So long, Insecurity
Originally published on 1-15-13
There was no incident that catapulted me into the well of insecurity. I was loved and encouraged as a child and am still, but ever since I can remember, I have felt the never ending need for more and more and more validation.
Insecurity for me has been like living with a dull numbing pain. It’s always there waiting to be triggered. And since I’ve lived with insecurity from my earliest school memory I've tweaked my persona and convinced people the pain was nonexistent. I’m so loud and commanding and such a jokester that no one has ever bothered to ask me if there was anything I needed. But since there were no obvious signs, I didn’t ever shave my head a la Britney Spears or get in trouble with the law like Lindsey Lohan or cut myself like Demi Lovato, I can’t blame them.
Maybe it was obvious to those closest to me, but maybe it wasn’t. Now, I often ask my Dad to tell me that I did a good job and tell me that he’s proud of me when he sees fit or the situation calls for it because I didn’t get those exact words too much growing up. A few years ago I finally asked him why he didn’t communicate those things to me during the early years and he responded with “I thought you already knew” and “everyone else was telling you so I assumed…” So for sure I had my parents fooled. I gave off the idea that I was totally confident. My outside screamed, “I am Catia, hear me roar!” My insides always softly questioned, “Am I good enough, and am I more than good enough?”
I had everyone fooled, until I started writing a few years ago and it all came seeping out. I became what a political pundit would deem relatable.
After reading a few blog posts, a great family friend and mother figure knew I needed guidance and last April she mailed me the book “So long, Insecurity.” Since it was before my coming to with God and since the author quoted scripture and often referred to biblical verses I had a hard time with it and put it down. I figured I’d eventually pick it back up, but I wasn’t sure when.
One day I wanted to pick it back up but then I started dating this wonderful man, who I now know I’ll grow old with and I thought, no way I can’t fly my freak flag this early! So I tucked it away. Then, when I knew my relationship was a place where I could present myself as raw and vulnerable, I brought the book back out and started reading it again, and yesterday, I finished it.
As God would have it, the timing of reading this book has gone hand in hand with my journey with: God, myself and with my love. Two years ago, I would not have been in a place to receive such profound words.
“So long, Insecurity” delves into our insecurities as woman kind. It’s not Tolstoy but it’s as close to matters of the heart that we women can get.
Some very human thoughts Beth Moore attacks are:
· Don’t use a guy like a mirror to see if you’re desirable- How many times have I done this? I don’t have enough fingers and toes to count.
· Insecurity's best cover is perfectionism- I can be better, I can be better!
· The very nature of pressure is to blow. If we let too much ride on a relationship, a blowout is inevitable.-Any relationship! Not just romantic ones.
· Jealousy is the result of a perceived threat.-So you feel threatened, so what? What’s the worst thing that could happen? God will walk you through the pain and you will come out the other side stronger.
· We don’t need to know everything– Next time you’re about to ask your boyfriend about his ex-girlfriend or you’re about to ask you friend what she really thought of someone think about this…We pry because we’re insecure and then as a result we are more insecure because we pried. We don’t need to know everything! Knowing everything is too much to handle.
Some of the points of salvation (because let’s face it, sometimes we’re so deep in the dark that we need saving):
· I have the right to dignity because God gave it to me. -No one can take that away from you. No one person gets to push your buttons. Don’t give them access.
· She is clothed with dignity and strength. –In our moments of insecurity most times we end up doing things that we wouldn’t want anyone to know about. We are so self-consumed that we go to great lengths to satisfy our ego.
· Where on earth did we come up with the idea that we have to subtract value from ourselves in order to give credit to someone else? –Can I get an Amen? Hallelujah! She can be pretty AND I can be pretty!
· In the breaking of every habit someone wills it first. –Will yourself to be secure. Moment by moment remind yourself that you have the capacity to be extra ordinary because of where you’ve been.
Insecurity doesn’t have to rule your every thought and your every action. It is possible to get through the day without feeling that sting of inferiority. You see, insecurity is fueled by a gripping fear. The kind of fear closes in on you and you can only focus on one thing and your heart starts to pound and you can feel your self-esteem shrinking. The love my life will leave me if he finds someone smarter and prettier—must get him tunnel vision. If I don’t bring wine to the party, I won’t be the favorite friend, she will. If I don’t work out every day, I won’t be cute and no one will pay any attention to me anymore. If I don’t wear mascara, I’m not pretty and my identity will slowly start to vanish.
The only way I have found to safely get myself from moment to moment is to trust that if it is happening, God has a reason. I have had so many fears that have come to fruition and it wasn’t easy, but I walked out the other side, stronger, more capable and more than good enough. Even if your worst fear happens, you will survive.
So take a deep breath and let go of your insecurity and your fears, you are more than good enough. I don't get there often, and I'm trying to get there more, but when I do, I find stillness in my mind that is too much for words. The wheels just stop.
I wish you stillness, peace and the confidence to walk through life with your head held high, proud of where you’ve been, what you've learned, where you are and where you’re going.
*I have written before about the need to “win.” And since I’m goal oriented, hearing someone say it’s not about winning or losing doesn't really do it for me, so for you goal oriented people out there, if you’re not trying to “win” what are you doing? You are being yourself and loving others. When you are being the most “you” you can be, you are winning.