Character Chats

What is Confidence?

What does confidence feel like and look like?

Here at True Balance Karate in Downers Grove, Illinois, we have a social-emotional learning program called True Character.

I’m Master H, owner and chief instructor here at the studio, and I have two master’s degrees in education. One of them is in developing curriculum, and here we have developed a program that best meets the needs of everyone from as young as three to as old as 85.


And this month we are talking about confidence. Confidence, it’s the belief in yourself. It is the belief in those around you.

And all month long, we’re going to talk about confidence and what it looks like, what it feels like, how do we show it, how do we encourage it in others? Lots of different ways that we can talk about confidence.

How does it feel?

Today, we’re talking about what it feels like, so I want you to take a minute and think about something that you know you do really, really well. When you are absolutely sure of yourself, when you know you do this one really well. Maybe it’s a front kick in karate, maybe it’s soccer, maybe it’s math, maybe it’s asking good questions or being a good listener.

When you are absolutely sure that you do this well, you are demonstrating confidence. It’s that sense of ability, capability, knowledge that you know what is happening, and we try to instill that here in the students with different things of how we carry ourselves.

How does it look?

So, what confidence looks like, we’ll do a scared kid/confident kid kind of a drill, and we’ll have all the kids stand up tall, shoulders back, head up straight, exuding that sense of confidence. We’ll have them, as they’re going through different drills here at the studio, do them in a confident way.

Show your confidence when you’re doing your punch or show your confidence when you’re showing your form, so that when you start to demonstrate it, you start to feel it, and then you start to build it within yourself.

How do we show it?

And so, as we go through the month, as we talk about confidence, think about different ways that you could stand a little taller, that you could have your head up a little higher. Take a moment and do a little self-assessment of yourself throughout the day and ask yourself, how confident are you feeling right now? And see what you can do at that moment in time.

Maybe it’s giving yourself a little pep talk, like, “I can do this. I know what I’m doing. I’m going to take it step by step.” Those different tasks or tools along the way can help us grow our confidence.

So, I look forward to seeing all of you on the mat as we build our confidence together. Thanks!


True Balance Karate was founded in 2012 by Master Sue and Paul Helsdon.

We offer kids karate lessons for pre-school children ages 3-6 and elementary age kids ages 7 and up. These lessons are designed to develop the critical building blocks kids need — specialized for their age group — for school excellence and later success in life.

Our adult martial arts training is a complete adult fitness and conditioning program for adults who want to lose weight, get (and stay) in shape, or learn self-defense in a supportive environment.

Instructors can answer questions or be contacted 24 hours of the day, 7 days a week at 630-663-2000. You can also contact us here