This particular post has been swirling around in my head for months. Wanting to write it, but not making the time or getting caught up in everything else. (Creating distractions on purpose, anyone?) I’m pretty good at that one. 😉 The usual thoughts coming in about writing it. WHIICCHH relate to this post, but thoughts of, ‘Ooh you’re just writing this or sharing this for attention’, ‘Who are you to write about confidence when you’re still learning the ropes’, and on and on. (I seem to have that for every post I want to write. Those dang pesky thoughts that I allow to creep in and set up camp for a day or two)
AND THEN the ones that come up RIGHT when you push publish. Gah! Those are almost even worse and 9 times out of 10 I don’t remove a post but still! ‘That was stupid what you wrote’, ‘Imagine what people will think now’, ‘hurry and take that one down’.
I’m totally starting to sweat as I write this. haha!
It is something that I thought I had. That was, until I moved away from home.
Growing up I was always involved in some kind of activity. Dance, gymnastics, tball, softball, and soccer were the younger years. Then 5th grade on up was soccer, basketball, and track. I was blessed to have a family that all enjoyed doing those things, so me being the 4th child, I started out young watching my older siblings and having my dad teach me the basics of every sport and helping develop the skillzzz.
We played a lot of basketball early in the morning in the church gym and outside on our concrete court. By the time I was in high school I had become pretty decent when it came to the three that I participated in. I lived for the sports and I was pretty good and was recognized state wide in ball, I was the PK goalie in our final three games in soccer where we won the championship, and was always up there in track going to state with relays and my individual events.
I know my friends surrounding me in hs would say that I came across as confident growing up and I would probably agree for the most part.
Not until leaving for college did I realize that my confidence came not from inside me but from my success in sports! I went from a high school of about 450-500 students TOTAL (with a graduating class of 98) to a college campus with 30,000 PLUS students. OH MA GOSH. Talk about a tiny spec in the sea.
That’s when it started to show up for me. The reality of how I REALLY felt about myself. The LACK of confidence I had. So I got involved in all the intramural sports activities that I could. Soccer, Flag Football, Water Polo (in tubes 😉 ) basketball, softball, and even gave volleyball a try. haha
Looking back I totally see how that was my feeding tube. It kept me over the neutral line instead of dipping into the negative so much.
Then marriage came and babies. Sports was minimal. I played pick up ball as often as I could and so it allowed for ALL my insecurities to start showing their face.
It was after I had my first baby that I was introduced to Foot Zone Therapy. I took the classes and was worked on multiple times releasing old belief patterns and understanding more about myself. Then I started learning about self awareness. Our thoughts we have, how we create our reality, things we can do to change, etc. etc. A few years later I was involved in an online Health and Fitness group called Iron Rhino. That’s when I really got into lifting and understanding nutrition and the power of our thoughts and that was the massive beginning of my understanding what little self-confidence I had. And that truthfully, it was barely there to begin with.
I was starting to see that everything I was doing externally was what I was reaching for and searching for as my life line. Compliments, winning events, being ‘recognized’ was my ‘confidence’. All THAT was what made me feel good about myself. As long as others were telling me I was good at something or good enough then that MUST mean I was. Because THEY said so.
So when all of THAT started falling by the wayside, my own internal voice got louder and louder. Around the same time is when I really started to delve into ‘self help’ books. I started reading about self love and what that even was. I had a friend straight up ask me how I showed love to myself or what actions did I do. I had no clue. I couldn’t even answer that. I had to google what self love was or what actions that would entail.
I looked down the list and could maybe check one or two of them off as a ‘yes’. Then I started attending seminars and invested in my first mentors. Learning about humans in general and how our thoughts and perceptions are formed from birth to about 7-11 years of age. I was taught and introduced more about energy healing and understanding myself, again, at a deeper level.
And during this time, I was receiving my own healing sessions three to four times a month if not more. I was determined to undo all the negative beliefs I had about myself. I wanted to rewrite my story. I was so tired of living inside this shell of a person that I felt wasn’t even me.
I got to a point that I had hit a deep spot and feeling. I HATED myself.
Throughout all of THAT year is when Fuel Love was born. I wanted to share everything that I had been learning to undo all those false perceptions I had about myself and to really OWN who I am. I knew couldn’t be the only one who has had a similar experience as mine.
Fast forward to during and after the divorce and being completely alone in my home and then being completely single. That entered a whole new different realm of self-confidence ‘issues’ blaring in my ears and shoved in my face. Gratefully having lots of tools and help at this point in my life.
*Side story tangent that adds to the whole 🙂 —- Growing up I kind of always had this desire to want to model. I honestly don’t know how it started or why. I remember a neighbor by our cabin had mentioned that I should model. (I was 10 at the time) I didn’t ever pursue it or really even talk about it to anyone.
Fast forward to my 3rd year in college. I was sitting in the work truck (I worked in the paint shop on campus) during our break and happened to be looking through the ads randomly and saw something about modeling. It caught my eye and then my coworkers and boss told me to call the number as it wouldn’t hurt anything. So I did! (Dang peer pressure) Went in for an interview, found out it was legit and not a scam.. bam I was signed up under an agency. I did my first promotional event and then attended another casting call a month later and then fall off the face of the earth. It TERRIFIED me. All the negative thoughts and feels SWARMED me during both things. And at the time didn’t have the tools or knowledge to overcome. So I listened and believed.
I wasn’t good enough. I wasn’t confident enough. I wasn’t ever going to book a job. I felt stupid. I felt out of my league.
So I just stopped checking in. I didn’t say anything to anyone. I just disappeared.
—-Fast forward again 8 years. (1 year ago today) A girl reached out to me through Facebook asking if I had ever done any modeling or considered ever doing it. I gave her the condensed version and she asked if I would want to come in and chat. I said sure. (Thinking maybe this was my second chance at it) It happened to be up in SLC, (Currently living in St. George) Drove up there for the meeting and upon getting to the building I realized it was the SAME agency I was under 8 years ago! I walked in and came out re-signed!
Now… you can probably imagine what kinds of thoughts run through my head adding the modeling aspect to my self confidence. It has given me the biggest kick in the butt and shown me even DEEPER parts of myself that I have disliked and wished away from me.
Ironically enough one of those was wishing I didn’t look the way I looked. A significant event in my life helped me see what others see in my but also the perception that ‘she must have it all together’ when really not… was also understood from the outside perspective.
—A couple years ago I went to one of Kirk Duncan’s seminars called, Present Yourself. I bet you can take a wild guess what that entailed. Yup… public speaking. A lo and behold OF COURSE I was the ONE female chosen out of 300-400 there to get up and give just a wee 4 minute presentation. I wanted to run and hide or faint. Luckily it was an opportunity for me to be coached by him in front of them so he stopped me 30 seconds in. PHEW! He asked why I was shaking so bad and not breathing. Then he asked me what my biggest fear was being up there. I started crying right there and I answered that it was what everyone was thinking about me. He then said something about my smile to the crowd saying that wasn’t it beautiful? and then someone shouted above everyone else, ‘she looks like a model!’
In that moment it was a really cool lesson that has kind of been the story of my life. Someone who looks a certain way MUST have it all together and confident and that life is just wonderful, right? When in reality for me…it was the opposite. Because of certain things said to me growing up.. deep down I started to despise the way I looked. It terrified me to be out in front of others trying to act like I had it all together when it came to speaking or just standing in front of a crowd. (Sports was different with being in front of others, I was in my own world and doing something I KNEW I was good at)—-
I posted a couple weeks ago on instagram about something I went up to SLC to do that got cancelled last minute. It was my test shoot for my modeling portfolio. I’ve had a hard time even telling people that I’m a model. Theres a bit of me that still cringes even writing that! I’m getting there. I’ve been working A LOT on owning who I am, and what I look like is part of that.
So what IS confidence? What is SELF-CONFIDENCE? Good ole’ google dictionary says this, ‘a feeling of trust in one’s abilities, qualities, and judgment.’
It’s TRUSTING in who you are! Your abilities are there. You were born with natural ways of doing things. Of course you can enhance and work your toosh off to get better at things. Self confidence includes self esteem which is trusting in ones worth and self respect.
WHO you are and HOW you feel about yourself is up to you. It doesn’t matter what anyone else says. Because it’s all borrowed anyways. The moments of feeling amazing when someone told me I was beautiful or that I rocked that game or hit the winning shot or whatever… It only last me maybe a few days of a high. But then what?
It was almost as if I was addicted to outsiders opinions. Then what happens when you don’t have those opinions? Or lets say, what happens if there’s the other side? One that tells you, you suck? Or that you’re stupid? Or ugly or fat?
Those for some reason, we hang onto. Those are the ones we CLING to. You know why? Because we BELIEVE those ones. We ALREADY have up in our minds that those are true. So we subconsciously put our feelers out for those. Then when they come, inside we say, ‘See I told you so’. They’re right.
Guess what?! Those are borrowed, too! They’re not even yours. You weren’t created to be ANY of those low vibration things. You are a BEING OF LIGHT. You are beautiful just by BEING YOU!
That has been my journey to self-confidence. Choosing to remove all those borrowed opinions and thoughts and rewriting my story of who I already AM. LIVING that and BEING that. In whichever way I feel called, led, and pulled to do. It’s still a work in progress and will ALWAYS be a work in progress. Overcoming more fears and false perceptions about myself. Learning to see what’s inside and not reaching outside of me for validation on how I look or how I talk or perform.
It’s been my perfect ‘mess’. Putting myself out there and pushing past comfort zone after comfort zone while sharing my journey along the way.
Part of that this last month has been FINALLY setting down a time for one of my favorite people, Matti, with Matti Parker Photo. We set up a trade some time ago and my end was a photography shoot with her. Let’s just say I used my distraction technique to the ‘t’ and kept ‘finding’ reasons to push it back. Until a couple weeks ago I gave myself a pep talk and said just schedule it dang it. No matter how scared it makes you feel.
So I did. And it happened.
I felt uncomfortable at times. I felt awkward and wanted to curl up at times. I felt liberated and beautiful at times. Then when I got the photos back I was basically taken back. It was the first time in a WHOLE shoot where I actually really LIKED how I looked in the photos. I know that’s partially cuz she’s a genius with how she captured me but also my confidence that I’ve worked on but also liking what I look like all wrapped up into one.
It was such a good experience for me and one outside my comfort. But also sooo good for me. At one point, Matti gave me the smack down and said, quit being goofy and just OWN your beauty. hahah. Love her. Funny huh, how I do confidence photography yet has pained me to be the ONE photographed 😉
And glad my test shoot got rescheduled to work on being more comfortable in my own skin and loving every part of me. Because I’ve been down the road of hating mostly all of me. And it sucks. Really bad.
Both paths take work. What I found on the path to loving who I AM was so much more fulfilling and where I’ve found complete peace, love, and connection.
For the first time in EVER. I’m really beginning to TRULY feel what it means to LOVE yourself and be confident in WHO I am.
And I’d take that over hating myself any day.
*These are a few of my faves. We did a three part shoot and I love how they all turned out. THANK YOU MATTI!!
This was right before her smack down comment;) haha.