Be Surprised by Confidence, and Glow Inside and Out

Posted by Brenda Smit-James on

Do you, like me, wish you had more confidence, more energy, and a greater sense of who you are?

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I used to look outside of myself for the answers to my lack of confidence, my insecurity, and my sense of not feeling at home in my skin. I used to wonder who I was and how I fitted into this world. I've since come to understand that the answer isn't out there, it's actually right here, in my own person.

Confidence, energy for life, and a stronger identity of self are some of the things we discuss here on my blog, the Glow Guide. I share some simple steps and stories to help us look a lot closer to home to understand why we may not feel as confident and comfortable in our skin as we would like to. We also look at ways we can take care of our skin so that we can truly shine and feel lovely.

That's really what the Glow Guide is about!

In light of that, I have a question for you. When last did you surprise yourself? Or, when was the first time you remember being surprised about something you learned about yourself?

This is my story.

I grew up rather shy, timid, and introverted. I always saw myself as the wallflower and I even had the nickname Mousy when I was at school. So that says enough. Later, I became a schoolteacher teaching English to high school students.

And here’s where I surprised myself!

When I got into my classroom and I got over my nerves; the students settled down, I settled down, and we started to develop a relationship. To my big surprise I discovered that the front of my classroom became my stage. In fact, I was a bit of a drama queen – and that totally surprised me!

I found that I liked being in front of my classroom, entertaining the students and engaging with them. Now don't get me wrong, teaching is not an easy profession and I take my hat off to all schoolteachers. There were certainly drawbacks about teaching, and difficulties that I encountered. But what surprised me was how much I enjoyed, and could command, being in front of the classroom, teaching the students, trying to make English engaging, so that what they learnt about phrases and clauses, literature and poetry, would actually stick and stay.

I had always thought I was timid and shy, that I didn't want to be upfront, and that I preferred to be in the background. To be honest, I still do in many ways. But this experience revealed something that was quite different from what I'd believed about myself up until that time.

Do you have a similar surprising experience?

Stop and think for a moment. Is there a time or an experience that, surprisingly, tells a different story from the one you have formulated and believed as to who you are? If so, what is this different story and what is it saying about you?

Recently, I chose to take my blog virtual with the Glow Guide YouTube channel. I would love to say that it was a step of utter confidence for me to do this. However, it was more like a mustering of my courage and a stand-off with my inner doubts and fears, the ones that wanted to keep me safe and out of the limelight. I had to grapple through it to find the confidence to step out again, like I did in my classroom. 

Confident woman with folded arms

If nothing else, I realise that the gift of my Glow Guide YouTube channel is actually to me, as it grows my confidence and helps me to develop a stronger sense of self.

Are you in a similar position? Are you shrinking back from a challenge? Do you like to keep yourself in the shadows and yet, at the same time, wonder why you are struggling with your self-confidence? Do you struggle to speak up for yourself? Or are you on the other spectrum? Perhaps, you present as super confident but, inside, you feel like a fraud. Whenever there is a disconnect between how we present ourselves and who we really are or want to be, our confidence is either diminished or it becomes bravado.

Go back to that experience, the one that differs from the one you have always told yourself. Sit quietly with it and ask, what is it telling you about yourself? What can you do to step into that experience again and operate more from that place, thereby narrowing the gap between who you have always believed yourself to be and what that experience has shown you can be?

If you have something to share, I would love you to hear about it! Please leave a message on this post.

This much I know. We can use all the anti-aging skin care products available, and the best moisturisers and night creams we like, but they will never replicate that inner glow we exude when we feel at one with ourselves. A beautiful woman is any woman who is at home in her skin. Is that you? Or are you, like me, in the process of becoming a more beautiful you?

Click on this link for the video version of this blog post on my YouTube channel, The Glow Guide.


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