I Too Lack Confidence

"Abbey, you're so confident!" This is a comment that I've received on numerous blog posts and honestly, it still surprises me every time it pops up. In some ways, yes, I suppose I do come across as quite self-assured. I'm confident enough to share bikini photos on a blog where they can viewed by several thousand people. I'm confident enough to bare my tummy rolls to the world. I'm confident enough to talk openly about sex. But is this really the full picture? I, for one, sure don't think so. Anyone who regularly reads my blog might be a bit shocked if I were to list all of the things I'm shit scared of doing (excuse my French). So today, in the name of openness and honesty, that's exactly what I'm going to do!

The point of this post is not just to embarrass myself.
It's to show you that even the people who seem the most confident are a little bit insecure too.
Insecurities are human, and there's no shame in having them. 

Without further ado, let's get into the list, shall we? Here are some of the things I just don't have the confidence to do:

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Jumper: H&M (similar)  |  Skirt: H&M (similar)  | Boots: Ego Shoes

    • Play my choice of music on speakers: What if someone hears what I'm listening to and laughs at me? I enjoy bad noughties pop and whatever chart music captures my attention, but I'm so terrified of being judged that if anyone asks me to plug in my phone to a loudspeaker, I'll make up pretty much any excuse to avoid it. 
    • Admit to what I'm reading: Sometimes, I like to read classic literature: Woolf, Tolstoy, Hemingway, the list goes on. Other times, I like to read chick-lit trash. Why? Because it's fun, light-hearted and sometimes you just don't wanna think about a plot too much - y'know? I wholeheartedly agree with Rachel's post that no choice of TV show / book / movie should be sneered at and considered "inferior" but I still can't shake this insecurity.
    • Sing in front of anybody: My Dad once made a joke that I sound like a strangled cat when I sing, and although he probably wasn't being serious, now I can't sing in front of anybody for fear of making a fool of myself.
    • Leave a message on an answering machine: I HATE the sound of my own voice. I shudder every time I hear myself on recording, so I try not to put anyone else through that horror.
    • Admit to being proud of myself: Honestly, I think I have done a few things in my life that I deserve to be openly proud of. However, my insecurities tell me that I'll be known as the big-headed, stuck-up bitch if I say "yes I am proud of what I've achieved". I think this is something that I definitely need to work on.
    • Take the lead in conversations: Even with people I've been friends with a long time, people who I'm pretty sure like me (or just tolerate me really well), I hate taking the lead in a conversation. I'd always prefer to talk about topics that they're interested in than risk boring them with what I have to say. I don't have the confidence to introduce my own topic of conversation. 

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      However, I'm not going to sit here today and be a total Negative Nancy! Although you may not have realised it so far, this post also showcases one of my newest confidence wins! When I first started blogging, I would never have had the balls to take a shot for Instagram out in public, even if it was just of a pretty flower display, or a flatlay of my food in a restaurant. Even not so long ago, I shot the majority of my holiday OOTD photos by the pool early in the morning so that I was unlikely to be caught in the act. But recently, I plunged myself in at the deep end and asked my friend Hayley to shoot with me in a public park and a cafe, and I'm not ashamed to admit that I LOVE the results (mainly due to Hayley's amazing photography - she gets full credit for the snaps in this post!).

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      So, to round off this post on a high note, I thought I would end with sharing my three top tips for feeling confident that I'm trying to incorporate more into my life. You ready?
      • Feel put together. Whether you need to gain confidence for an important meeting at work, or if you want to head outside and grab those perfect autumnal shots, putting on an outfit or even just a makeup look that makes you feel great really does help you take on the world! Even your phone case can be incorporated into a flawless outfit, as I've hopefully shown here with my new case from GoCustomized*! The wooden case has my choice of design and wording actually engraved into it, creating a gorgeous textured effect. The creation process on the GoCustomized website was simple and intuitive, and the case was very reasonably priced too. At just £19.99, I was incredibly impressed at the quality! The wood of the case is perfectly autumnal and works well with the mustard colours that are oh-so fashionable this season.
      • Don't be afraid to laugh at yourself. Trying not to take yourself too seriously really helps. When Hayley and I were shooting at the 6 Degrees Coffee House in Leicester, Hayley took some snaps of me from outside the shop, looking through the window. An old man walking past gave us *SUCH* a funny look (he's obviously never heard of bloggers, his loss!). Instead of letting him make us feel self-conscious, Hayley and I carried on and got those perfect shots, although we did have to take a quick break as we were laughing too hard! Finding the funny side of potentially awkward moments really does help them breeze over, allowing you to retain that confident feeling.
      • Just go for it. I don't know about you, but putting a task off makes me want to do that thing about a million percent less. Seize the day - you're capable of so much more than you think!

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      A huge thank you goes out to the wonderful Hayley for shooting these photos with me, and of course to the lovely people at GoCustomized for allowing me to try out their design services. As well as the wooden cases like mine, they offer from wallet cases, cork cases, silicone covers and hard covers, whatever your preference. You can personalise them with your own photos, text, and graphic designs too - the options are endless! You simply must check GoCustomized out!

      Have you had any confidence wins lately? What gives you a confidence boost? Please share in the comments below!

      Until next time,

      A x

      *This is a collaborative post with GoCustomized. The phone case included in this post was sent to me for free.