I think I have spent way too much effort trying to impress….someone. I am not even sure who exactly. I just know there has been a subtle undercurrent of feeling I need to prove myself that makes me anxious to do better, be better all the time.
This hasn’t manifested as a strong lack of self confidence or low self esteem that has limited my ability to stand up for myself or left me unwilling to try new things or step out of my comfort zone.
Indeed I have probably challenged myself a lot more than many people I know.
But there has been a slow awakening over the past couple of years in which I my perfectionist driven anxiety has some roots in the need to impress. The need to prove I am worthy. Again, I am not clear on who I am trying to prove this too. Parents? Men? Everyone?
I don’t think this has ever led to me totally casting aside my values or compromising myself significantly but I do think there has been a lot of anxiety generated from this. Needing to impress puts a lot of pressure on a gal.
I am aware how often I subtly vary my personality or style to impress, trying to act in a way that I thought would make me look cool. Then in the middle of my fake coolness I would realise that I actually the the person I was trying to impress was an idiot – Why the hell did I care what they thought of me??
Our culture breeds a need to impress through instant comparison and competition and a sense of win or lose. Young girls start to compare and think they are not good enough from a very young age. Magazines, TV and social media subtly and not so subtly tell them they are not pretty enough or skinny enough or sexy enough. That they need to change who they are.
Really there is no-one you need to impress. Hmm I take that back. Yes you may need to impress a boss or university or someone that you have the skills for a job or study. But that is about what you do not who you are. You never have to impress people with who you are. That will always end with you modifying your personality or risking your values. Different people will be impressed by different things so you will be flipping and flopping until you lose touch with who you truly are.
Who are you trying to impress?
Now stop it!!