I met a friend for lunch yesterday at McAlister's Deli. We were co-workers before she took a position in another city and I miss seeing her every day. We hadn't gotten together since around Christmas, so it was great to catch up in that way that emails and text messages can't.
While we were there I saw a friend from school days and Girl Scout days who came over for a quick hug and hello. Then I saw one of the few famous people I know, well sort of know. Her name is Emily Freeman. She's an author and speaker that I've read (I was in a pre-release reader group for her last book, Simply Tuesday) and heard speak at a women's conference. My first thought was, wow, that's Emily! I didn't see who she was with, but as she was sitting down she turned my way and waved. She waved at me! I smiled and waved back as she set down. Wait, what if she wasn't waving at me? The line to the counter was behind me, what if she was waving at someone to let them know where she had sat down? I turned back to my lunch date, who made a comment about me knowing everyone in the restaurant. I laughed and said "just today" and we went on to have a great hour together.
My daughter (who is 17) has recently been talking about the importance of confidence to pull off some things - like wearing red lipstick and high-waisted bikinis. She has stated that it's not so much coloring (for the lipstick) or having the perfect body (for the bikini) as much as it is having the confidence within to pull it off (she has that).
What does that have to do with Emily? Well, it's made me ponder the importance of inner confidence. Now, lest you think I'm suffering from an inferiority complex and feeling down on myself - rest assured I am not. I am simply aware that my first instinct is to think "not me", to assume that those I regard as more than (more educated, more successful, more fit, more attractive, more cultured, etc.) would be unlikely to remember or recognize me unless we have some sort of regular interactive relationship. I know this is not true, yet it is still my first thought.
I've been dealing with this for as long as I can remember and what I've learned is that it is the second thought that moves you forward. Don't let the first thought dictate action, wait for the second thought. Confidence comes with experience, a good support network, and becoming comfortable in your own skin. Confidence sometimes ebbs and flows, that's called life. I will always have to deal with that first thought, but I've learned to wait for the second thought.
I don't know if Emily saw me yesterday. I don't know if she was waving at me or someone else. I'd like to think she did, but if not, that's okay - maybe next time!