All my early life, I’ve struggled with the fear that I am a loser.
To be like everyone else
As a kid and into young adulthood, I didn’t like myself very much. I really wanted:
To feel more confident and less sensitive.
More confidence and less sensitivity
To fit in and finally be one of the crowd.
At that time, there were many things that I desperately wanted to change about myself. In high school, I believed that I stuck out no matter and I was constantly uncomfortable in my own skin. I thought if I could successfully be more like everyone else, I’d finally be able to stop believing I was a loser.
Hiding that I am a loser feeling
I tried everything I could to shift these hated traits so I could blend in better. I pushed myself to be more social than what truly felt comfortable. When things upset me, I pretended that I wasn’t really upset. And I went along with activities that didn’t really interest me, just so that I could be one of the crowd.
“Coincidentally,” at same time during High School and then into college, I also started experiencing panic attacks, debilitating depression, and anxiety. I couldn’t sleep and I often had rashes on my arms and legs.
The consequences of hiding my why am I such a loser feelings
As I grew into my early and then late 20s, these challenges became overwhelming. While continuing to try and blend in with those around me, I started taking anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medication.
Nothing that I did helped. My husband (who was my boyfriend at the time) was at a loss. Everything was upsetting me. My belief that I am a loser dominated my thoughts and I pushed myself to try and “be better” and more “normal.”
Location, location, location
At that time, Kevin and I were living in San Francisco. I didn’t realize it then, but SF was the perfect backdrop for me to let go of that “I am a loser” belief. If I was a loser for not fitting in, San Francisco was full of losers! So many San Franciscans marched to the beat of their own drummer there. It was liberating.
Now that I was living on the opposite coast from where I grew up in New England and didn’t know anyone, I felt more free to investigate what being “me” really was. There wasn’t anyone around to tell me that I was wrong. My perspective around “loserdom” began to lose it’s hold on me.
Finding Strength in the belief that I am a Loser
Without realizing it, I began exploring the things that made me different instead of putting them down.
I never felt excited about sharing my feelings with groups of women friends so I started choosing my friends more carefully. For me, personal connection beat group connection every day and I was able to develop a couple important, yet deep friendships.
I noticed that if when took care of myself (and my energy), by doing what made me happy, versus what I thought I should be doing, my confidence was higher. Imagine that! When I did the things I loved, I felt better about myself and much more secure.
Realizing the Leader
And then, something incredible emerged through me doing the things that really worked for me: other people were noticing me. They weren’t noticing me to laugh at point at how different I was, but instead to look up to me and point out how different I was from them.
And that’s when I realized it. Leaders are leaders because they ARE different. My belief that I was a loser was old and outdated. These things that made me so different – and so uniquely me. They are the things that make me special.
Today, I am finally (mostly) comfortable with my differences and I help others become comfortable with theirs. I started my own school of animal communication and intuition, I’ve written self-help books, and more.
Most excitingly, because I am living authentically and embracing my differences, I no longer struggle with depression, panic attacks or anxiety.