I’ve had my bicycle for about two years now, but I haven’t ridden it very much. It’s an older bike, but it was designed for racing so I know that it can handle higher speeds and the necessary stopping from those higher speeds. I know what it can do.
But that doesn’t mean that I know its limits. I haven’t spent enough time in the saddle to know what it can or can’t do when I’m riding it. I don’t know how sharp of a turn I can make without sliding or how hard I can push it while standing without throwing off the balance. To know those things I have to spend time riding and feeling out those limits.
When I was younger I wondered how I could build my confidence. I read magazine articles and tried to study confident people to figure it out. Looking back, I think I just needed more time in the saddle. I don’t believe you can rush confidence – it just comes from surviving life. I’m confident in my abilities now because I’ve been able to overcome every obstacle I’ve encountered. It hasn’t always turned out great, but I’ve always survived.
So if you’re feeling a lack of confidence around something in your life, find a way to do it more. Safely feel out those limits. It’s just like riding a bike.