Funny old thing, confidence. Some people have it in sacks, others have none at all. I tend towards the latter with the occasional boost up. I have a terrible sense of self-image and an almost annoying paranoia about myself full stop.
I whinged about some of the psychology behind this in a post a while back (https://pyroriffic.wordpress.com/2009/11/15/moaning-and-whinging-maybe/ if anybody’s interested). I still have days when I look in the mirror and just want to cry, or if anybody takes a photograph of me – that’s another thing almost guaranteed to set me off. Today’s been one of those days. You know that something isn’t quite right when you actively avoid looking in the mirror in the bathroom at work in case it reduces you to tears.
Irrational, maybe, but there you are. I look in the mirror and I don’t see the person I think I am. Once in a while, every so often, I catch a glimpse of her. It’s fleeting, though and by the time I’ve looked away and looked back, she’s gone again. I wonder, sometimes, if that’s the Sarah everyone else sees.
I’ve been a lot better of late. When I was down at my dad’s in April, I got an email from a friend which gave me a good kick in the arse. He said:
Your task, whether you choose to accept it or not, is to make sure your next 10 messages to me aren’t even remotely showing any lack of confidence, or hesitance, or worrying about stuff.”
Wow. He got me right straight off.
I’ve actually made a concerted effort since then not to do it. It’s not always easy, but I’m trying. I did a re-read edit of two short stories tonight for example and nodded in satisfaction by the time I’d finished. I think things are slowly improving in terms of my confidence. Time will definitely tell on that one.
Appearance wise? I don’t think I’ll ever be happy. But I’m trying (again) to do something about it.
Watch this space. And stuff.