Wednesday, April 30, 2008


No matter what they say.

I'm not always brimming with self-confidence, even if most days I try to talk up the positives. I am all too quick to compare myself unfavourably to others, and I'm pretty good at letting other people get under my skin. Hyper-sensitive is my middle name.

I have put my name down to do a one-day (Cycling) Ride Leader training course in a few weeks time. So what, huh? Well, normally I'd have just stood back and let Marc do it on behalf of our family, because it is more his thing. (He's just a natural leader.) But he's got netball coaching commitments that day, and there's no way I'm standing in for them (again!). I do stand firm on some issues! And the BUG (Bicycle User Group) needs people to support this course, and so I feel like one of us should go.

But more importantly I think I need to do it for myself.

The problem? These days I'm much more comfortable cruising along in the supporter role. The 2IC. (All care and no responsibility perhaps..?)

I'm all for learning stuff .. but the thing that scares me most is the concept of being (offically) assessed and judged by someone else. A written exam? - pffft - that wouldn't worry me. But I'm imagining that, given the latest trend in courses (even in First Aid!) we will have to 'act out' some sort of scenario in the class and be judged upon it. Taking turns to be the leader or something, and that just freaks me right out. I have never harboured any desires or abilities as an actor, yet I feel that that is what I will be judged on.

(I've considered going back to uni and doing a Dip Ed, and becoming a teacher, but the thing that scares me most about teaching is being assessed by someone else on my ability to teach!)

It doesn't help that I know there will be someone involved in this bike course who is the type that has this amazing ability to make me feel insecure. (I won't link to it now, but I did do a post once about a person who did a big rant about employing bloody housewives who had the temerity to hope for flexible working hours... and so, yep... And who last time I spoke to them after a ride, they ignored me... Hmmmm. )

I have had a bit of a history in jobs with other women, in particular, who have taken it upon themselves to make me feel like I am useless, and inadequate - who in fact set out to bring me down - so perhaps I am carrying a bit of baggage around with me. (Pretty heavy baggage to be carrying around for 20 years, huh...)

So, anyway, having bitten the bullet and decided this week to get over myself and do this course (*big deep breath*), I've had to do a lot of self-talking. (I do a lot of self-talking in general about trying to pull myself together anyway - god it gets noisy up in my head sometimes - and this little example is but a small chunk out of the barrier I need to climb over so that I can figure out what to do with the rest of my life ...)

I also confessed my anxieties about the course to the BUG president and he very wisely told me that I'm not the only person who finds certain people difficult ("ask around!") and "Don't take anything personally is a rule for living happily. Another one is face your demons." (Worth putting in bold I thought. Very good advice.)

For some reason this song - below - jumped into my head the other night, even before that exchange above, and I found myself half singing it to myself under my breath. I have no idea where it came from. A mantra from above? Then, in the supermarket checkout yesterday, I heard it again - for real this time - being played on the PA.

It must be a sign.

So for me. And for Rootie this week, too. And Magic B, lately. (Both of whom are dealing with far worse than me.) But also probably every one of us at some point, to varying degrees.

This is for us.

[For those with technological hassles, the song is I Am Beautiful]


Darn - I couldn't get the song to play (which is more about my computer than any other technological snaffle).

I think some very sound advice was given there. Just because someone makes us feel like a bug doesn't mean they singled us out for special attention - usually they have been bug-bedazzlers far and wide.

And good on you for stepping up and having a go.
Go for it!
There is a person from my past- 15 yrs ago, who still enters my dreams and makes me feel worthless and insecure. Why is it those folks have a bigger impact on us than the good ones? It doesn't make sense.
Here's the thing, Tracey. The only reason people do this thoughtless, cruel thing and bring others down is to make themselves feel better - because believe it or not, they are insecure themselves. You may not see it, or the reasons why they feel that, but essentially it's a defence mechanism. I suggest you counter by being really really nice - not placatory, just nice. And man, will they look like idiots then.

And whilst I like Christina Aguilera, I think this link to you-tube is more appropriate. Take no notice of the video but the tune is awesome...
Interesting song PM, I can see why it's good, but it doesn't really float my boat. The music isn't really my sort of music, and it's the sort of lecture that I don't react that well to - the "well, look what so & so overcame." Looking at other people who succeed just makes me feel more crap about myself.
The reason I like the I am Beautiful song (not necessarily because Christina whatsername sings it.. I honestly didn't even know who sang it!) is because it reminds me of what is within me, without referring to The Successful People.

Rootie, exactly... why do we remember the negative people?
Good point Tracey.
What a wonderful post Tracey. I really enjoyed reading it, could relate totally with it and want to cheer you on to bite the bullet and go for it. As for the intimidating wank - eff 'em.
Don't you just love when the universe sends you a momentary theme song.
Good on you for not allowing yourself to give into fears. That will be the biggest hurdle, I'm sure.

And thank you! Things are starting to look up for me. Mostly.
Tracey- I wish I knew. Why do I let one criticism or snotty look ruin my week, when I have a husband and children who are infinitely more important, telling me every day how much they love me? It makes absolutely no sense at all.
Great post. It's interesting to know that building self-confidence can be as easy as ABC. Interestingly enough, offer good tips too. Might be interesting to check it out.

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