You don’t give yourself enough credit

Posted on: March 21, 2013

I am, in my own opinion, a pretty bad ass chick.

But like everyone… I have PLENTY of doubts and worries. And they span the spectrum of life – from thinking I’m not pretty enough to thinking I’m not smart enough to thinking I’m not strong enough to thinking I’m not worthy enough of some guy… and it sucks. I annoy myself when I spin in this cycle of unsurity.

But, I’ve been lucky that I’ve somehow always had someone around to remind me that none of that is true.

When I first started working, I had a statistician who I worked with super closely. He was my mentor and he was one of those older true Southern-gentleman type of guys who could convey how absolutely stupid he thought you were with just a few looks.

The first task he ever gave me was to review 100 pages of code, find a variable that wasn’t working right, and fix it. No help, no hand-holding, literally he emailed me the code, with a brief explanation of the problem and said: “Get this back to me after it’s working.”

I think he thought this would break me…it was most definitely a test. But I passed with flying colors – I fixed it in about 2 days, got it back to him, and have been on his good side ever since. A few months later, I was working on another project with him and just couldn’t get my code working the way I wanted. I was in the cycle of writing and re-writing and confusing myself.

I went to him to ask what he would do, and when he told me his answer, I said in the most exasperated voice:

“ARGH! That’s what I did the first time and I wasn’t positive I was right, so I changed it.”

And he looked straight at me and said:

“You don’t give yourself enough credit. You are smart. Why do you doubt what you do??”

And since then… I never have. I really believe that I’m smart and will get it right, because I know what I’m doing.

And I owe a lot to him for those words that he probably doesn’t even remember saying to me, because to this day, it affects me and how I work. I know I’m the best at what I do and whoever hires me is lucky to have me… and if they don’t feel that way, then fine – I’ll look elsewhere. But I’ve learned to not let the negatives at work get me down, because I’ve consistently impressed people who are damn good at their jobs and whose opinions matter to me.

When I was in Scotland with British, we were laying in bed, my head on his chest. He was playing with my hair and mentioned how much he liked it – and I said, “Yeah, but it’s so boring and black.”

And he goes,

“It’s not boring and you’ve got highlights of natural color – red, brown, silver. It’s so pretty. You don’t give yourself enough credit for being interesting.”

Ok, he could’ve totally left out the silver bit but still, the sentiment was amazingly sweet. And he’s right. I am interesting!

Why do I, and most women, brush off the compliments we get in life? Why do we downplay our beauty, in whatever form it may be in?

And then, last night, at the gym, my trainer said:

“Ok, you’re gonna pull this boxing bag down the stairs and then back up, 3 times, with leg lifts in between.”

That started my whining:

“Whhhhhhhhhyyyyyyy?!!? Why are you trying to kill me? What if I fall? I can’t do this. I can’t.”

He said:

“You won’t fall. I’ll be right behind you anyway – but you won’t fall.”

So I did it the first time – and surprised myself that I could. And when I got back up the stairs, he just looked at me and smiled and said:

“You don’t give yourself enough credit. You are stronger than you think.”

I’ve been out of sorts this week, probably because things with “The Bod” are pretty much over (haven’t heard from him since our hike), but last night, my trainer reminded me that I am strong.

And that reminded me of every other time I’ve had a man in my life tell me I’m better than I think am… and it’s awesome to be reminded of that, and I more than appreciate it because I know not everyone gets this affirmation.

So yeah… I don’t always give myself enough credit. But I’m trying to change that.



2 Responses to "You don’t give yourself enough credit"

Sorry to hear about you and The Bod being over, but just from the things you’ve written, he seemed more fling material, anyway, and kind of a man-child with his activities. It didn’t seem like he intellectually stimulated you very much… to stay with the theme, you’re better than that. 🙂

Thanks!!!! Totally made my night to read that 🙂 And man-child made me giggle. A LOT. 🙂

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