my nephew being delighted with his own reflection.
He has so much unquestioning self-belief in himself - if he wants something, he goes for it. How many years have I wasted, telling myself, 'You're not good enough, you'll never be good enough, you don't deserve this, all those other people are better than you.'? (More than I can count on my fingers and toes, that's for sure...)
I had a job yesterday and in the few days before, I was telling myself: "You're not good enough. You don't deserve this. You won't be able to do it. You'll mess this up for ever and never be asked back"
Honestly, try living with a friend like that! You wouldn't bother. I found myself feeling even MORE unconfident and unqualified and just SAD. Then yesterday morning, I gave myself a kick up the bum: "Ruth, they have offered you the job. YOUR job is to get on with it. It's that simple." It really helped. I had a fantastic day yesterday.
And I felt like a bit of a hypocrite because only 2 days before, I was talking to a friend about how she thinks she isn't good at languages, but actually she's really good at French. I was saying, "You ARE good. Your problem is that you keep saying to yourself that you're not confident with languages and it's a waste of time and energy - you're just procrastinating, putting your energy into that thought, rather than studying. The only way you will get better is if you just work on it. Take the no confidence thing out of the equation and just go to the lessons and do the homework." And I felt all motivational and powerful and wise and then I came home and did EXACTLY what I'd been preaching to her about not doing...
But hey. Life is a big long journey of learning. And they say:
The best time to plant a tree was 100 years ago.
The second best time is now.
So OK, I have spent 30+ years giving myself a hard time. Sure, it would have been great to have believed in myself the whole time. But since I didn't, the best time to start is now. It takes effort, but bring it on.
I hope that my nephew keeps hold of his positive can do attitude for ever.