As you know, I have been focusing on self-improvement over the last seven or eight months.
My first mission was to get my self-confidence in order. I have definitely made improvement, but it is an ongoing battle to stay on track and I think that is only natural. We all have days where we just can’t shake the funk, but fortunately I now have the coping mechanisms to snap myself out of my self-induced negativity rather quickly.
The next feat was conquering my fear! I realized after some much-needed reflection that I was letting fear run my life. I am a very shy person by nature and get very anxious in social situations where I don’t know anyone. I know now that this anxiety is rooted in the fear of judgement from others. Which goes right along with not having the confidence I needed to be comfortable in my own skin.
Having awareness of both of these issues was the first step in working through them. I can now honestly say that I have learned to love myself unconditionally. However, both fear and insecurity still rear their ugly head from time to time, but at least I am now armed with the tools to move past them.
The next feeling I have decided to take head on is jealousy. I don’t mean jealously in the sense of not trusting others, such as the actions of being a jealous girlfriend. I have never had an issue with that. When I am with someone, I trust them completely otherwise I would not be with them. I never look at their phone or question where they have been. I believe they are entitled to their privacy just as much as I am!
The jealousy I am referring to is seeing the actions of others and feeling jealous of their confidence and/or ambition. For example, I wish I was the type of person who could walk up to a complete stranger and strike up a conversation, but that is just not me.
Although, once you get to know me, you would never believe I am shy, but it takes a bit for me to let you in. Ask any of my close friends and they will tell you that once I start talking, I may never shut up! When I was younger some of my friends called me Babbles! I even received a mock speeding ticket from a friend of mine for ‘speaking too fast for comprehension’! LOL
I wish I could be like that with everyone 🙂
What made me think of this issue with jealousy today was that we had a company cook-out and a co-worker of mine stopped by my cube to ask if I was going. I told her that I planned to, but that I was waiting for the crowd to clear out…”I’m kind of shy” I told her.
She laughed and said, “Oh don’t be silly, come on!” And so I did.
I watched as she easily integrated herself with our co-workers (co-workers she has worked with for less time than I) without blinking an eye. “She is fearless” I thought to myself. And I found myself envious of her ability to be comfortable in the crowd. Not maliciously envious, but with more admiration than anything. “You’re a little jealous of her” I thought to myself, “that’s something you need to work on”.
It seems obvious now that the challenges I mentioned above go hand in hand with feelings of jealousy. Is Jealousy not rooted in insecurity and fear? I think so. And it is not necessarily a bad thing. At least the type of jealousy I am talking about; out of admiration. This type of jealousy can be inspiring.
I saw in someone else something I am striving for and it has motivated me to continue working on myself. It was a nice reminder that I am not out of the woods yet on my journey of self-improvement, but are we ever really done improving ourselves? I doubt it.
I find myself so thankful for the experience of today. That sweet confident girl has unknowingly relight my fiery determination to conquer my fears.
It is so beautiful to be inspired by the unexpected 🙂