“Confidence is something you create within yourself by believing in who you are” -Unknown
I’ve been wanting to write about this for a while now but I didn’t know how to go about this without seeming, for lack of a better word, cocky. And that’s exactly why I need to write it. Because being confident shouldn’t equate to being self-centered or self-absorbed.
Last time I was home, my mother and I were talking and somehow in our conversation it was brought up that she didn’t want me posting so many photos of my face online. First thought: what’s wrong with my face? 😦 Second thought: my mom is a rather private person with no social media bearings, so I figured she was concerned about my safety per usual. After nagging for a reason behind this request, she finally muttered “people just might think you’re…full of yourself.” Firstly, if you know me relatively well it’s quite transparent that what other people think of me is rarely a concern. It’s taken a very long time to get to this mentality and it has freed me from self-doubt, self-consciousness, and so many more negative attributes I relentlessly dragged around.
But I’m not going to lie to you, this hurt. Not only because, like most kids, I hold my parents opinions higher than anything else in this world, but because a pang in my side told me she was right. I found myself scrambling to defend the reasoning behind posting pictures, “well mom if I’m trying to market myself as a lifestyle blogger then clearly I have to show people my life and it just so happens that my face is part of it”. But after reflecting and realizing there shouldn’t need to be a justification behind these actions, my hurt spiraled into frustrations and I sputtered, “well you know me, you know that’s not the case, and if people choose to judge me that’s up to them and it’s their problem not mine.”
It’s somewhat childish of an argument, but seriously. Think about it. This is just one example of how certain actions can be misconstrued and seen in completely a different light than intended. If someone walks into a room with their head held high, people speculate that their nose is in the air. If someone speaks with assurance, people roll their eyes at their haughtiness. If someone looks in the mirror with a smile, people claim they’re vain. If someone walks with a jump in their step, people don’t hesitate to try and deflate their buoyancy.
Every confident person displays it differently, but there is almost always some sort of unseen backlash against them. We preach that “confidence is key”, “do what you love” and “love yourself” but the second someone starts exemplifying these traits to the world they’re “too much”, “abrasive” or “full of themselves”. Believe me, I know there are people out there that allow confidence to transcend into a feeling of superiority and condescension. There is a tricky and rather fine line between the two so…
This is what I believe confidence entails:
Confidence is not to be confused with being vain, self-centered, conceited, etc. This is because confidence is being aware of not only your strengths, but weaknesses as well. Confidence is replacing the words “flaws” and “insecurities” with “uniqueness” and “quirks”. Confidence does not mean you are entitled or better than anyone else. Confidence lets one grow and learn from failures, rather than being crippled by them. Confidence is built upon self-reliance and self-love. Confidence is knowing your potential without depending on someone to remind you of it. Confidence is the opposite of comparisons and jealousy. Confidence is bringing the people around you up and never putting them down. Confidence is nothing to be ashamed of.
And finally, confidence is for everyone.
I know this was quite the rant, but I believe it’s an important yet misunderstood personality trait that is too often shied away from and not often enough appreciated. If you’re still reading, and want to take away one thing from all this, it is (in the least cliché way as possible) to be yourself without hesitation. Everyone is capable of instilling confidence within themselves, regardless of how it’s shown or how others react to it.