We have ALL been there. You are feeling great and then suddenly just one little tiny comment throws you into a spiral of anxiety. You begin to question why you felt so great in the first place when things are obviously so awful. It seems funny when you see it written down but we are emotional creatures and this happens so quickly, without any connection to logic.
We all have insecurities but what makes us feel insecure can be unique to just us. Some people may feel insecure about what they’ve said (or left unsaid) in a meeting. Others may feel insecure about their relationship with their partner or their jobs, what they wish they had. We are surrounded by highly polished profiles on social media so it’s hard to see things that others are struggling with. But, make no mistake, everyone is struggling with something.
I felt my own insecurity around my body just the other day with a tiny comment (thanks mom!) about how I ‘would never lose weight if I ate standing up’. I love my mom like crazy but she has a way of cutting through any level of body confidence with an offhand comment. I always say that she and my daughter have no filter. They have the biggest hearts and are loyal to a fault but have the tendency to say the first thing that pops into their head, good or bad. Of course my mom DOESN’T think I need to lose weight but that is a part of her philosophy around food so it just came out.
But – can you relate? – my own insecurities about my figure immediately ramped up. I began to think, yes maybe it is time to cut back on what I’m eating. I thought hmm, maybe I was thinner a few months ago and perhaps it’s time to cut out snacking and work out just a touch more (if that’s possible). It’s a terrible spiral and my logical brain knows that it’s silly and unhealthy but my emotions keep the thoughts swirling.
So how can we deal with insecurities when they cloud our thoughts? One thing that can help is sharing your insecurities with someone you love and trust. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve quizzed my friends in texts after a fitness class saying, “hey, was that okay?” (instructor insecurity)
Another thing that really helps me is taking some time to quiet my mind, either through meditation or through a long walk. Through this, I can reconnect with my own feelings of what being beautiful, healthy or successful means. You can try to brush aside the external forces and consider whether having all the things or getting a million likes will really make you happy. In the case of my insecurity around my figure, taking time to reflect reminded me of the times that I DID become really stringent around food and how difficult and unsustainable that really was (and if that was really the ‘me’ I wanted my children to see).
Finally, it’s good to remember that everyone struggles with insecurities. I’ve read so many interviews with some of the most successful and beautiful people in the world and a common thread is the insecurities so many of them feel. Justin Bieber is an example of a celebrity who seemingly has it all but struggles a LOT. In 2021 he wrote on his Instagram: “All of us humans just want to be liked, fit in, belong, feel heard, be accepted… We all have our own insecurities that we try and hide and we make it seem like we have it all together…Aren’t we all broken? We can all hide behind superficial things but the truth is we are all hurting.”
So if you, like me, struggle with feelings that you could be better/thinner/prettier/more successful you are not alone. Just remind yourself that you are human and an emotional creature! But when you’ve had your moment, felt the frustration and are ready to move on, take some time to reflect on your own definition of beauty, love, or success. It may not be what you think!
A helpful little meditation:
Deepak Chopra is one of my favourite authors and I love his meditations…his voice is pure calmness. Here is a short meditation on self-love that I believe can be really helpful when we are feeling “lesser than.”