"Is working at Target worth getting a college degree for?"
"So, you're short-circuiting your writing career to work at Target?"
I've received these comments, and many similar ones, from a particular church member who feels called to change my misguided ways with unsolicited advice after church every Sunday.
Last Sunday, my blood began to boil as he went on about how becoming addicted to a regular paycheck would ruin my writing career, how I'd start telling myself, "I'll write tomorrow," and tomorrow would never come. I gritted my teeth and didn't say a word.
But what bothers me more than this person's comments is the fact that I let them get to me. They ruined my entire day. In fact, two days later, they're still hovering over my head, a gray cloud of doubt and discouragement.
I want to scream: You don't even know me! Do you think this is easy for me?! Do you think this is my ideal?! When I dreamed about what I would be when I grew up and finished college, it wasn't about being a Target employee. This isn't what I planned for. In fact, moving to Arizona wasn't in my plan either. Or majoring in Technical Communication. Or getting married young. Or getting $20,000 of school debt from my spouse when I got married.
Do you think I don't realize that I look like a failure? I get it. I know what people think. But this is where I'm at. I have to make the best of it. I'm working a part time job in retail to add a little padding to our budget while I start my own business and figure out what I want to do with my life."
And you know, that's really not so bad. I really don't need to feel inferior about that. I certainly don't need to listen to people who want to make me feel inferior about it.
So why do I consent? Why do I consent to letting a random person who really doesn't know me at all speak into my life?
Because deep down, I think he's right.
Warning, this is about to get real.
I do feel like a failure. I don't believe I'm capable of achieving my dreams, or even, worthy.
Yet a part of me fights back. Something in me whispers, you were made for more.
I want confidence. Confidence that doesn't come from what job I have or what I can produce, but in who God made me. Confidence that no matter what happens, He has a plan for me and is working all things for good, even the things that seem like mistakes or detours to others...and myself.
Confidence that I am capable, and I have worth, because I'm His child and I am loved.
I don't have a set of formal resolutions this year. I have one word: Confidence.
Meredith Crawford from One Sheepish Girl
inspired me with her Blogging for Confidence
series. With the encouragement from her blog readers, she undertook a series of challenges, like taking herself on a date, wearing red lipstick, and knitting in public, to grow her confidence. This year, I'm going to follow suit with challenges of my own!
I have a few ideas that I'll share later. The areas I plan to focus on this year include:
- Confidence in relationships: taking initiative, saying "No," asking for what I need, not avoiding confrontation.
- Confidence in who God made me: my gifts, skills, and passions, being myself, feeling good about my body and appearance, doing work I enjoy without apology, and doing hard things that scare me.
I think this year's goals could take the rest of my life. But, I'm excited to see where I'll be at the end of 2013.
Thank you for joining me on this journey. I really can't thank you enough for the encouragement and love you show me through your comments, and even just through your presence here. Thank you for reading!
I'd love to know, what are your goals for this new year?