I’ve proudly conquered many fears in my life. One fear that comes to mind is the fear of talking to people. When I was younger, I was so crippled with anxiety and fear of what other people thought of me. It mostly had to do with my upbringing and people not understanding my introversion. I was so frustrated with life that there was a period in my preteen years where I became withdrawn.
While dating Bryan in my early twenties, he took me out dancing one night and commented that I was afraid of people. He was so right. I didn’t think I was worthy and cared too much of what other people thought of me. But I vowed to conquer this fear because I wanted more for myself, and I didn’t want that to dampen our relationship.
From that point, my daily life became an experiment where I would practice not being afraid. I spoke up more openly and expressed my opinions. If I recognized someone in a store or wherever, I would approach them first. In Chicago, I commuted mostly by walking and public transportation. I decided to walk with my head up and give eye contact (but not too much). None of this was comfortable at first, but I carried through with my decision.
With time, I became less afraid to talk to people, and I didn’t let any fears of what they might think of me affect what I did with my life or what I thought about myself.
Now, at my age, it’s true you don’t care too much about what other people think. I do care about what the people who mean the most to me think, but that’s only for certain things. I’m not afraid of people anymore and have learned we all have our own stuff we’re working through. It’s best not to take things personally. Most people are not thinking that hard about you.
I’ve blossomed into a self-assured, confident woman whom I am proud of.
Bloganuary: Day 15 prompt