Negative comments can hurt, especially if we aren’t feeling so confident. Listen to how I overcame negative comments and built my confidence with a mindset shift.
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Note: The podcast is not scripted and is transcribed using software. The transcript is nearly verbatim but may not be exact. It may include edits for ease of reading and/or minor grammatical errors.
Welcome to I Can, I Am, I Will. The podcast design to encourage you and help you build your confidence and self-empowerment. Today we’re going to talk about a situation in my life that change my life dramatically.
It helped me build my confidence, I am a different person. I want to share this experience with you to give you insight into how things can change. And also to give you a perspective that might help you to build your confidence and feel empowered.
For those of you who are new here my name is Lyndsey. Together with his podcast we talk about concepts that I used to build my confidence so that you can build yours.
Before we dive in make sure to hit that like and subscribe button. You can go to canamwill.com to find articles, transcripts of episodes, and also you can contact me there. I would love to hear from you and what you have to say about the podcast.
It Started With Hair
Tomorrow I am getting my haircut for the first time since August. Everything closed down because of covid last May. Then my hairdresser came to my house in August and cut my hair in my backyard.
Since then I’ve not had my hair cut. It is annoying m. I had it like a buzz cut and then now it’s down to my chin. My hair is very thick so it’s kind of like weighted down and just super uncomfortable.
I cannot wait to get it cut because I think it looks like a hot mess, and I’m constantly putting it in buns. This made me think of a time that I got my haircut and people had a very intense response to it.
My interpretation and reaction to their response was different than it previously would have been, because of all the work that I was doing. All this stuff that I was reading, all the philosophy and psychology, focusing on different things, changing my mindset. I not expecting a strong reaction. However, my response to the reaction, it showed me that I was on the right path. I was on the right direction, I was really building my confidence.
To give some background my hair was very long, I would sit on it. It was past my butt and sometimes I will be sleeping, and then I would like pull it, and then it would wake me up. It would get stuck in zippers. It will be uncomfortable while I was driving because I would be leaning on it, so I had to lean forward and pull on it.
I do boxing, so I had it in a ponytail, but then it would smack me in the face. So I wanted to get a cut. I go to get it cut, my hair dresser’s like, “wait.” He cut it a little bit. He’s said, “wait three months, if you really want to cut it all off then we’ll do it.”
Three months later I show up I’m like, “hey bro chop it off!” And I cut my hair to a pixie like Audrey Hepburn. I loved it, but it was also it was a little nerve wracking.
Related episode: Ep29: Build Confidence With a Wins List
External Comments Can Kill Confidence
When you do a new hairstyle, it can be nerve wracking. You can have a lack of confidence in your new due. I went to work the next day and I did have some positive responses. I also got some negative responses.
Someone I worked with, that I consider a friend, just he was not very empathetic in this situation, he told me, “don’t guys like girls with longer hair though?” And then I had another colleague that said to me, “well maybe you should’ve waited until you got a boyfriend before you cut your hair.”
That was just the beginning of the comments. The comments stung more because I didn’t feel so confident in my new my new style, my new look. So I will go out and people will come up to me and ask me about my sexuality. They would ask me if I was a lesbian because my hair was cut short.
I was waiting for the restrooms and someone said they couldn’t tell if I was a man or a woman. They couldn’t tell what bathroom I was waiting to go into. I said, “whatever one opens first. Provided that the men’s room is clean.”
And I was getting a lot of slack from people. I did get positive comments, and I did have supportive people, but the negative comments really hurt because I didn’t feel so confident. Even now as I’m talking about it I can feel an emotional response to it because they did really hurt. It’s not only that the comments that hurt, it was the fact that people thought that they could make the comments that hurt too. Because I wouldn’t make comments like that to someone.
Related article: Stoicism and the Trichotomy of Control: Why You Need to Know What It Is and How It Changed My Life!
Finding an Empowered Mindset
So just say it made me sad. Then one night I was sitting in this room—this exact room where I’m recording this right now. And I had, I don’t know what to call it, like an epiphany, a crossroads, I don’t know what I would call it. But I had this enlightened moment. I feel like it was everything was coming together.
Everything that I was working on kind of just came together. I thought to myself, “when I’m 80 years old,” and in my mind when I’m 80 years old I’m like imagining myself on a rocking chair like overlooking a field. And I thought, “when I’m 80 years old, will I be happy that I wore my hair how I wanted to wear my hair, or will I feel happy I keep my hair long because that’s what other people wanted?”
And then it was just something in my brain just like snapped. It connected. I was like, “wait a second why the fuck do people care so much about my hair?” Then it was just like…wait. And I was like, “Oh my God, that literally happened. People are calling me a man and they’re getting weird and upset and saying nasty comments to me because of my hair?!”
Related episode: Ep1: Start Building Confidence Today
Moving in a Confident Direction
Then I started feeling like people were obsessed with me, and I was like, “Oh my God, why is everyone so obsessed with me?!” And THEN I started feeling like I had all this power. Changing my hair elicit such a strong response from other people, what else can I do that’s going to create a strong response from other people?
I feel like just a simple act of cutting my hair is being like so impactful, and then I started wondering how am I not narcissistic. Because so many other people are focused on me and what I do. And then I started thinking how can I benefit from this?
And that was one of the first night since I cut my hair that I just fell asleep, that I had a great night sleep. Because after going out, and getting negatively criticized, and being told I look like a man and all this other stuff, it was really hard sometimes. I would come home and I would just be so sad. And that’s how I was able to change my perspective and my mindset.
Now I’m going to get my haircut tomorrow, and I told my friend. And I thought, “here we go. I know, I know my hair is a huge deal to everyone. I know they’re like sitting at home their life is like on pause waiting to see. Like seriously go live your life, my hair will be fine. Don’t worry.”
My friend decided that he was going to tell me his preference for how women wear their hair. He said he liked hair longer. I was like, “dude, great grow your hair longer. I’ll teach you how to braid it.”
Related article: The #1 Way to Build Confidence
Confidence in Every Area
What I want for you to get from this is that you cannot control what other people think. And you cannot control how other people see you. But you can control how you see yourself. If you want your hair, if you want long hair, do it! If you want to wear something—I mean provided you’re not wearing something inappropriate for like a work event or something.
But if you want to wear a certain outfit, or if you want to do a certain thing. If that’s going to make you happy then you do it! Because guess what? I love my short hair. I owned my short hair. I’ve rocked that short hair!
Once I started rocking it, I would go out and people will be like, “Oh my God, I love your hair!” And I’d be like, “I know, it’s amazing.” Now I’m growing it longer. I’m going to rock that too! And then when I decide to cut it, then I’m going to rock that too!
And guess what? When I’m older, if I start losing my hair—it will be a sad day, because I love my hair—but you know what? I’m gonna fucking rock that too! Why? Because I cannot control what other people think, but I can control how I see myself. How I see my body, and what I think about myself. And I think that I am a kind person. I am a compassionate person. I have an awesome person that anyone would be lucky to have in their life. And that’s all that really matters.
I feel like that just got really intense.
With that, we’re going to end with our “I” affirming statements. You can say them with me, you cannot. You can do whatever you would like because you are empowered. What makes you feel good? Are you ready?
Have a great day.
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