There are so many reasons why I shouldn't feel confident. I have lists I could rattle off for days.
I confess, not only do I love confessing (with the right person or audience, I always feel better afterwards) but I am also a sucker for a good personal story. Today, I’m going to give that to you.
I’m the confident woman that has had her confidence shaken in so many realms of my life. As I have dived deeper into personal work (and trust me, sexuality work is the deepest work you can do so I have been living in a kind of deep end of the pool for years) I find that the need to clear crap from my body and psyche can be done quickly and rather painlessly. Clearing through the throat and speaking up is really effective for me and occasionally I like to do this publicly to feel truly released.
Every woman has valid reasons for not being confident.
The difference between individual women is whether we choose to allow those reasons stand between us and our confidence.
This is an important lesson. Confidence is a choice. Confidence is active.
Confidence just doesn't rock up on your doorstep and ask to insert itself in your life.
Before we get to confidence we need to unburden and before I hold the space for lots of women to feel confident in the upcoming Confidence Challenge, I'm going to share with you all the reasons why I shouldn't be confident but why I am confident nonetheless.
Reason number 1: Two years ago I confessed on my blog that I am a listener who is hearing impaired. This confession made me sweat and even to this day it is still something that bothers me. Immensely. I have wished it weren’t true or real a million times over. That day I wrote something about it, one of the layers of shame shed. With that revelation, I am now at a point where I can say it in a public space, like a workshop or group. It just makes it easier when people know because then they can accommodate. I prefer smaller groups and smaller circles where I can increase the likelihood that I can hear everything that's been said. Hopefully I can hold larger spaces as technology improves but yeah it's been testing in all the ways.
Being hearing impaired hurts because I don't think there's anything sexy about saying what three times in a row when I'm struggling to understand something. There's nothing sexy about seeing people laugh in the theatre and me not getting the joke - not because I don't have a sense of humour but because I haven't actually heard the punch line. Frustratingly, my hearing impairment worsens with age along with the tinnitus that rings in my ears.
Years ago, I questioned if I should let this hold me back from my dreams of spreading the message of female sexuality and empowerment. For real. It seemed a kind of easy way to bow out of what is a very challenging path (why was I chosen?!?).
But passion was stronger than limitation.
I've cried about it, confessed to sacred circles about it but it's not something that's ever going to go away no matter how much I wish. Overcome. Adapt. Move on.
Reason number 2: The second reason I shouldn't be confident is because I'm a helper that feels things deeply. Sometimes I question my capacity to help. Sometimes I wonder if all the anger inside; all of the power that doesn't get expressed and morphs into frustration, fear and resistance means that I'm incapable of holding other women.
I was so angry two weeks ago that I threw a cob of corn across the kitchen. What I laugh about now (it is kinda funny) was an intense and necessary release at the time. When I have moments like these I wonder what other people would think of my toddler-like behaviour. Yet once a few moments has passed I think isn't it better that I throw a cob of corn across the kitchen rather than swallow all of that power and anger down and let it build and be expressed in a way that's far more sinister later down the track? And dare I say, it felt really good at the time to throw that cob of corn!
Just because we're women doesn't mean that we don't get angry. Anger isn't only relegated to men. When I release my anger, I release my shit and I'm in a better place to hold myself. When I hold myself, I am more certain of my identity, who I am and where I stand with my feeling state.
Feeling certain of your wavering emotions and being comfortable enough to express them rather than swallow them is a golden key to confidence.
So if you need to… throw the goddamn cob of corn!
Reason number 3: I have very visible scars. During my pregnancy with my second baby in 2016 I was diagnosed with a basal cell carcinoma that was removed but unfortunately left behind some of its cells. Being pregnant - there were concerns that all of my growth hormones would up the ante on these cancerous cells and have them spread potentially to my brain or my eye. The solution? Two facial surgeries when I was 32 weeks pregnant that could only be done under local anaesthetic.
It was a dark time and my confidence was at one of its lowest points. I was lethargic, it'd been a shocking pregnancy and to top it off my face is never going to look the same again. A year on, my face is healed but not completely. I'll confess that I've looked in a mirror and wondered if I'm beautiful enough to be a sexologist. It sounds petty but that’s where a lack of confidence takes you.
Now I own my scar. We all have scars in some way shape or form, it's just that mine is in a really obvious spot and I can't help but think of other women with scars on the inside and the outside showing up regardless of them. I'm at a point where I won't let a piece of skin shake my confidence in its entirety.
There’s lots more I could confess but that is enough for now. I know I have said enough when there is a sense of completion and my body feels clear... that pure addition and more won’t equal clearer.
We all have barriers to feeling confident and going on. We all have evidence that contradicts why we should keep living our life a certain way that brings us joy or allows us to express our talents.
Not being confident and owning all your parts will keep eating at you. Like I said, it will not go looking for you – you need to go looking for it so that you can claim it for yourself.
If you are grappling with confidence and want it badly, lucky for you I have a FREE 5 day Confidence Challenge starting on Monday July 10th. You will get daily emails filled with juicy confidence nuggets of wisdom and you can join a private pop-up Facebook group where I will host daily Facebook Live’s!! That means that you’ll have questions and I will be there to answer them. Over 5 days we will cover:
+Understanding and refining the blocks to feeling confident about sex
+Discovering your big capacity to speak up
+Reducing the temptation to keep people pleasing
+Swapping anxiety for feeling certain and clear
+Where your sexuality is hiding and how you can help it to come out
Say yes today by signing up at www.laurenwhite.com.au/confidence-challenge