Confidence: Something I think many of us strive to have, but not always the easiest thing to find.
Confidence (at least to me) is tricky because from a young age I’ve personally struggled with trying to have confidence while not coming across as cocky. And there are certain stories you end up telling yourself along the way about what it means to be confident. In some instances confidence can be a great thing. But one step too far and all of the sudden you’re cocky… And no one likes cocky. Or so we tell ourselves.
I grew up dancing and going to various dance conventions over the years. If you’re not familiar with dance conventions you’re in a big ballroom with usually hundreds of other dancers close to your age. You typically learn a short piece of choreography and practice going through it countless times. Then you’re sectioned off in groups so you have room to dance “full-out”. I always strived to look like those beautiful dancers just putting it all out there, dancing their hearts out. And when it was my turn to move across the floor something internally stopped me from truly dancing with everything I had, keeping me from pushing myself outside of my comfort zone. It wasn’t until my older teenage years I had to really try to let go and just dance with confidence – which if I am being honest STILL wasn’t 100% confident.
Confidence is this muscle we have to stretch and use over and over again. For some it comes naturally, and for others (like myself in different situations) it is something that needs work.
Exhibit A: I’ve never liked getting my picture taken.
I don’t know what happened when I was younger but I’ve never felt confident when it came to getting my photos taken. Any school picture that came back I pretty much hated. Sad, right? I think I saw myself in pictures and didn’t think I looked like what I saw in the mirror – does that make sense? But from a young age I’ve never felt like I was photogenic and that is a story I have carried with me for years. And now that I run a blog where photos of myself are somewhat required to an extent, that lack of confidence can be hindering.
Every photo shoot I schedule I actually have to give myself a pep talk beforehand. “I am confident. I am strong. I am beautiful.” Repeat 100 times.
And with social media it’s obviously easy to compare what other peoples photos look like and I think, “Why can’t I look like that?” And then this internal dialogue starts where I remind myself I could use some more confidence in myself.
Also, I have to remind myself that I am not a model. Let’s just face the facts, okay? And just because I am not a model doesn’t mean I won’t look good in photographs. I am just me, and I am getting used to that.
But confidence isn’t just about your appearance
Of course confidence isn’t just about how you look, it’s about how you feel and also your self worth. To be honest I haven’t had many problems when it comes to feeling confident in my appearance per say. I wore some weird shit back in the day, and I still wear some weird shit because I don’t actually care too much what people think. I’ve always had my own style, didn’t like following the “rules” and never had a problem choosing function over fashion. I may have a fashion degree but functional design and textiles were my favorite, not high-end stereotypical fashion (not that there’s anything wrong with that, it’s just not me).
But I think for me, the lack of confidence is somewhat internal. Possibly stemming from my perfectionist tendencies and being an introvert (INFJ for the most part), making it hard to step outside of my comfort zone and push myself towards the end goal, for fear I’ll mess up.
But we ALL mess up.
My lack of confidence stopped me from starting my blog earlier than I did. It stopped me from getting certified as a personal trainer and teaching class in college, which is when I REALLY wanted to start – not 8 years from then.
And I suppose confidence comes back around to self love and acceptance too. We can work on loving ourselves and everything that comes with it, finding confidence in ourselves to just be who we want to be – not who we think we are.
So what’s my point?
So why am I telling you all of this? Well, because I want to get real with you and remind you that NO one has their shit figured out. I wanted to share my story because I think it’s easy o assume things about people. But in reality we’re all working on something. It’s easier than ever to compare and analyze the lives of others – especially those on the internet. But everyone is human. We’re all struggling with shit behind the scenes. We are all dealing with something.
Confidence is a muscle you must strengthen
And I want to remind you that confidence is something you can work on. As Jen Sincero suggests we were all born with it, we just have to find a way to get it back, which takes practice and time. Time working on believing in ourselves, loving ourselves and finding confidence in ourselves. Telling ourselves, “YOU’VE GOT THIS.”
My question for you…
- Do you struggle with having confidence?
- What have you done to help build up your confidence?