Struggles with Confidence
The blog post includes mentions of eating disorders. Please read with caution if any of these items triggers or upsets you.
Lately, I have been struggling a bit with my confidence. Throughout high school, I battled immensely with self-confidence and developed an eating disorder in my sophomore year that lasted through the beginning of my senior year. After I began fearing for my health from getting chest pains and not having my period for over a year, I started the recovery process.
My confidence has come back after my last year of high school. The last four years, I have been lucky enough to gain confidence and feel good about myself and my appearance. However, the past few months have been difficult on my self-esteem. Similar to the emergence of my eating disorder, it seemed to begin out of nowhere. I couldn’t pinpoint an exact moment but I know it began shortly after summer started.
I have found that some days, I have trouble starting and keeping up conversations and find myself stuttering or keeping quiet when I do want to speak. I second-guess myself and feel that I am taking up the time of others. Along with that, I have felt a decrease in my acceptance of my appearance. After conquering my eating disorder, I felt quite body confident and it has stayed that way thankfully, until now.
My negative thoughts about my body have not been as severe as they were when I was younger, but it has still been disappointing to have them return after so long. I am currently working through these feelings with my therapist.
I have learned that often times, confidence issues and eating disorders can be a product of stress. I know with my eating disorder, I felt that I was taking some control of my life and thought that it would make me feel prettier and happier.
Because of some recent stress in my life and many quick, unexpected changes, I have felt unhappy with myself. That can change between the decisions that I make, the way my hair looks, or the way that I talk to people depending on the day, or could be a mixture of all and more.
Unfortunately, many people struggle with confidence issues. After talking to a few close friends who I knew had confidence issues, it is apparent that these feelings can be long-lasting and tough to conquer.
To combat this, I have been trying everything I can to gain back that confidence I know is in there. Today, I am getting a haircut and trying out a new color and possibly a new cut as well. This will help with the stale feeling I have regarding my appearance. It will help me feel fresh and increase my confidence.
I have been making an effort to wear things that make me feel better about myself – outfits that flatter me and make me feel happy wearing them. This has helped me increase my confidence on days where it feels lower than usual.
Most importantly, I have not restricted my eating and have been standing strong in my recovery. I use a method my therapist calls “playing back the tape” where I remember how miserable I was when I had an eating disorder. I think about how exhausted and weak that I felt. I think about how people asked me if I was okay, and people I didn’t know calling me anorexic and how embarrassing that was. I think about the fear for my health that set in near the end of my disorder, and how nothing could be worth that suffering.
It has been a difficult blip but I feel secure in the fact that my confidence will return someday, and hopefully someday soon.
On low confidence days, is there anything you do to help yourself? Feel free to share below!