This article has been continued from Part 1: Are you actually bottom tier?
The mainstream advice you keep hearing is “don’t be insecure” or “just be yourself” and “love yourself”, and while they have a point – from an execution point of view – this ‘advice’ is completely useless.
It’s kind of like the saying “when in China, speak Chinese”. It makes sense, but it doesn’t teach you how to speak Chinese.
A lot of people keep hearing the “don’t be insecure” line (especially with all the Facebook style images telling you to ‘accept yourself’) and assume that being insecure is entirely abnormal.
Firstly – there’s nothing wrong with being insecure.
Everyone, EVERYONE is insecure about something or the other.
Lots of jaw-dropping hot women are insecure about their looks.
Lots of very muscular men are insecure about their masculinity.
There’s nothing abnormal with having some levels of insecurity – it’s just how humans are.
And no, you can’t get out of insecurity by hearing “just stop being insecure”.
You cannot rationalize insecurity away.
There’s no amount of logic and reason that you can use that will help you get rid of a lot of insecurity.
It just doesn’t work like that.
The easiest (and the most common) way to get rid of insecurity is through validation.
Insecurity comes from outside sources.
It could be that people called you ugly or fat so you’re insecure about your looks, or that people said that you have a weird voice, so you’re insecure about how you sound, or you spent your teens watching TV and messing up your “baseline” expectations of how things should be, maybe people laughed at you, etc.
In either case, it seeped in from outside.
Unless you go the “full detachment from the material” or the Buddha route (not recommended) – your way of getting rid of insecurity will be from outside sources as well.
Think of insecurity as a sign that something needs improvement.
Insecurity is a symptom that something is not up to par.
It could be your looks, or it could be your weight, or your voice or whatever.
(We’ll use looks as an example for the rest of the article because it’s the most common one)
It’s your mind telling you – FUCK YOU, FIX THIS.
It’s motivation in disguise.
We’ll use insecurity to guide our spiral upwards.
It starts with admitting that you don’t feel up to par.
Don’t let your ego get in the way.
Understand what it is that makes you feel afraid to do or say something – and then create a plan to target the root cause of the problem.
Okay, so whether it’s true or not, I think I could look better.
- Join a gym to fix my weight and lose the bloat.
- Start eating healthier to accelerate #1
- Regularly use a moisturizer to make my skin look nice and glowy
- Supplement with vitamin E to help with skin quality
- Get rid of acne
- Get a quality haircut and groom my beard
[Note that we won’t be focusing on masking the problem (e.g., using makeup). We’ll focus on actually solving the problem. Things that hide the problem instead of solving it end up making the problem worse in the long run.]
Use the feeling of insecurity to push yourself to get what you want.
And then keep doing that for one year.
You can completely change your life in just one year.
You’ll find that as you drop weight (especially around your face) – you become more handsome.
As your jawline becomes sharper and more defined, you look more masculine (compounded with the fact that you’ve put on some muscle, we’re looking at a night and day difference).
Your posture is different, and so is your presentation.
In 1 year, you’re a changed man.
People will start to notice the change.
People everywhere tell you that you’re losing weight and looking better (you get more motivation and starting to become less insecure).
You find that women are checking you out and want to interact with you more (you’re dropping insecurity day by day).
You find men respecting you more. (finally getting there!)
And then you’ll come to a point where from all outside metrics – you’re great.
You look great/above average, you’re fitter than 95% of people, people want you or want to be you.
But make no mistake – you won’t be free of insecurity at that point.
Sure, you’d have removed a lot of it – but you’ll still have quite a bit of it.
It takes a period of time (usually another year) for you to fully actualize that you’re doing fine and even better than most.
You’ll get a lot of validation that you’re great from outside before you actually believe it.
That’s a part of the journey.
The good thing about insecurity is that it helps you take action.
It helps you stay the course. It takes you above and beyond.
Insecurity is a marker telling you what you need to work on AND it acts as fuel to help you make the journey.
People who are comfortable with fatness quit the gym after two weeks every January.
Insecure people don’t. Insecure people latch on for dear life. It takes some insecurity to stick with the routine until you start seeing change.
And all it takes is 1 – 2 years for you to completely overhaul your life.
When I was in school, I got heavily bullied. Not physically beaten, but psychologically – I was an outcast. The bottom of the bottom tier.
No girl would talk to me and no man would respect me.
Everyone had all these friends they would talk to all the time, but I had no real friends. I’d see them having fun, and I squarely concluded that there’s something wrong with me and I’m worthless.
I had no strength and manliness. I was a complete pushover.
I was hugely insecure and I fully believed that I was an ugly, worthless kid.
School thoroughly destroyed my confidence.
I felt I was unworthy of attraction and respect.
I was 15 years old that that point.
Thankfully school ends at 10th grade in India, and from 11th grade and onward – it’s college.
I go to my new college and quickly notice that my new peers aren’t treating me like shit – how people used to back in school.
Sure, I was physically not up to par, but definitely not an outcast.
(It’s funny how bullying works. If you’re at the bottom, low IQ people will kick you down even more because it gives them more respect in their own circles)
So this was the first sign I had that I wasn’t completely shit.
11th grade was easy, and I didn’t feel a lot of pressure to study.
(In India, no matter which college you go to, the syllabus is decided by the education department and is the same for everyone. So the same thing is taught to the dumbest students in the worst colleges as to the smartest students in the best colleges. This makes college a breeze for intelligent students.)
And because I didn’t really need to study – I had a lot of time.
I joined a gym.
I was weak. As a 16-year-old, I couldn’t do a single push up. In fact, it’d take me a month or so to be able to do 3 – 4 push-ups without completely dropping.
But within two months, I could see a difference in my body. We had our midterm break, and after spending 3 – 4 months in the gym, the college reopened, and people were in awe.
Everyone could see the difference now. People were asking me if I had joined a gym.
(I’d hit puberty and grown much taller too. It was a stroke of luck that I started training at the time of my life when I had the testosterone levels that only puberty can provide.)
This gave me a huge confidence boost.
My body language, my posture, and even my body structure were completely different.
I began to realize that I’m capable of looking good.
And that motivated me to spend even more time in the gym. I’d work out for 2 – 3 hours a day (a part of which involved talking and cardio).
I was still eating junk (I was still a college kid), but I had started to make improvements to my diet as well.
For two years (11th and 12th grade), my schedule was: wake up, go to college, go to the gym, and then watch TV shows for the rest of the day.
I wasn’t consistent and would skip workouts when I felt like it – but at least I was going.
Sure, the TV was a waste of time, but at that point, even those shows I watched helped me gain social acceptance. (Because knowing everything about TV characters is cool in 11th grade).
Within 1 – 1.5 years, I had transformed myself form one of the weakest kids in the class to someone with visible muscles. I was easily in the top 20% physically, among those my age.
Both men and women wanted to be seen with me.
Everyone respected me more.
I was both good looking and intelligent.
I was becoming the popular kid I always wanted to become.
Why am I telling you this?
Because even when I suddenly had so much going for me, I was still insecure.
It took me another year or two of receiving compliments on my appearance and lots of attention and respect from my peers that I actually believed that I was good looking.
I had already crossed the above-average marker before I finally got rid of the last bits of insecurity that I had.
This is going to happen to you as well.
You’ll have to become great before you feel great.
It will take you a period of time before you’re comfortable with yourself. And it’s going to be long after you reach a point where you’re doing great.
I did not have a random event that made me feel secure.
My insecurities were chipped away from me, piece by piece, with every positive interaction I had, with every compliment I received, with every girl I caught staring at me.
It was replaced with pride.
I became more confident every time someone pointed out how strong I looked, or every time I found out a girl had a crush on me, and every time one of the football players asked me for fitness advice.
It took me a long time to mentally get there AFTER I had physically gotten there.
Over the years, I’d continue the trend.
I kept working on myself.
And every year, the difference would show.
Today, I’m one of the most secure people there are.
I’m fit, healthy, good looking, debt free, financially independent, well read, well connected – and I have more influence than 99.99% of people (I’m reaching tens of thousands of people via this blog and Twitter).
That is the true power of insecurity.
Had I had a regular schooling experience, I would not have been heavily insecure, I’d have never joined the gym, I’d probably be working a job I hate just like every other “well rounded” chump in the world.
This website would not have been in existence, that’s for sure.
No one is fully secure, especially in the beginning. Insecurity is motivation that lost its way.
You can COMPLETELY OVERHAUL your life in 1 – 2 years.
Hell, you should be overhauling your life every year.
Insecurity will take you further than any “NEVER GIVE UP” Facebook image every can. It’s powerful fuel to help you get started, and keep at it long after you’ve actually “gotten there”.
At one point, you’ll run out of insecurity, and you’ll look back and realize its real value.
You will have to use a different motivator to keep you on the path (usually pleasure/money), and it won’t work nearly as well as insecurity.
Everyone is insecure, but few will admit it.
And those who don’t admit it will waste it.
They’ll live a normal life, a good life even, but never a great life.
Just another non-remarkable person. Forgettable. Ordinary.
Admit to yourself that you feel short of noteworthy.
You don’t have to announce it to the world, but you have to know it.
Then make a plan and see it through.
Channel insecurity to push you forward.
See where it takes you in 1 year.
Hope this helps,