The elevator door opens to the sight of the cutest 5-year-old boy standing proud before me; he also happens to be my neighbour’s son. He is alone, going downstairs to meet his sister, so he stares at me and smiles. A true, genuine, no-care-in-the-world smile. Instinctively, I smile back. Before we arrive at our final destination (AKA the ground floor), I say “You’re so cute.”
Suddenly, that very smile turned upside down. “I’m not cute!” he exclaims. “I’m awesome!”
And he stomps right out of the elevator.
My mouth opens wide in pure amazement as I laugh. At 5 years old, this kid knows he’s awesome. He knows his worth and isn’t afraid to say so. My mind is blown, and my day certainly made. I have yet to meet an adult who would exclaim, without hesitation, the words, “I’m awesome.” I have yet to meet an adult with the same confidence and self-awareness as that little boy.
I wonder how long this confidence persist in his life. Long, I hope. But in a society of filtered images and status, how long can we maintain a true, raw, uncompromising portrait of ourselves?
I have curiously noticed one thing amongst multitude of beautiful, capable, and intelligent people. They all have in common the biggest weakness of our generation: insecurity and anxiety.
A mind clouded with insecurity is one we are all too familiar with, and if there’s one thing I learned, it’s that no one is immune. No amount of success, beauty, wealth or intelligence can change that. It is due to the inherently social nature of us humans that anxiety has been such a prominent aspect, or flaw I would say, of our society.
We grow up thinking the grass is greener on the other side until we realise it just holds a better filter.
We grow up insatiable, always looking for ways to become thinner, stronger, richer and powerful.
We grow believing we are not enough, with the need for constant validation.
I am no exception and guilty on all counts.
So let’s embrace our awesomeness for what it truly is — a true, unapologetic reflection of you, the masterpiece. Granted, art is subjective, but confidence remains universal.
Finding a way to be confident is a beyond desirable lifestyle and one everyone should strive for. Although it can sometimes be difficult to achieve, it is definitely worth it in the long run. Just think of the 5-year-old acknowledging his awesomeness, because if he can do it, so can you.