Note: I wrote this blogpost over 4 years ago and just now found it in my archives of unpublished blogposts. It’s amazing to see how far I’ve come from when I wrote this to today. Hope it serves you! x
One of my greatest challenges has been self confidence – feeling full of this magical sustenance that ignites from within. I really can’t pinpoint where we learn lack of self confidence.
Perhaps it’s our education that is so set on comparing and putting us into categories. You’re an A student, so proud of you! You’re a B student, so average! You’re a C student, you’re below average! You’re a D student, you’re just dumb! You’re an F student, you’re a failure!
Perhaps it’s our culture that is set on telling us who we are. You’re an Indian girl who will be a doctor and marry a boy who is a doctor and you’ll have three children who will all be doctors – only then, I can ever be proud of you!
Perhaps it’s the media that is constantly emphasizing that we’re not good enough. You’re going to have to lose 30 pounds, cut out those carbs, get an ass like Kim Kardashian, watch beauty gurus on YouTube to learn how to “contour” your face because it’s too fat, wear clothes that make you look sexy then, a guy will buy you a drink at the bar and whatever you do make sure you are someone else because who wants to be an original anyway!
Perhaps it’s our parents who love us with conditions. You didn’t get an A – you’re so stupid! You are Gay – how could you be so selfish! You want to marry a boy outside of our race – you’re a shame! You want to follow your passion – just be practical and get a secure job!
No wonder the constant gloom of low self-esteem is the normal for so many of us. Who has time to be self confident when your head is filled with so many ideas, beliefs and thoughts from so many outside sources?
We believe more in what other people think of us then, we actually believe ourselves.
Then, who is really running the show – not you! So there is no room left for self-confidence to make an empowered choice.
We have to care more about what I think of myself, then what someone else does! Why because I have to live with myself and the consequences of the choices I make.
As I continue to contemplate – I realize more and more that my low self-esteem was learned! It was taught by the constant feedback I received about myself from others. You’re useless, you’re worthless, you’re stupid, you’re so ugly, you’re so immature, you’re so selfish, you’re such a shame, I hate you, I wish you’d die.
This was the dialogue on repeat in my head for so many years especially the most developmental years of my life: my childhood.
We learn to relate to ourselves the way others relate to us.
This is where we learn who we are purely based on what we’ve been told about who we are, through the judgement of our actions and behaviors and the love we are given or not given.
This is where our confidence levels are developed. What we think we are capable of doing or not doing. Who we think we are or who we aren’t. What kind of love we are worthy of receiving and not receiving.
We deny ourselves, we blame ourselves, we limit ourselves, we hold ourselves back. Because who am I to be anything other than miserable. We stay in misery, we keep ourselves from feeling good. We think this is all that I deserve!
I was here – completely shattered pieces of glass broken apart by the voices, opinions and feedback from everyone around me.
When I hit my rock bottom – what I call my divine storm; I had to make a choice to either continue being the way I have always been or change who I am – give birth to the real me.
I decided to take full responsibility of my life because no one is coming to save me.
I chose to empower myself. Self empowerment is the path to confidence. If everyday we can empower ourselves to make a different choice, we can slowly begin to learn new ways of relating to ourselves.
Today I made the choice to monitor my self-talk – I learned that there is a very mean voice that speaks, I don’t want to listen to her anymore because she doesn’t make me feel good.
Today I made the choice to take the stairs – I learned that yes it’s uncomfortable, but I feel strong.
Today I made the choice to meditate – I learned that sitting in my presence is a beautiful gift I rarely give to myself, I need to do this more.
No matter what choices you make – each choice will either help you build self confidence muscles or keep you in the vicious cycle of self pity and disempowering low self-esteem.
Everything you know about who you are – you’ve learned. The real you, who is that? You can’t be taught who the real you is – that is something you can only remember if you choose to lift up the veil that is masking your true identity.