Confidence is Key

The courage to be is the courage to accept oneself, in spite of being unacceptable. ~Paul Tillich

 

As we grow up, we change, our family changes, and our friends change. We begin to form ideas, opinions, beliefs, and lifestyles. We become individualized. We are born with agency, the ability to choose. That means we, as a nation of human beings, are all different. Gradually, we begin to feel comfortable in the individual we are. Yet, the people who surround us can make us feel unsafe in our confidence, which is not okay. We must treat everyone with mutual respect. You must not feel obligated to support one’s idea, opinion, belief, and/or lifestyle, but at the same time, you must accept who they are. For example, some issues homosexuals, bisexuals, and others can experience are that they do not have love and support from those closest to them.

The goal of our research and thoughts are to help people find peace. Having support from others that are surrounding them is paramount to building their confidence. Yes, it is true that there are many who strongly disagree with other sexual orientations besides heterosexuality, but just because you disagree with that does not mean you should hate the person; accepting the individual is apart from accepting their sexual orientation.

Key Ways to Make Others and Yourself Feel Safe in Your Confidence:

1. Surround yourself with loving people.

2. Be happy with what you think of yourself, not what others think of you.

3. If you need help then ask for it.

4. Love yourself – you’re perfect.

5. Do not ever feel pressured to talk about your personal life.

6. Always wear a smile on your face.   🙂

7. Make people see you as you, and not as a title or status.

8. Respect others the way you want to be respected.

9. Listen to the opinions of others.

10. State your own opinion in a non-offensive way.

You Are Not Alone

Coming out is never an easy task. Be it gay, bisexual, pan-sexual, transgender, gender-fluid, or anything else, it can be terrifying. It can seem like the most nerve-wracking, gut wrenching, heart stopping thing on the planet, but in reality, it really isn’t-I would know. I’ve known that I have liked girls since the eighth grade, but I did my best to repress it as long as I possibly could. Then, during my sophomore year of high school I was in a constant battle with my mind. I realized that I had feelings for one of my closest friends, a girl a year ahead of me. Shortly after that, I met the girl who became my first girlfriend.

She knew that I wasn’t ready to be out publicly and was okay with keeping things fairly private. Unfortunately, for little sophomore me, a not-so-friendly classmate of mine saw her kiss me after she walked me to class one day. When I walked into the class, he immediately brought the rooms attention towards me and, in lack of better words, pushed me out of the closet. With that push, I fell straight onto my face, and didn’t attend school for two days. Having already dealing with a severe anxiety disorder and depression, being outed in front of nearly forty people didn’t necessarily help. I had never felt more ashamed than in those two days, and it wasn’t because of the guy who told people I happened to like girls; I was ashamed at myself for even caring.

You never really know who you are until you are faced with the fact that you’ve been lying about it to not only yourself for years, but to your loved ones as well. At the time, I felt like my world was collapsing around me. Thankfully, I was so incredibly wrong about that. After returning to school, I decided it was time to start telling my close friends. It was so horrifying trying to spit out the words. Fortunately, after telling my closest friends at the school, they accepted me, and I gained a little bit of confidence. Soon, my entire group of friends, including each person, lifted this weight off of my shoulders, and I finally felt like I could breathe again.

For some unknown reason, I couldn’t get myself to tell my best friend of four years. It took me an additional four months to tell her, but finally I did. After rambling for roughly ten minutes, I finally told her. Things remained silent for a moment until she screamed out of joy and almost knocked me down by hugging me. Thankfully, she is still my best friend two years later, and we are closer than ever.

I wish I could say that all of my experiences about coming out were positive. I have lost a friend over it, which now seems incredibly immature to me, but at the time it felt so horrible. I cried for weeks, but reflecting back, I realize that a person who would leave a friendship due to your sexuality is the last type of person you want in your life. Those people, more often than not, are toxic to your mental health. I promise you, you are better off without them. It may sting for a while, but it’s for the best in the long run.

Ever since I came out to my friends, I have become a much better person. I’m in a better place emotionally. I’m happier, healthier, and have a better outlook on life. Honestly, I feel as if coming out was the best decision I have ever made. Yes, it can be scary, yes things will be difficult for a while, but it is the best thing to do. There is nothing that is more worth it than being honest about who you are.

Tips // Reminders for Coming Out

1.Be straight forward. The longer you stall and ramble the harder it is to actually get the words out. Just breathe through it and relax. Whatever happens, happens.

2.Do not psyche yourself out. You can do this.

3.Losing people is not the end of the world.

4.Acceptance is key. That also means you need to accept yourself as well.

5.There is nothing wrong with you if you are not straight. There is also nothing wrong with you if you are. Just be yourself.

One great website that is centered on improving self confidences is http://www.mindtools.com/selfconf.html.

This website explains what self confidence is and steps to improve it.  According to the website, self confidence is both self-esteem and self-efficacy. Self-esteem is the general sense that you can cope with the events that are happening in your life, and think that we have the right to be happy.  Self-efficacy is when we see ourselves achieving goals to skills that matter to you.    

Another great website that has helpful tips is

http://www.essentiallifeskills.net/buildself-confidence.html.

This website has a few tips that  can help build confidence.  An example from the website is, “good looks do not equal self confidence.”   

If you are not feeling confident with yourself, come back to this page, take breath, and know someone cares.

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