Confidence. Self-worth. Who doesn’t want those things? Yet, they can be oh so elusive. I’m in the middle of creating all kinds of new material to help others gain confidence, because I know what it feels like to not like myself, or to like myself and still not feel totally confident.
So here’s a deep, dark, confidence secret. SHHHHH. Close the door. Ready?
It’s okay to not feel 100% awesome about yourself, all the time. It’s okay to be where you are, in this moment, feeling whatever you’re feeling. Part of being confident and having self-worth is knowing that you don’t have to do anything perfectly – including confidence. Even though my overall confidence has improved greatly, I still have days when I don’t feel confident.
Yet, my experience now is so different from what it used to be. Now, I am okay with not being okay . I am even okay with not really being okay with being okay. Just try to figure that one out! What I’m trying to say is – I’m in a new place of awareness about myself. I don’t have to be on top of the world to feel good about myself. I’m not perfectly achieving anything or living a perfectly raining-rose-petals daily life, and I have in fact made approximately seven-hundred faux pas today alone. Still, even in my crappiest self esteem moments, I feel an underlying sense of peace with who I am.
I used to have the misperception that other people had it all figured out, or were perfect, or never felt bad about themselves, ever. I thought I was less than if I didn’t do things perfectly or “right,” or feel great about myself all the time. I wanted to be one of those people who had it all figured out and had risen above, somehow. I didn’t realize that the way to true confidence and self-worth traverses through the messy, human, imperfections in all of us. Having it all figured out is a myth. I didn’t know that by letting myself being imperfect and human, I’d float up to the surface and find joy.
This is why I love mind-body healing so much. I started out trying to find pain relief from vulvoynia, interstitial cystitis, and irritable bowel syndrome, and I ended up discovering gold. I discovered how to feel better about myself, how to truly ease off the pressure I put on myself, and how to love even my most human, messed-up, messy, ugly, blechy moments. Which means I can relax into my very humanness, my very imperfection, and land into a place of peace, even when I’m not doing all of this relaxing into myself perfectly. That may sound like a paradox, but it’s the best I can do to explain this at the moment.
How did this happen? Well, it was a natural expansion of using the mind-body healing process for pain relief. The mind-body healing process essentially reconnects you to your soul. This means you can hear your soul wisdom. You can finally see yourself from the vantage point of your soul. Over time, spending more and more moments seeing from that vantage point creates a totally new perspective. The more time you consciously spend there, the more you naturally and effortlessly end up there. This means your mind spends more time telling you what your soul is saying and less time telling you tall tales. Again – it’s not about perfection. We’re just looking to tip the scales here, so that you eventually spend more time seeing how incredible, amazing, talented, and special you are and less time criticizing yourself.
If you’re having a crappy self esteem day (or month…or year…) you will be more likely to believe your mind when it tells you how awful your butt looks or how you are an idiot for messing up that presentation, etc. You will be more likely to look at others and think they have it all figured out and pulled together. (My colleague and friend Jessica Steward calls this compare and despair. How awesome is that!) Yet, even if your mind is doing that, you can step back and observe it, notice it, and know, even though you kind of believe your mind right now, that your soul sees you differently.
Your soul sees you through the eyes of love, always. It loves you unconditionally. It knows you are always okay, so it never worries about you. It knows that you are perfectly lovely, mistakes and all, cellulite and all, bad hair days and all. It sees your humanness with a mix of gentle laughter and a loving, nurturing embrace. It wants to hold you close and stroke your hair, let you cry it out, and then celebrate with you as joy returns. Your soul is like the most mothering, nurturing, loving being you can possibly imagine.
Confidence doesn’t happen when you finally get it all right, reach perfection, do it as good as so-and-so did, or attain your lofty, weighty goals. Confidence happens when you hear your soul. It happens when you and your soul are on the same page, and you let your soul sing. It happens when you spend time practicing linking up with your soul, which means connecting to your body, feeling your emotions, and consciously opening up to your soul wisdom. Not sure how to put that all together? Oh, don’t you worry! It’s coming! Stay tuned. I’m writing away like mad these days.
Here’s the first one: We are all equals. We are all geniuses. We are all amazing. We are all special. We are all unique, and have unique things to offer, in our own unique ways. No one is more incredible than someone else. We’re just all on our own individual incredible path, showing up as these fascinatingly individual people. We are all human. We are none of us superwoman, and yet we are all superwoman, at the same time. We are humanly divine and divinely human.
Here’s the second one: There’s nothing wrong with you, no matter what you think you need to change about yourself to be “better.” That’s the biggest tall tale of all. You are already okay – in fact, much more than okay – exactly as you are. Even if you committed the faux pas I committed today, even if you are still overweight, even if you spent time crying under a blanket and hiding from the world yesterday (oh yes, this still happens, even when you’ve learned to love yourself!), even if you aren’t where you think you should be with whatever is on your mind, you are loved. You are a part of this great big playground of human beings, and you get to be here, to play, even on your worst days. You are part of the whole, even as you strike out on your own to create your own, individual work in the world.
That’s how you know your own self-worth. You listen to this wise soul of yours, and you follow its guidance. What you end up with may look totally different than other people, and that’s okay. It’s about learning to trust your own unique spin on life. There is no wrong way. You can’t really avoid the wrong way or find the right way. Instead, you have to look for your individual way, as told to you by your soul. Because I’m a musician, I like to call that your soul song. Sing it, baby!