Today I'm going to discuss something that hasn't really been a topic I think about much. Being in a slump for the past couple of months has really brought about a lot of bad feelings, and not seeing much progress in the scale department really put the pressure on. Today, I'm washing the physical aspect of my progress away and focusing on the "me" within - self esteem.
Now, if you were to talk to a person that knows me pretty well and asked that person to describe me - I guarantee that the words "self confident" would come out. Depending on the person you ask, the words could be negative or positive. I think of myself, and others agree, that I'm very self confident. I have learned, though, that there is a huge difference between self confidence and self esteem.
My self confidence can sometimes be a fault. I often describe myself as a little too confident in the way I carry myself. I'm honest, tell you what's on my mind, and don't hold back. I don't get stressed out over big assignments, situations, or other things that cause people to doubt themselves. No matter how people think of me because of it, it's who I am - and I'm proud of it. The difference comes though, when I describe myself. I will tell you that "I'm good at what I do" but hearing words that describe me such as "pretty" or "beautiful" cause me to cringe.
It's so funny how I can look at myself through two different eyes. I've always been confident, but always lacked self esteem. I'm not about to declare that I've had a major break though and all of a sudden I think I'm smoking hot - but after a conversation I had with Sanity and another close friend the other day I did realize that I'm slowly but surely building my self esteem, feeling better about the way I look, and liking what's looking back at me in the mirror.
We were discussing going out. It has become quite common in the past few months for me to get dressed up and hit the town with Sanity. I always thought it was because I really didn't have anyone to go out with - and once Sanity came in to my life, I had someone that would hang out with me. Then I realized that having a close friend had nothing to do with it. To be totally honest, a year ago I HATED going out. The thought of having to dress up, put make-up on and go out in public was like ripping my finger nails off with tweezers. The rare occasions that Hubby and I decided to go out for the evening was torture. I would spend hours in my closet, emotionally ripping through clothes trying to find something - anything - that would magically turn my fat into fab. Of course, that never happened. I would end up getting dressed and feeling miserable about the way I looked. I would feel frumpy, fat, unattractive... and it bothered me.
Now, things are different. I LOVE going out, and maybe too much. I go out at least once a month - if not more - and when I do, I have such an amazing time. I don't spend hours in my closet. I can grab a pair of jeans, a cute shirt, and BAM I'm ready to go. While I'm out, I don't obsess over who's looking at me and thinking "DAMN that girl should not be wearing that" or "wow, that is one big girl". I can relax, have a good time - and I've gone from being the elephant in the room to the life of the party.
Something else that has really fueled my fire in the "self esteem" department is the new attention I get from guys while I'm out. It's mind boggling to some people, but I actually enjoy getting a little attention from guys. Hubby doesn't go out very much, he'd much rather stay at home. He's fine with me going - and wants me to have a good time. He knows that I would never, EVER cheat on him. In fact, I come home after each night out and share every detail with him. A few weeks ago, I received my first number from a random guy in a bar. That has NEVER happened to me before - and you'd think I'd won the lottery. I was so happy that I had received the attention. I shared it with Hubby, and he was happy for me. I know you're thinking "is he crazy?" No. He's not. He's supportive. He knows that losing 60lbs is a really big deal. He knows that I'm starting to feel better in regards to the way I look. He's happy that I no longer live in baggy sweats and t-shirts. He knows that he can say the word "lingerie" around me - and won't end up with a black eye because of it. I am changing - and he's liking the changes.
The conversation with Sanity really opened my eyes - like always. I still have a long way to go before I hit my target weight - but the changes that have already happened are huge. With every pound that I lose, I gain in self esteem. With every dress size that I go down, I get more excited about how I look - and love what I'm seeing. The old me is disappearing before my eyes - literally - and the new me is ripping through. A me that is self confident AND has self esteem. A me that nowlikes to go shopping, likes to hang out with my friends, a me that likes to get a little dressed up and wear feminine clothes...I like her, she must stay around.
Thus, brings me to my long winded point. I like the person I'm becoming. I know that I have to work hard to keep her - at any moment she can start to fade away. If I let myself slip, if I falter...she will be gone. There's the motivation.
"Hearing others tell you that you're beautiful is nice - but worth nothing if you don't believe it. Being able to tell yourself you're beautiful, now that's priceless."Till next time. ;)