Our insecurities are interesting manifestations of our perceived selves. They sit on our backs like little trolls, preventing us from becoming the best, fullest versions of ourselves.
For the most part we run around thinking that we’re the only ones with these ‘weird’ insecurities and that everyone else is just whole and perfect. So we try and appear as ‘normal’ as possible so we won’t be ‘found out’ by the normal world.
I hate to break it to you, but you’re not that special - some of those deep-seated insecurities that you think only you have are also shared by literally everyone in the world. And yet, there are some people in the world who seem to go around as confident as a flower under the sun! How do these people get so confident? Well, here are some ways:
No one is looking… really!
A big thing I notice about most people (myself included) is that we think that everyone is always up in our business. However for the most part, everyone is too wrapped up in their own problems to notice what we’re bringing to the table.
I especially notice this when we’re trying out new things. For some reason we believe that while trying something for the first time, we must be the bestest and most perfectest at it (yeah, those are words I made up). On a logical level, this doesn’t even make sense and yet I see it over and over again.
Kids don’t seem to have this problem - if we did we’d never learn anything. Imagine learning to walk and giving up after we can’t do it perfectly the first time? It’s a crazy thought, right?
Just keep in mind that for the most part, the people who are noticing you all live in your head, and in the instance that someone real does notice you, you won’t make enough of a dent for them to remember that one time that you felt silly. It’s just like wearing a costume, suddenly you feel braver because you’re unrecognisable. But try that without a costume next time!
Sharing is caring
Like I mentioned in the introduction of this article, we often think that we’re the only ones with the insecurities and that everyone is fine. This is so far removed from the truth that it’s an outright lie! Sometimes just knowing others also share our pain allows us to feel included and calmer.
When we share with others what’s really going on, it often bring us closer together because we are put in a vulnerable space thus allowing others to be vulnerable as well. And while shame and fear sit in this space, so does compassion, love, acceptance and belonging, which should be a confidence booster for anyone!
Being vulnerable can go either way
Now while I’m all for opening up, I would however practice a little bit of caution and discretion with it. Because vulnerability is home to some big feelings, for some of us who haven’t processed our feelings well enough, opening up to others may only bring our own fear and shame to the surface.
This means that instead of bringing you two closer and you having someone there to cheer you on, it might just drive you apart. Before embarking on a sharing session, check and see if that person is ‘worthy’ of your vulnerability. Yes I said ‘worthy’. Some people are just not up to the task.
Perhaps you could ask first, “Hey I would like to share something quite personal and vulnerable with you. How does that feel to you?” From their reaction you can decide whether to proceed or not. You can usually tell in your gut whether to continue or not. However sometimes our need to want to be understood supersedes our gut feeling that this person will not be a good receiver. This is where we usually get hurt.
This doesn’t mean never share ever, but just pick the people you bring close to you wisely. Having supportive people who are there for you can do wonders for one’s self esteem.
Avoid the overshare
Oversharers are not pleasant to be around because they open up not to connect, but for other reasons. Sometimes the reason is attention, sometimes it’s competition, whatever it is, once they unload on you instead of feeling a connection, you feel like you need to get away.
So check-in with yourself before sharing. Where is this need for sharing coming from? What do you want out of this situation? What will it solve? And proceed with empathy and compassion. Just put yourself in someone else’s shoes, would you like to hear what you have to say?
How does being vulnerable make you more confident?
Well it doesn’t directly, but being open and compassionate allows others to do and feel the same around you. It allows you to see your flaws and be compassionate and accept yourself. And that in itself brings about confidence and banishes your insecurities. I hope that these simple tips will allow you to see beyond your insecurities and into a more wholesome, confident life!