I’ve learned a lot in the last months about being fully me, and shrugging off things that don’t reflect that. There are so many opportunities in life to take part in activities, I’m choosing only the best ones for me these days. I’m happier, more settled, and more peaceful. Here’s a recent example of a situation I got myself in to that really made me miserable. You can gain self-confidence by being truly yourself. It means making some hard decisions about how you spend your time though.
The girls’ trip
“Ok girls, let’s get on our pjs and then we’ll all meet back here and color!!” The emcee said. I was with a group of women at a retreat and as soon as she said that I cringed. I’d like to say I cringed inwardly, but I’m pretty sure I cringed outwardly too. My daughter was with me that weekend and she looked at me with the same look I gave her. It was the look of, ‘Do we have to?’ No, we didn’t, and we did go get on our pjs, and hung out in our hotel room, eating candy and watching a movie together.
It ended up being a perfect night for just the two of us. Both of us couldn’t wait to get home the following day, and we realized that it was not a good fit for us. I’m glad my daughter is seeing that example modeled in me, and taking hold of it earlier in her life than I did.
Don’t invite me to girls’ night. You’ll be happier, and I’ll be happier
Girls Night Out or Girls Night In is just not my thing. I don’t think I’ll go to a retreat ever again in my life. Unless I’m hanging with my family or close friends and having game night, cooking, watching movies or something like that, I am just not good with Girls Night life. My circle of friends is small, by choice.
Deep connection with people I care about is really important to me, and I’ve never been able to manage being friends with a lot of people, because I can’t connect as deeply with everyone. I don’t know how to manage surface relationships, and it gets too complicated for me when I’m trying to navigate so many relationships.
I felt bad about this part of me for a really long time, and I didn’t think I was normal. It caused me to wonder why I didn’t like things like that, or why it stressed me out. It seemed like everyone else could have fun in group settings, so why couldn’t I? I tried for way to long to fit in to things like that, and where I felt like I had a flawed character because these types of events or gatherings didn’t speak to my soul.
Choosing only the best things for my life has been key
As life experience and maturity have caught up with me, I realize that I want to live a life that is satisfying to my soul – everyday. There are sacrifices I make along the way, and I do things I don’t want to do, because that’s the path I’ve chosen. Laundry or cleaning is a great example of that, but not when it comes how to spend my leisure time. I’ve chosen to say no to things that don’t work. That’s difficult. I don’t like to let people down or disappoint them.
I’m leaning in to who I am, and you can too, and gain self confidence.
I think the theme of 2021 for me is Leaning In. I’ve caught myself saying that phrase several times this year, and it seems to be where I’m headed. My priority is to lean in to my life fully. It’s important for me to explore who I am creatively and to focus on the relationships and responsibilities I currently have. I need that in my life and I don’t have time to pursue things that I don’t want to do or to try to fit in to a box of some sort. I’m leaning in to who I am, and not leaning in to fitting in to things that just don’t speak to me.
I wish I would have spent so much less time in the last 46 years questioning myself. Then I have questioned my questioning. It’s a viscous cycle that has wasted a lot of my time. I have learned so much over the years, and at this point, I truly believe that I’m made perfectly and completely.
I see how people are different and how we all bring different things to the table. Others need to show me a different way and I can respect and appreciate differences, without thinking I somehow need to stuff myself in to someone else’s box. It feels so much better that way. It’s scary, but it’s better. Living in my skin, owning myself, and shrugging off things that don’t fit for me. It’s made me happier, more peaceful, and a lot more fun. I want to stay there.
You can stop questioning yourself too. Just be who you are. Others won’t always understand it, or like it, but that’s not for you to worry about. You can’t be who you’re not. You’ll be more at peace, and that is attractive to the healthiest kinds of people anyway.