am a Lucky Lady.