09 November, 2012

Are You Confident?

I have always thought of myself as a confident person. You have to be have a blog right? We're totally up ourselves! Hah. Seriously though, I've always considered myself confident. Well, not always ALWAYS. When I was younger it was a bit of a struggle but we're all like that until we find our place in the world. But since my uni days, I've always felt happy with who I am and how I look. It may not be 'perfect' but I'm happy with it. I own it proudly.
However, a recent post series I've been following along with has started to make me question all the things I thought I knew about myself. Long time big sister to this blog, Suger Coat It has created the #ConfidentYou post series for the month of November, posting each day with little tips and exercises to work your way to loving yourself just a bit more and building up your confidence no matter what stage you're at.
Day 6 was the one that hit home with me the most. It was about making eye contact with people and showing them who you really are. Now I am dynamite at doing this when need be. Professional situations, the need to impress etc. But when it REALLY matters? I tend to look over people's shoulders or look at the environment just around them rather than looking into their eyes. It's not because I don't care about them or what they have to say. In fact it's the opposite. I am scared of them seeing too deeply into me. I know that what's inside me is worth seeing. But the scary part, the part I don't like saying out loud or even acknowledging really, is that what is inside me is fragile.
I also happen to be quite transparent. Can't hide who I am or how open, honest and caring I am. I care so much. Maybe too much. I sometimes wish I didn't. But then I don't. Because I wouldn't be me. I know the caring is a good thing. A quality people admire in me. But sometimes it can backfire and I end up getting hurt. Sometimes people take advantage of it. Sometimes I just can't stop caring about someone, even when I know it's not getting me anywhere. 
So that was my revelation for the week. And I slowly am working on and will continue to work on facing that fear. That age old quote about feeling the fear and doing it anyway sticks in my mind. That's living. Life is scary. There are feelings and decisions and consequences. That is the thrill of being alive. So suck it up princess. Feel the fear and do it anyway. Look into those eyes. Be seen. All the way in there. Just let it happen. Trust that you are smart enough to keep yourself protected. Be brave enough to be a little vulnerable.
It's only Day 9 and already this series has me thinking so much. Like how often girls (mostly) can get sucked into being in competition. And how that leads to inner criticism and comparison. Which inevitably leads to negativity, low self-esteem. Confidence doesn't come from being better than someone else. It comes from being strong enough to acknowledge how much that person has to offer. Don't compete. Be strong enough to say, I don't need to put you down to feel better about myself. In fact, here's a compliment because you deserve it and because maybe it might make you feel good. 
Honestly, complimenting someone else, whether it be someone you know or a complete stranger is really uplifting. I remembered today in the toilets at work when I complimented a lady on her shoes. They were AMAZING! And so I told her so. And her whole face lit up. And I remembered what it felt like to light up like that. How great a compliment from a stranger can feel. And I felt great for giving her that feeling. Feelgoods all round guys!
Follow along with me, I'd love to hear your stories too. Confidence can be hard sometimes but it's so valuable. You all deserve to feel happy with yourselves. I hope you do.

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