Being Confident Doesn’t Make You Conceited

Teresa Barker

Hey there, so today I wanted to dive into a topic that’s a little personal and talk about a life lesson: being confident, and owning it. This one took me years to learn, so I thought it would be worth sharing. So, let’s just dive right on in.

Starting From the Beginning

When I was a kid, I used to be really confident. Like, borderline cocky. I was a tomboy, and in games like soccer and other athletic activities, I could give the boys a run for their money. I didn’t care about how I looked, I cared about having fun and beating the boys. But then I hit middle school, and I wasn’t so good at being confident anymore. It was no longer a concern about if I could outrun the boys, but wondering what they thought of me. And then girl drama began, which I totally believe starts over boys, but everything you do suddenly matters. Everyone wants to fit in. So, what did I do? I did what I could to fit in. For example, I wore what everyone was wearing, which meant only shopping at Hollister and Abercrombie & Fitch. When you’re young, what people think about you feels like the most important thing in the world. Spoiler alert: it’s not.

High School

I let what I thought other people would think of me rule my life and fashion choices until about 11th grade. Which is much longer than I would have wished, but it probably has something to do with the fact that I transferred to a new school in 6th grade and barely knew anybody. That definitely made me even more shy. Regardless, I had gotten past the 1st half of the-life-lessons-you-need-to-learn-to-be-confident, which is:

What other people think about me is so unimportant and shouldn’t dictate the way I live my life

So, now that I wasn’t living my life based on the opinions of others, I was living it based off of my opinions of myself. I had to stand in my own truth. But when I had just spent the last few years of my life making choices as a follower, how was I supposed to know how to be the leader of my own life? At 16?? Yeah, okay. Impossible.

Well… Good News: I Found My Voice

By senior year, I was really owning my own sh*t. That year I was:

  • vice president of the senior class
  • VP of another honor society
  • wore clothes I loved and felt GOOD in and wore them because I liked them
  • had friends that I liked and that liked me
  • had the most perfect boyfriend who treated me the way I hope every girl is treated (like a queen), and was just 100% myself

In fact, I was so myself that I was confident standing my ground on anything from class discussions to advice for friends, to talking things out with any fights with my bf and communicating confidently with my parents – even if we disagreed, we’d talk it out.

I will admit that being so confident and standing in my truth hast gotten me in trouble sometimes.

By “trouble” I mean there was this one boy who could not stand me and arguably hated me. He didn’t like that 1. a girl could be so opinionated and confident and 2. a girl that confident and opinionated disagreed with him! Honestly I get it, not all guys can handle a confident girl, which is why you don’t worry about them and keep doing you. But this boy is one of the reasons that I used to think being an outspoken young lady and speaking with my head held high made me a b!tch.

Speaking Honestly & Confidently Doesn’t Make You a B!tch

Ground-breaking stuff, right? Everything we take in tells us we should shrink ourselves. Magazines and ads literally tell us we need to lose weight and be smaller. Teenage boys can be dumb and call you a b!tch just for being a strong woman. Girls can be judgmental and harsh, and when you’re an young that can be enough to kill your confidence. Basically, I felt that there were so many things around me as a young, developing girl that were telling me that I shouldn’t love myself, or something is wrong with me. So much so, actually, that when I started to feel confident and embrace myself it felt… wrong. But, with time, I’ve grown comfortable with feeling confident, with speaking my mind, and with owning who I am to myself & others. And nothing is wrong with that.

As the Great Drake Once Said, “You Gottta be Nice for What?”

Like, isn’t that crazy? Why did it take me until almost 20 to be able to be cool with being like “hi I respect and love myself and am going to act in a way that reflects that and expect you to also treat me with respect” Like whY WAS THAT SO HARD.

Oh, and not just words. But looks. which brings me to my next golden point…

Being Confident in How You Look Doesn’t Make You Conceited

People see a girl wearing a cute outfit and walking with her head held high and immediately assume she’s conceited AND a b!tch. What  a combo. Did they ever think that maybe she was just feeling herself in that outfit? Maybe she just has good posture? Maybe she has worked on her self-image and self-esteem for years and after, again, YEARS, finally loves herself and has found peace with her body and loves her body and now she’s just enjoying life as a woman who is fueled by self love?

What a concept.

I wear some things now that a few years ago, I didn’t have the confidence to pull off. Not saying my fashion choices are all that wild, just saying that they’re choices made because I love my body and not because I hate it. I’m wearing cute outfits for myself and wear what I like, even if my bf doesn’t like it I’m like “well I do,” and he respects that. Or, let’s say someone compliments me, I say thank you with a big smile. I don’t shy away or say some dumb stuff like “what? oh this shirt is like a bajillion years old and has a stain here look….”. You know what I mean? In other words, I walk out of my house feeling good about myself, for myself. And if someone is negative towards me, that’s cool, I’m at peace with myself. If someone compliments me, I happily take the compliment, because I’m confident in myself. I hope that makes sense.

It Takes Time, But Being Confident Will Come

It took me standing up to dumb boys about class discussions, to ex’s about respecting me the way I know I deserved, to confronting mean girls, to just… growing up, for me to become this confident. I mean, I used to be so insecure in myself but now I have my own blog where I do and say whatever I want for the world to see hahaha. Trust me, the best things take time. Oh, and one ore thing: if a boy can’t handle a confident gal like yourself, I say frick that, move on, and get yourself a man that respects and cherishes you.

Much love to my confident ladies.

❤, Teresa

 

Hey there, so today I wanted to dive into a topic that's a little personal and talk about a life lesson: being confident, and owning it. This one took me years to learn, so I thought it would be worth sharing. So, let's just dive right on in. Starting from the beginning...Hey there, so today I wanted to dive into a topic that's a little personal and talk about a life lesson: being confident, and owning it. This one took me years to learn, so I thought it would be worth sharing. So, let's just dive right on in. Starting from the beginning...Hey there, so today I wanted to dive into a topic that's a little personal and talk about a life lesson: being confident, and owning it. This one took me years to learn, so I thought it would be worth sharing. So, let's just dive right on in. Starting from the beginning...

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