Dear Paws to Talk,

Recently, I was put in a nerve-wracking situation. During a meeting at work, I was unexpectedly asked to stand up and speak about myself and my contributions to the company.

I stood up and felt light-headed. I mumbled through some of my key contributions with everyone staring and probably judging me. After a few minutes, I sat down, unsure what exactly I said and knowing that I never want to do that again.

I thought that I was just shy in my personal life. My friends usually make decisions about what we do when spending time together. I am content to have the company. Even if I don’t want to go somewhere they do, I never express my opinion. I don’t want to lose them as friends.

At work, I thrive. I quietly do my job exceptionally and have continued to get promotions.

However, I have never had to share my thoughts in front of such a big group. Everyone keeps telling me how I need to be more confident in myself. I am starting to see their point. How do I become more confident in myself?

-Mindy the Human

 

Howl Mindy,

We’re pleased that you are realizing you need to let your voice be heard. Otherwise, we would be forced to travel to your home and give you tough love consisting of paw nudges and staring contests. You are lucky because we can be ruthless at both.

Some beings seem to be born with more confidence than others. However, everyone has something they have to work on. Bella is trying not to be so pushy when the humans are minutes late with the kibble. DiDi is trying to not ruin a perfectly good game of fetch by stealing the ball and hiding it.

Deciding what you want to improve is like finishing half of your kibble. You’re on your way to being full.

So now  you want to be more confident. Think about how this can be achieved. We suggest you go to a serene place (like DiDi’s favorite hideout bush in the yard) and contemplate what parts of your life need a confidence boost. Maybe it is time to tell your friends how you really feel? Perhaps, you can approach your boss and ask to present yourself and work again?

Lastly, when you find your confidence, don’t be surprised if others react differently to you. Some may praise you and some may wonder what happened to you. Anyone who is not supportive of you improving yourself may not be the right animal to spend time with.

When you become the best version of yourself, you get to run with the finest pack.

Woof,

Bella and DiDi