Ashley

Confidence plays such a big part in what we do, how we hold ourselves and how we are in everyday situations. There were many times where I would put on a front, paint on a smile just simply to fit in. The problem with that is, when its taking effort, it’s very difficult to keep up. I was under the illusion that I was surrounding myself with people that liked me for me, when in fact, they liked me for the version of myself I was portraying. Why was I doing this? For myself? To some extent yes, because I wanted to be accepted. Mainly though I was doing it to please those around me, that’s who they wanted me to be, so I went along with it and let me tell you…..it’s bloody hard work keeping it up. We are most comfortable in life when we are happy in our own skin and when we are in an environment where we feel warm, surrounded by people we love and trust. At that point I didn’t tick any of those boxes. I look back now and think ‘What were you doing?!?’ 

One evening I was with one of that group, just the two of us and we got chatting and had a real laugh and that ‘virtual make-up’ started cracking away from me, revealing the true person. That’s the realization, my eureka moment. Onwards, I made a conscious effort to go out and be myself. None of that ‘virtual make-up’ crap, just being me and one by one friends dropped off (This is no big deal). The friends or relationships where you are having to change for them, to fit in, are not worth your time. You are so much better than that! After a short while, I was then just surrounded by an awesome group of individuals who liked me for who I really am. No acting, not even trying and accepting. 

That confidence I built myself, in that group of people inspired me and is the backbone of who I am today. Look, not everybody is perfect, because there isn't such a thing. Everybody is perfect in their own unique way (Unless you’re an identical twin) there is no set definition of the word when it comes to humanity. 

As a society, we are fascinated by the glamorous men and women adorning the front covers of glossy magazines, it's what the media portray as 'Perfect' when in fact, these cover stars have on average 6 hours of photo shopping done on an image before its deemed worthy enough for the next edition. It’s human nature, its completely normal to feel that way sometimes. Think of your most idolized celebrity? Got it? I can 100% Guarantee you that they lack confidence in at least one aspect, 100%. 

I found solace and built confidence in accepting who I am, and surrounding myself with individuals who looked at me the same way that I looked at myself, for who I am. If you lose a few friends on your journey to building confidence, to becoming yourself and feeling comfortable then so be it. Remember, a lion doesn’t lose sleep over the opinion of sheep. 


Be that lion.
 

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