The Confidence I Always Wanted

Honestly, I’ve always been one of those people that just copies whatever the people around me. If it makes them happy there’s probably a reason, right?

Recently, I told one of my friends that I admired her confidence. She walked into every building like she was the founder, CEO, and head of every department there. I knew that confidence came from within you. That it wasn’t something you could just buy from amazon. (Although I’ll admit I thought about attempting to find it on that damn site.) I told my friend that I just copied a few of the techniques for faking confidence. I held my head high, walked fast, and didn’t speak to people if I didn’t want to. Seemed simple enough.

Of course, it felt incredibly strange at first. I felt like everyone was staring at me and judging me. In the beginning it did the opposite of making me confident. But then the strangest thing began to happen. I found that when I acted like my friend who had all this confidence, I began to like the kind of attention I was getting from those once judging eyes were ones that I could impress. I wanted to impress them, even if I didn’t know what the hell I was doing. They would never know it. On the outside, I was going to be “frighteningly confident” even if I didn’t always feel that way on the inside.

One way I wanted to do that was with the clothes I was going to wear. Now I’ve gone to a catholic school for my whole life so my new confidence wasn’t exactly allowed to be shown during school hours. But I’m a stage hand and that meant I could wear stage blacks for show days. I’d get so excited to show everyone there was more to me than just maroon polos and sperry’s. Those black outfits were when I felt absolutely incredible about myself and transformed into my alter ego who had it all together. It was exhilarating. While the cast put on their costumes and pretended to be someone else onstage, I was doing the same thing behind the scenes. I’d swipe on red lipstick and a black dress and suddenly I was a completely different person. And I loved it. Sure, relying on others to tell you that you look good isn’t the healthiest thing. But those compliments were what inspired me to try new looks and to build my confidence from the inside out instead of the other way around like I had previously thought.

The most confident I’ve ever felt was when I performed at a coffee house at school this past spring. One of the best singers in our company had asked me to perform a duet from one of my favorite musicals with him and I was flattered. So I practiced my heart out and even got a new dress to wear. Now like I said before, I’m a stage hand through and through. I’ve never doubted it for a second that it was where I belonged. But I grew up singing in the choir at church and singing can be pretty cool too.

Anyway, I was going to be doing things both behind the soundboard and onstage. My dress gave me this incredible sense of confidence even though it probably wasn’t the most practical thing to wear. But that didn’t matter. But during the coffee house we would take intermissions and during one of them, a group of kids taking a tour of the school walked in to see some performances. Of course our school had hosted an open house during our coffee house. One of the groups was led by my ex boyfriend who I had slowly becoming friends with lately. He walked in with his group and his eyes practically popped out of his head when he saw me. He’s definitely a player, but sometimes girl brains decide to ignore that fact. My brain did at least. He kept complimenting me and staring at me. It didn’t dawn on me for a second what was happening. I had made a boy speechless. But in the moment it was happening I thought he couldn’t think of anything to talk about! He told me later what was going through his mind when he saw me. He also revealed how he had developed feelings for me again, and that he had plans to break up with his current girlfriend for me. And my girl brain believed it. I don’t want to get into detail about the rest of the story because that isn’t the point of this entry.

The point is this: sometimes relying on other’s opinions to make you feel better isn’t the worst thing. We all want to be the incredibly confident girl that doesn’t need anyone. But let’s face it: none of actually knows what the hell we’re doing.

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