The definition of "Insecure": 1. not firmly fixed; liable to give way or break. 2. not confident or assured; uncertain and anxious.
It actually hurts to admit this, but by definition, I have been insecure for literally the majority of my 28 years of life. When I was younger I was insecure about my dark skin color and my tall height. When I hit high school I was still insecure about my skin color and tall height, but now you could add acne to the list. Then in my early twenties I hit 275+ pounds and obesity was added to my long list of insecurities.
I remember experiencing a constant state of anxiety and if I'm being honest, I should have definitely been seeing a therapist because the anxiety crippled me. I would lie to get out of social events that I actually wanted to go to. I would decline any thing that even remotely resembled a public speaking situation. The reason why I felt crippled was because these were things I really, truly wanted to participate in. So much so that I would lie that I couldn't make it and then go home and cry about not being there. Sounds weird? Yea, it made no sense to me either. But I called the anxiety, "just being shy" and chalked it up to me being an extreme introvert. In reality, I needed help, but didn't know that I could ask for it. So I continued living a fracture of a life.
Once I turned 24, I COULDN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE! I felt that the true me, the me that God sees, was trapped inside the shell of insecurity. I needed to break free! So I began to think about what in my life looked like insecurity. Let's go back to the definition of insecure..
"not firmly fixed": There was nothing I stood firm on. I felt easily persuaded and influenced. I needed an anchor, something to keep me grounded. So I nourished my relationship with God. "You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you"-Isaiah 26:3.
"liable to give way or break": I never used to follow through with anything. Anytime it seemed too hard or would make me go out of my comfort zone, I just gave up on it altogether. So instead of breaking every time something was hard, I began to slowly force myself to push past it. First it was with speaking my poetry in public and then it transitioned into my weight loss. I had to go one day at a time, but eventually I stopped breaking and started fighting.
"not confident or assured": Even when I knew the answer was right, I would question myself. Even when I knew the idea was good, I doubted that I could pull it off. So little by little I did things that would build up my confidence. I spoke up more in group settings. I would practice saying my opinions in private so that once I was in group settings my tone sounded more confident and firm. I know that tactic may seem silly to some, but when you are desperate to change you will do whatever needs to be done.
"uncertain and anxious": Have you ever heard the saying, "comparison is the thief of joy"? Well, comparison stole my joy and everything else good with it. I would gather up the courage to fight, but comparison would cause me to feel self conscious and make me doubt myself. So I lost 100 pounds to help increase my self confidence and I slowly began to feel less anxious. I was proud of my body which caused me to stop comparing myself so much. Along with the weight loss came the loss of constantly thinking that people were talking about how big I was, which drastically helped to decrease the anxiety.
I know that insecurity is never a simple issue. What seems silly to others may be the very thing that has kept you in bondage. I want to challenge you today. Get a pen and paper and break down the definition of "insecure" like you saw me do in this blog. Write down the factors in your life that match the definition. Now, think about how to fight those factors. Overcoming insecurity won't happen over night and I think it's an ugly visitor that comes knocking even when you thought you locked the gate for good. Sometimes all it takes is a simple change of mindset and other times it'll take a strategic plan, but you can fight those things that cause you to feel insecure. You can live a life that is confident and assured!
Tell me how you've been overcoming your insecurities!