So my twenties are nearly here and I cannot tell you how strangely exciting it feels on top of other birthdays. We all make that comment of, ‘oh, but I don’t feel any different‘ when we become a year older but entering official adulthood is kind of special in a ‘mum, you can’t tell me what to do anymore‘ kind of way. Nevertheless, this has got me feeling a little bit sentimental and nostalgic over my teenage years and how much I have grown as a person to being the clothes hoarding, over-eating, chatterbox that I am today!
All in all I think confidence is one of the major components of growing up. It is something that you may start to embrace naturally or sometimes more gradually. Some people find confidence in small doses, and some thrive in it, both allowing for impeccable people. I know that as a teenager, I was always fairly confident with those around me that I knew best and luckily felt comfortable during my high school years. Yet my lack of self-assurance was something which consistently threw me off for many years until I went to university. Should I be saying this? Should I wear this today or is that too out there? Shall I consider doing this instead? Every decision was faced with doubt and I was never headstrong enough to make my own firm decisions without a second opinion first whether that be fashion choices, or life choices.
Now looking back, I am significantly more confident in that sense now. Yes, I may sometimes have a day where I am not feeling completely comfortable in something I am wearing once I leave the house but once I realise that no one is staring at me because they really could not care less if I look ridiuclous or not, I start to relax. If I am ever not feeling too confident with a piece of coursework I am working on without doubting it first by comparing it to the standard of others, I now know that in the back of the mind I should not really give a shit because I AM capable of working just as well.
I think that working in retail since the age of sixteen has also been a tremendous confidence booster in my case. I actually remember all of my family making comments on how amazed they were that my shyness had all of a sudden been replaced by a new found confidence once I started working. I mean, when you have raging customers shouting down your ear about you not letting them return a item, you kind of do have to man up.
However, it is not just how you occupy your time, confidence is found through the amazing people you surround yourself with because they have the power to make the most positive impact on you whilst growing up. On top of my hilarious and caring family, from high school to university, I have always had great people in my life. From hysterical laughs to hysterical tears and underage drunken house parties between years and years of friendship. To newly found friendships that are already set to last a lifetime, I have been extremely blessed to grow up with such amazing, and slightly crazy, people.
So I would say to not let anyone in your life hold you back or bring down your confidence. If they do not bring out the best in you, they are not worth your time. If you are growing up with a part time job that perhaps limits your abilities or if you just simply hate it, do not give it anymore of your time. Find something else. Keep looking until you find something that is going to benefit you as a person and help you grow. Most importantly though, find something that you enjoy and throughout it all, just learn to love and care for yourself but make sure you have fun whilst doing it. Let yourself flourish into adulthood, and do not let any minor hiccups on the way stop you from being happy – because we ALL make them.
On one last note – I really do think my talents are being wasted… I think I should be a life coach or something?! Getting far too deep for a Monday morning.
Off the top of my head – because there are probably a whole lot more I have purposely tried to forget – here are some slightly humiliating hiccups I have had throughout my teenage years:
Having my eyebrows SO wrong! For a really long time I just did not get that part of my daily make-up routine right. They were an untouched mess wih just the odd pluck here and there, accompanied by a dodgy right eyebrow that was just noticably more bushy than the other. The way I used my crappy eyebrow pencil did not help too. They did resemble the dreaded ‘sperm brow’ I’m afraid. I am almost offended that my friends or my mum never really pointed out how bad they really were! It was not until I had perfectly waxed, threaded brows and discovered powder and brow gel that I uncovered the shame of what they used to be. Yikes! They were bad.
Being sick, a lot. I was always that person at a house party that went 0-100 and was spewing before I knew it. I wasn’t and never have been a heavy drinker, but before I really took any notice of that winning advice to not mix your drinks too much, I was pretty much a one sip and spew kinda gal. I am not even a lightweight, I think I just cannot handle flavoured shots to save my life. The smell of Apple Sourz alone makes me want to gag. Yet I am proud to say I was never a liability or too much of mess and my friends were always there for toilet duty with me. After a slight bit of sickness, I was always ready to go and join back in on the party – or at least ready to sleep it off. Always keeping it classy Ffi.
On stage mishaps. As an eager Year 7 who was dying to be the next Pixie Lott, me and my friend Emily decided to enter the talent show together. After auditioning with a powerful rendition of ‘Don’t Stop Believing’, we had made it on the line up. So when it came to the night and I sung the first verse of Chris Brown and Jordan Sparks ‘No Air’, it was time for Emily to belt her part out. Instead, the lovely Emily got stage fright and ran off stage leaving me awkwardly staring out to the crowd before I ran off too. It is hilarious looking back now and you better believe we went back out there and sung our hearts out a second time. Suffice to say, we did not win. Don’t worry though Em, I forgive you!
Anyway, here’s to turning twenty. Throughout my twenties I shall be vowing to exercise more, drink more water and try to spend a tiny, tiny bit less on clothes (because at the end of the day, I will still listen to what my mum advises me to do, even when I’m thirty! Mother knows best people).
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