For my 35th birthday, my dad bought me a drum set. And with it came a lesson on confidence that I didn't even know I needed to learn. But I'm jumping ahead, let me start at the beginning.
I have always been different. Since I was a child I had a spirit that I can only imagine my mom would've equally so proud of and yet at times might also drive her crazy. I've always wanted to see and change the world (still do) and as a result, challenge just about every rule. It also made me want to do everything and go everywhere. In a non-boastful way, I have am naturally very gifted at many things. As a result, I'd try something for the 1st time and completely excel at it. To be honest, I didn't think there was much I couldn't do.
Some people may even say that "can do anything" attitude still exists for me today but to be honest, there are times when I don't think it about myself. And it took this drum kit to finally confront that self-doubt.
As soon as the drum kit arrived, I knew I was in love. My Dad is a drummer and naturally, he tried to get me into musical instruments. As a kid, me tried with a keyboard. I played around and learned how to play, but the love for it never grew and therefore the desire never stuck. After college I took 2 years of guitar lessons. I learned the lessons and could play songs but again my heart wasn't in it and it didn't stick. But as an adult, I felt this strong desire to play the drums. No real idea why. SoI told my drummer father that I too someday would like to play the drums. When the sparkly purple set arrived on my birthday, I knew he had gotten me the perfect gift.
Within the 1st 48 hours, the drum set was together and I was ready to start playing! I searched YouTube for a beginners drum lesson and found a woman instructor I liked. I started watching her videos and following her instructions and every everyday after work for an entire week, I was in the basement playing each new lesson. I just couldn't wait to play. I practiced beats everywhere I went - in the car, the shower, at work. It had finally found a musical instrument I loved.
As the lessons got more complex, I found that if I didn't think about it too much, my body would just take over and keep the beat. But, then as often happens in everyday life, my mind would question what I was doing and say nasty things to me. As a result, I'd second guess my movement, the music I created didn't sound as good and I'd often mess up. The lack of confidence I was creating by my own self-talk had an actual consequence, unlike in real life when I just tried to hide it.
It was in that moment that I realized the issue was all in my head. The more I practiced, the better I sounded, and the less I needed my head to "think" and mess me up.
So I started to reflect back (as I often do when I come to some philosophical understanding) and tried to figure out where my nasty self-talk started and I had lost that confidence. I racked my brain for weeks but couldn't figure it out. Until I was with some amazing women at a dinner and I heard one of the women talk about her young daughter already being clawed at by little boys and then all the memories started flossing back.
I was sexually assaulted twice before I was even old enough to drive. I remember the first time it happened and my spunky self was standing up to a bully who was being inappropriate to a friend. I was strong and confident and in that moment when he grabbed me, I saw that self fade away. I honestly think that was the moment where I started doubting myself, second guessing everything.
Funny how now, 2 decades later, I'm finally starting to overcome those issues. I've spent a lot of time in the last few weeks working on subtle changes to how I present myself to the world to help build that confidence back up. I'm happy to report that with a little bit of effort, I've had amazing results in a very short period of time. I'm trusting myself more and feel like I'm finally in the place I'm meant to be, heading on a path of greatness.
So, I will leave you with this. What are those things you say to yourself in times of failure, challenge, or the unknown? Have you ever wondering where in the world that came from? If not, just let that thought roll around in your head for a bit. I bet something will pop up. And when it does, acknowledge it, forgive yourself (or that person) and move on. That's not who you are. No one on earth is an unique and wonderful as you are, thinking the thoughts and dreaming the dreams you dream. Self doubt has no room in your world because you are destined for greatness.