If you'd have known me as a kid, you'd probably be shocked if you met me now. Not just because I was desperate to be an archaeologist (I really liked Time Team...). Needless to say, that didn't go to plan. You'd be stunned because I was an insanely timid child. But look at me now posting my photos all over the bloody internet?!
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I have no other way of describing myself as a young'un other than timid. I'm sure my mum would chirp in with a slightly nicer mum-like synonym, i.e. 'sweet', if she could (hi mum). One example to show the extent my shyness - I used to feel physically sick at the thought of saying 'yes Miss' in response to the register at school. I can genuinely remember the awful feeling in my stomach in my year five classroom. It's genuinely making me feel on edge now just talking about it...
And now, I've got a career, a blog, a degree, opinions that I voice (I know several people who will totally second that 😂). All of which, arguably, take (lady?) balls. So how did I get here?
Well, I'm going to credit my dad with helping me gain a lot of my confidence. My dad and I would have so many same-y conversations, with me utterly petrified at the thought of doing something. Filled with self doubt, wracked with nerves. And he'd give me the very same piece of advice every time. I remember in so many of these scenarios, he'd simply say: 'just pretend to be confident'.
It might sound wrong - like you're pretending to be someone you're not. But I'm living proof that faking confidence can really work. To be honest, it's something I didn't really get until I was about 16 or so. I didn't think I could do it. My dad made it sound so simple. But now, I probably do it every single day in some way.
It is actually pretty simple though. I fake confidence when I'm prepping for something I'm crapping myself about, or if I'm thrown into a situation. I guess it's kind of CBT-ish really. Also, as a bit of a disclaimer, there's also nothing wrong with being shy, but I know how hard it can make your life!
I'm not saying this is a cure-all, I'm not 100% confident. It probably won't surprise you, given all this, I was diagnosed with anxiety a few years back. I can see now how it showed itself in my childhood in retrospect. But pretending to be confident where I need to has helped me prove to myself that I can be confident. And it's all shown me that I do actually already have confidence. I just need to be proactive in using it more (I have paper bags to hand if anyone is about ready to throw up).
Just a brain spew on a Sunday, but given I mentioned confidence in my last post about saying no more often, I thought I'd follow up with this today! Have any of you guys struggled with your confidence too?
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