My thoughts on Self confidence and the effects of social media.Self Confidence, can often appear as our very best friend or worst enemy at the drop of a hat.
For many of my Clients, friends and colleagues,lack of self-confidence is one of the biggest issues leading to feelings of low mood and anxiety. With today’s social media presence, and high-industry standards, it’s no surprise that women (and men) all over the country are feeling an unhealthy dislike of their own appearance or life style, in favour of someone else’s whom they barely know, but follow closely on instagram or digital channels.
Reality TV has shown us the glitz and glamour, a plush lifestyle and wrinkle free faces that some of us could only fantasize about. But why is it that we feel that the standard that we see on TV and social media, is the perfection that we strive for? We become conditioned by what we read in the magazines, what we scroll through on our phones and what we watch on the television. It can be hard not to feel the familiar pang of jealousy when you see someone from a similar background to you suddenly reaching the dizzy heights of stardom,unveiling a new body, relationship, or displaying their wealth. We bring the phrase ‘1st world problems’ to a new and upsetting meaning.
What we fail to remember, or acknowledge are the parts of people’s lives that we don’t see. People often publicize the BEST parts of their lives, the positive events, perfect selfies and progress pics because it’s what they are willing to share with the world. (And deservedly so) If we delve deeper, it is possible to find some excellent influencers who do a great job at showing us ‘real life.’ The make up free, bloated or tired reality that many of us face.
For me, I believe that much of the issue, is in fact our own thought processes and insecurities that trigger the feelings of inadequacy and lack of confidence. I work with so many beautiful women, who believe that they are ‘ugly’ or ‘haggard’ and I often have to convince them of their beauty inside and out.
What other people have, shouldnt affect how we view ourselves. By comparing ourselves to others, we are placing each other on a level playing field, when circumstances are likely to be very different. I encourage my clients to remember the progress they have made, it could be that they have gone a few days without a panic attack, they have left a toxic relationship, or simply that they have completed a task that was really important to them. However big or small, these successes should be celebrated and remembered. I ask my clients to list 5 positive things about themselves, examples could be physical appearance, achievements, or facts based on improved wellbeing or ability, and keep the list close to them, to be referred back to at times of self-doubt.
We are all only human beings. Jealousy, inadequacy, and self-doubt are perfectly normal emotions that we all experience, but rather than feeding these, lets also focus on pride, self-respect and belief. Anything is possible if you put your mind to it, and however long it takes, we all get there in the end!