Insecurity is a sneaky one. A dirty, sneaky little sneak.
I’ve been spending lots of time thinking about insecurity. I would say years actually. I actually wrote a really vague reflection on part of some insecurity issues I dealt with back in 2014.
When I was younger – maybe 16-22 years old, I was kind of a jerk. Not because I wanted to be a jerk to people, but because I was REALLY insecure about how I felt about MYSELF, and so to avoid dealing with that, I was just an asshole to people to put on a front to NOT have to deal with my own shit. Maybe you knew me then, and maybe you didn’t. If you did, I hope you see a shift :).
Being a jerk isn’t something I strive to be. I actually probably am overly compassionate to other people and how they feel, even if it isn’t vocalized (I’m team introvert, yo). On the same note though, I also would say that as soon as I smell something fishy, I’m the first one to put my guard up and NOT give the benefit of the doubt any longer.
I can notice tons of other times I act out of insecurity. I’m going to write on some of them here because they might resonate with you.
Imposter insecurity. I’m new in my field, under 10 years “officially” working in wellness under the guise of strength, nutrition, and mindset coaching. The more I learn, the more I realize I DON’T know, and that brings out all kinds of dandy behavior in me, making me on guard waiting for people to realize I’m really an imposter who doesn’t know jack. Sometimes, I shut down and just assume I don’t know anything and why even bother. Sometimes, I provide TOO MUCH information in a context that isn’t beneficial because I need to feel like I exerted my knowledge. Sometimes I have a good few week stretch where I want to cash in the towel on this, and then don’t, because I remember I’ll still do this stuff even if I don’t get paid, and that’s because I love it. Even if strength, nutrition, or mindset wasn’t my “job”…..I’ll still be reading books on the topics, still practicing on myself on these topics, and still diving in head first.
Not Enough insecurity. In this specific case, I can always realize AFTER I’m feeling like I’m not enough that I’m feeling like I’m not muscular enough, lean enough, happy enough, blah blah blah enough. Here is EXACTLY how I know. It’s because I begin implementing “plans” or “to-do lists” that are too extreme to fit into my life. Literally, if I find at the end of the week that I’ve been researching new ways to build muscle, looking at altering all about nutrition habits for something a bit more hardcore or restrictive, or reading happiness self help books, it’s time to stop.that.noise. And instead, spend some time reflecting on why I’m doing this, and most often enough, it means I’m feeling like I’m not enough. And that happens for a variety of reasons that we can chat about another day.
I’m RIGHT insecurity. This one is sticky and messy. I like being right in situations. And that’s a hard pill to swallow. Here’s a really freaking public example of that. It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of the MLM supplement pyramid scheme thingy. I have frequently blasted that lifestyle or method, and while it DOES make my neck vein bulge because I feel like innocent people are prayed upon while people who AREN’T qualified are making quite a few bucks off them, I also acknowledge that my approach is ALSO not ideal. My approach is yelling out word vomit online about how they are “wrong” and in turn, making the assumption that I’m “right.” And here is what this is doing….it is taking my energy away from creating helpful and awesome shit to put out into this world to ACTUALLY help people get off the crazy cardio and off the diet mindset rollercoaster. It’s also adding one more decibel to the already too loud Big Diet and Big Fitness world. It’s STILL not helping people uncomplicate this stuff if I yell random stuff out into the interwebz. So, while I’m definitely a work in progress on this one, it’s definitely something I’ve been noticing about myself, and trying to address it and use that energy towards other ways of creating (such as taking a really freaking awesome coaching course this year) helpful stuff. I’m also just quietly removing this MLM stuff from my presence, my feeds, my everything, behind the scenes, and doing my best to put out content that is helpful, useful, factual, simple, and sustainable – you know, protein and produce, sprinkle in treats during the week, lift, go for a walk, go to bed on time….that sort of stuff.
I first came across this quote when Ronda Rousey fought Bethe Correia. It stuck with me right away. And unfortunately, I don’t know who gets the credit for it, other than ‘unknown.’
When I feel confident, I don’t feel like I need to open my mouth so damn much to let everyone know about it. When I feel insecure, I can be loud as hell, in a variety of ways. Interesting, isn’t it?
So I guess there is some takeaway in all this. Well, at least I hope there is for you! Here is my two cents.
When you feel that loud feeling where you need to be heard about something, before being loud, think about stopping and reflecting about what is causing that feeling. I’m not saying DON’T act. I’m saying, stop and think for a second….is this YOU talking, or is this some sort of insecurity talking. Because for me, often times, insecurity makes me want to be big and loud on some certain topic. AND, sometimes, that’s really well intentioned because I’m passionate about something in particular. And sometimes, it’s because I need to hear my voice over other voices to make myself less insecure.
So, I’m all in for having a voice on stuff, but I also know, that for me, I can easily have a voice just to react, and not have that voice to actually use it for something true and honest and good for me and for who I’m hoping to communicate with.
There is a difference in these two things. I think the most important thing to do is to just stop for a second and sit with that feeling or reaction. Is it true? Is it real? Or did something strike a nerve and now we gotta jump and react?
Ooof, you guys. Some of this is a hard pill to swallow, but I’m working on it. Stick around! Let’s wade through this stuff together!
\PS – I send out “how to” help to my email subscribers weekly. Are you on that list? If not, head over here to get signed up. There is more coming on this insecurity topic to inboxes this week!