Being confident and loving yourself is hard. You always point out your flaws and don’t look at an amazing person when looking in the mirror.
As I’ve grown up, I’ve had these thoughts too, but have now mostly made peace with the fact that I’m going to have spotty skin and a lazy eye, but am a great colleague and friend to have. It’s not easy at all, but hopefully I can help a little bit.
For my last Mental Health Awareness Week post, I thought I’d give some tips to improving your self-confidence.
1) Accept that it’s going to take time.
A journey to self-confidence is quite gradual and even I’m not there yet, but it’s a great and rewarding journey to go on. Also celebrate your accomplishments – I’ll give you an example: I interviewed a lot of people for my podcast, and I couldn’t have done that without the confidence that I could clearly ask them questions or hold a conversation.
2) Find friends that accept you, warts and all.
Having people in your life that are constantly putting you down aren’t worth your time at all. A lot of people nowadays are cutting all the toxic people out of their lives and that’s great, it leads to healthier friendships and not anxiety about why that certain friend hasn’t texted you back.
3) The great things about you are there, you just need to discover them.
I’m not the skinniest person known to man, but that’s OK. I know I’m great at writing and work to my strengths, so there will be something great that you can harbour and put all of your energy into. However, I do still have some insecurities about my looks, but I don’t care about them as much as I did – instead I pour my thoughts into my creative endeavours and job.
4) The only person who cares what you look like or about that spot on your chin is you.
I don’t wear much makeup to work, if any. I know – shocker! But there’s a reason for this. I realised that the only person who cares about my spot on my chin or blackheads is myself, my colleagues are too concentrated on their own work or lives to care about what foundation you’re working.
I admit that makeup does give confidence to some, but not wearing it can also be empowering too. I like to wear makeup for special occasions and not everyday, as I want to look different when I go out so people say “oh you look nice”, rather than looking as I usually do.
5) When on social media, find people that inspire you and follow them instead of those who you’re jealous of.
Everyone is spending so much time on social media these days, and I am no exception to that. I know a cracking feed is a must, but it shouldn’t make you jealous or anxious to open Instagram in case you get FOMO.
Your feed (much like mine) should be full of inspiring people that post about their IBS and other issues they have, instead of photoshopped, perfectly-preened people that are only going to make you jealous. That can actually be dangerous for your mental health and make you doubt yourself even more, so fill your Instagram with the queens who inspire you.
That rounds up my tips for self-confidence, I know I certainly have a way to go but the above are all things I keep in mind when my confidence is at a low. I hope you’ve enjoyed my #MentalHealthAwareness blog post series, and I’ll certainly be talking more about mental health in future.
A K Jones
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