Insecurity: for the shy who don’t want to be shy
People who have known me since I was a kid, have seen how shy I used to be.
Nowadays, many find that hard to imagine.
I don't know why—apparently, I come across as a confident woman.
But for as long as I can remember, I have been that kid in class who didn't want to be picked—afraid to blush or be in the center of attention. The one who thrived well among her friends but shut down in a larger group.
And not only as a kid.
In my professional life, during meetings, I had something to say but didn't speak up—unsure of when the right time was and if it would actually contribute something.
Afraid to stand in front of groups—who did I think I was? Lecturing others about a certain topic. Was I the expert?
I remember a specific moment in high school—call it a reality check—when someone told me right in my face that she didn't like me. I remember thinking, how is that possible? I've always been nice to you?!
It's events like this and the things I told myself, that shaped my self-esteem. Somehow, I was good at noticing what I did poorly or what I lacked.
No wonder I started to have low self-esteem.
No wonder I believed that I would just always be the shy person.
It's what I told myself.
And although I think shyness isn't bad in itself, the lack of confidence is.
God did not create me to be ashamed or insecure about myself. He did not call me to question and doubt the things I do, certainly not when they're grounded in Him.
But I let my insecurity lead me for the longest time.
It isn't just a light you can switch off.
It's something you need healing from and new ways of thinking to not fall for it again.
How did I go about it?
The process started, when I had yet another setback in my business (losing a retainer client).
I felt defeated and wanted to cry but kept it together—barely—and prayed to God for a solution. That evening, I read a specific chapter in a book (The Power of Focus, for my LeaderImpact group), which gave me a burning desire inside, fighting to come out.
It yelled: I want to build resilience!
I don't want to be beaten down by a series of setbacks. I want to bounce back, let it slide off my back, and become better at what I do.
I want to be confident—to believe in myself and get rid of the impact insecurity is having on my life… forever!
That moment was a defining turning point.
I realized that I am 33 years old and still battle with self-esteem and insecurity.
Now you might be 40 years old, or 50, perhaps 70, 23, or 17… It doesn't matter.
What does is that you draw a line at some point.
You turn to your Creator and let Him know that you are ready to be defined by what He tells you and not what rubbish you think of yourself or the enemy whispers into your life!
I drew the line.
I wanted change.
I wanted to get rid of the shy kid.
The unconfident solopreneur.
The irritable wife.
I wanted to speak up.
To stand above the opinions of others.
To get rid of the influence of modern understandings.
And to only live from a deep understanding of my identity.
To tackle my insecurity as a Christian, I needed to turn to the Word and started reading passages about what God says: about identity, His love, and His purpose for me.
I opened my Bible app, searched for all the Bible plans about insecurity I could find, and sorted out which ones I wanted to read.
Right now, I'm in the process of going through them and jotting down anything that resonates with me. I am collecting verse after verse that proclaims how loved I am and how nothing else matters than the great gift of grace.
That is going to be my foundation.
I need reminders about that every day. Which is why I read about it every single day.
Does it help?
→ I'm doing tasks I would normally be scared of doing
→ I'm writing this blog which is a stretch for me (to be vulnerable and open about this process)
→ I'm exposing elements in my life that I (still) put too much security into, like money
It's never easy, dealing with things from the past. Getting to know why I behave or think in a certain way.
It's peeling back every layer until I get to the core:
The raw and pure version of me.
The one that was wonderfully made (Psalm 139) and destined to be here.
I love the process even though it's challenging and hard sometimes, but it brings me closer to my Maker and that's what I long for in my heart.
If you are a person who deals with insecurity too, then tag along on this ride.
I will close this blog by sharing some verses that have spoken to me.
Read them and see if they mean something to you as well.
Oh, and if you're more of a songs-person → Jireh.
I sing it out loud!
Ephesians 1:4-6 (NIV)
4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.
Romans 8:31 (NIV)
31 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
Matthew 10:29-31 (NIV)
29 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father's care. 30 And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 So don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
1 Samuel 16:7 (NIV)
7 But the Lord said to Samuel, "Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart."