By Lindy Earl
At some point in your life you have probably dealt with insecurity. Some people suffer from insecurity while others just push through it. I know both. I think the people who suffer from it can help themselves by dealing with it. For those who push through it, congratulations.
What causes insecurity? In a word, feelings. They may be feelings of lack of being loved or lovable; feeling of not being good enough; feelings that you don’t deserve love; feelings of depression.
My first question is, how do we fight insecurity? First, pulling out the right memories can help fight insecurity. Remember your successes. Remember how hard you’ve worked to reach goals you’ve achieved. Remind yourself that you have a lot to offer. Second, list your attributes. You have talent and charm. You’re kind and thoughtful and never kick animals. You patiently wait your turn in line – okay, you wait your turn in line. You don’t take 11 items to the 10 items or fewer checkout. You’re nice!
Next, call friends and supportive family members. They love you for a reason – ask them to remind you of those reasons. Seriously, have them list the reasons that you’re so great and why they like you. You may already have some of those characteristics on your list, but if you’re lucky you’ll hear a few more. And you’ll smile.
My next question is, why does insecurity hit? Sometimes there is a reason, a starting point, such as a fight with a sibling or boss or friend or spouse. I think if we can find the origin, we can fight the insecurity immediately and possibly in the future. Do not give people power over you any more!
Also, insecurity could be instigated by a bad night’s sleep which just puts you in a mood, and the mood may manifest itself as depression. Again, it’s recognizing the trigger that makes the cure possible. First, by isolating the reason, you can choose to be mature and acknowledge that you’re overtired. You can also closet yourself away from everyone to avoid sharing your feelings of insecurity or have them escape in ugly ways. Last, you can fix it by sleeping earlier – it’s worth giving up a movie. I promise.
Now we’re getting kind of personal, but it could be a lack of discipline on your part, such as failure to exercise or eating too much chocolate, which makes you question your choices and . . . wham! Suddenly you’re off on a long list of everything you imagine to be wrong with you and your life. And all you did was overindulge in chocolate – okay, I’m talking about myself here. But you know what I mean. If you are disciplined you are less likely to succumb to insecurity.
It could be a physical challenge – you don’t feel attractive, especially if you’ve been teased for any reason, whether it’s weight (over or under. I know underweight teasing doesn’t sound bad, but I promise, it is. It can create a horrible body image that you fight just like overweight people fight), or a skin issue – rosacea, vitiligo, any rash, even acne. I know that physical challenges can make some people painfully insecure. This is something you just need to deal with and accept about yourself. If you dislike your height, and always wish you were taller or shorter (usually taller, but there are some tall people who would give away a few inches), acknowledge that it’s just not going to happen! Wishing you were a different height is not logical. There are better things to obsess over than things you can’t change.
Insecurity can be caused by unemployment or underemployment. It can be caused by feeling you don’t make enough money, or aren’t appreciated at work or home. Why can’t people see how fabulous you are and that they should hire you and that you should be promoted? It’s so obvious to us, yet somehow, it doesn’t happen, resulting in our second guessing ourselves.
It could be nothing at all! You just feel needy and crummy and insecure for no discernible reason. The result is that you feel like you’re being punished when you’ve done nothing wrong, thus you end up insecure. It’s a vicious cycle.
The most difficult question is, how to fight insecurity? I don’t really know. I’m sorry. I want to share a quick fix, but I don’t think there is one. I think there’s surrounding yourself with positive influences, saying your affirmations aloud daily, trusting in a higher power. I think it also helps when you realize that everybody is so egocentric and worried about themselves, that nobody is thinking about you, so you don’t need to be insecure. You’re fine – the rest of the world is messed up. Maybe it helps when you realize that we shouldn’t take ourselves too seriously. I think what has helped me, internally, is to realize that I’m okay – if others have a problem with me then the problem is theirs. For years I allowed myself to be manipulated by others shaking their heads at me if they didn’t like what I said. It takes a strong inner character to look back and think, “No. I’m okay.”
I continue to deal with the insecurity issue, but I’m better. Maybe age helps. Maybe surviving a divorce helps. Five years later and I’m still here. I’m battered and bruised and a little worse for wear, but I’m standing.
So maybe the way to fight insecurity is to stand up and declare yourself free. You are fine the way you are. You take responsibility for your life. You are not going to allow anyone, not even your past, to make you apologize for who you are. Stand up and take control and simply refuse the next helping of insecurity when it’s passed your way.
That’s Life After Divorce.
Lindy is a Speaker, Columnist, Author, and Consultant. Contact her at LMEarl@EarlMarketing.com or find and like her page on Face Book, and join her FB support group, Single Again: From Devastation to Dating. You can subscribe (for $1/month) to her Life After Divorce Newsletter at www.LindySpeaks.com.