I was never a person with many interests or hobbies; not because I didn’t want to pursue them, but because I was terrified of failing and being laughed at. So many times I thought something would be fun to do, tried it, wasn’t immediately good at it, and dropped it because I saw no point in doing something I wasn’t good at, it felt like I was wasting my time, I though I would never be as good as other people, and, most of all, I feared being judged by others.
I constantly compared myself to others; in my mind, to be successful at something, I had to be better than most people. I’ve always loved crafts and creative things in general, but I never pursued them because I was too worried about other people’s opinion of me. I wish I stopped caring about what other people think years ago. Pursuing my interests has brought so many positive aspects to my life: Mental sanity! A happier life! Less stress! Personal accomplishment! A more interesting personality!
In high school, college, and part of grad school I was so scared of failing that I focused all my efforts on studying, persuading myself that everything else was pointless. The truth, however, is that I was scared of trying something new and not being good at it; of seeing other people around me succeed and to not be able to keep up. During those years, I was also pretty unhappy, had a lot of insecurities, suffered from high functioning and social anxiety, didn’t have many friends, and didn’t have any hobbies.
I discovered so many aspects of myself through working on my mindset and trying to be a more positive and confident person. I realized that my insecurities, low self-esteem, negative outlook, fear of being made fun of had their roots in my childhood and, by working hard, it would be possible for me to change my outlook on life.
My biggest realization was that I am a reflection of my past experiences and the way I decide to deal with them. Even if your past was shit; even if you had to deal with many challenges and negative life events; even if you feel like you could never be a confident, cheerful, creative, positive person; you can. You can shape yourself however you like, as long as you’re willing to work on it and not give up.
That’s what I did. It took four years to break free from my extremely insecure past self; it took a lot of discipline, self-love, therapy, determination, hard work. It was a slow process, there were a lot of setbacks, there will always be, but I turned into a different person, a person that years ago I wished I were, but didn’t have the strength to become.
All this brought me to say fuck it to what other people think of me and start a few projects that I’ve dreamt of starting for years, including my YouTube channel: An Italian Overseas, where I share video-recipes and some Italian and American culture; and this blog: whatsfraupto, where I explore new hobbies and interests and write about my experience!
I hope you didn’t mind the more serious blog post; I will soon come up with more light-hearted and fun ones, but, at the same time, I think it’s important to share the life experiences that made me the person I am today and brought me here, almost insecurities-free!