“I decided to be confident one day, and then I just was. I think it’s a conscious decision. Everything in society tells you to hate yourself, but you know what? If you decide to love yourself, it’s an act of revolution.” – Gaby Dunn
I can’t begin to explain how much your life changes once you begin to see your own value. You begin to see yourself in a different light. You feel happier. You feel deserving. You feel like your eyes have been opened because a veil has been lifted. It truly is a whole experience to someone who has been living in insecurity most of their life.
As far back as I can remember, I’ve always struggled with being insecure and having low self esteem. Maybe because I always felt like I just didn’t quite fit in anywhere or maybe it was because I felt like I wasn’t good enough to fit in in the first place. I struggled with not liking what I looked like, not in the sense of body image of being too fat or too skinny, but more so with my face. I broke my nose when I was little and it never healed properly so it has always been somewhat more prominent than “normal” noses and I was always made fun of in grade school because of it. Children would call me names or say I was ugly. It was pretty tough, and I can’t tell you how many times I came home crying because of it. And although, I am now past all those childhood hurts, other more adult insecurities have replaced them.
I struggled with not feeling worthy of being loved or that I wasn’t good enough or deserving of it. I always believed that I had to earn love and I would seek after it constantly by trying to be perfect in every area of my life so I would be deemed deserving. I never realized how unhealthy this was until I was in the midst of my “breakdown.” My mother was the one who told me that the reason why I felt so overwhelmed and out of control was because I did not love myself enough, and that once I began to see my value, my whole world would begin to change. I didn’t really understand what she meant. I didn’t hate myself did I? I wasn’t one of THOSE people. I had this idea that insecure people were equivalent to those crazy psychotic women that you see in films who are portrayed as the crazy ex-girlfriend who’s completely insecure. That was not me! I loved myself right?
But in reality, I didn’t. Because if I truly did love myself, I wouldn’t feel so fragile and unworthy. I wouldn’t be constantly seeking out affirmation from other people that I was valuable. I wouldn’t strive for perfection or go crazy over trying to hide my flaws. I wouldn’t be embarrassed or ashamed of who I was or try to change any aspect of my personality or looks.
See when you really begin to love yourself, you begin to see your own value and how truly priceless you are. You begin to understand that you don’t need to be perfect and that imperfection is actually something quite beautiful. You begin to love your flaws because they make you unique. You begin to live according to your own standards and not try to adapt to any one else’s expectations of you. You stop seeking out other’s affections and instead let them come to you because you are worth to be pursued. You walk around with an air of confidence, which flows into fearlessness.
Having confidence is not something we are necessarily born with like a trait. Yes, of course some people are more confident than others, just because it is their personality to be more extroverted and outgoing, which requires a form of confidence. But in reality, anybody can be confident. Because confidence is a choice. We can choose it and we have every right to choose it. It may not come naturally or easy at first, which is ok, but once we begin to choose it over and over again, we begin to develop confidence like a muscle and it becomes stronger.
I feel like the first step towards acquiring that confidence is making that choice to love yourself instead of practicing self hate, as the world mostly tells us to do. It is a kind of revolution within ourselves because we are conditioned towards feeling like we must be perfect in such an imperfect, fallen world. But there is no such thing as perfect, and when we learn to love our imperfect selves, our confidence will also magically grow, and when that happens, our world will also begin to expand and so many possibilities will become available to us.
Confident and secure people are the ones who experience true movement, because confidence is what gives you courage to expand and grow. We can’t grow unless we take risks, and we can’t take risks without feeling a sense of confidence that there is a chance that we will succeed. And if we are too busy hating ourselves, instead of loving ourselves, we will always remain in the same place – unhappy.
The Self Love Daily Challenge #041: Make that choice to start being confident.
Consciously make that choice today to start being confident. Remember, with everything, it takes practice, but with time you will start to notice change within yourself. Go out and do something challenging, even if you fail, it will build confidence in you just for the sake of trying. Stop searching for other’s affirmations and seek your own instead. Practice self love, instead of self hate. Dress the part. Put on something that makes you feel good about yourself. Groom yourself nice. Walk upright and don’t slouch. Every little bit of effort counts towards creating the confidence you seek.