“Confidence Doesn’t Have To Come In High Heels”

If I showed you a picture of me as a young teenager, you probably wouldn’t even recognize it as me. At 13, I was a tomboy with braided pigtails, acne and braces. I wasn’t popular, good looking or fashionable. I certainly wouldn’t have been described as self-confident or successful.

Ok ok…I’m not too proud to show you a picture… this is me at the age of 13! Whew……

But thankfuugly duckling tiffanylly times change. We meet people who influence our lives and shape our future. For me, that woman was “Miss Rita.” She influenced thousands of young girls and boys over the years as the owner & instructor of “Total Image Modeling & Talent Studio.”

Miss Rita (who is still a very important part of my life still today) taught me how to walk, talk, apply makeup and sit like a lady. As the owner of a “finishing school” she even taught me to set the table and write thank you notes. And she taught me to believe in myself.

I am fortunate that I had someone like Miss Rita in my life growing up. My parents and I were very close (still are) but what teenager wants to listen to their parents?  So I listened to Miss Rita. And because of her, I learned how to walk in high heels. But I also learned how to be the well-spoken, self-confident woman you know today. And that had nothing to do with the high heels!

Over the years, Miss Rita continued to be there for me – when I went on to compete for Miss South Carolina, get married, get divorced, and even move away from the comfort of “home.”  Today, I credit her for not only my style, but more importantly my confidence.

Which led me to think…how have I followed in her footsteps? Have I been a mentor or positive influence on the future leaders of our community and world? Have I given back/paid it forward/made a difference? Have you? Who influenced you as you were growing, developing and becoming a person of influence? And have you thanked him or her lately?

If you feel like confidence is an area where you are lacking, it’s not too late to develop it. My confidence doesn’t come from my high heels, even though I have A LOT of them!!  It comes from within. I was lucky enough to learn that about 30 years ago from a very special lady. But it’s never too late to learn that lesson.

Who in your circle can you look to for help in developing your self-confidence? If you don’t have an answer to that, allow me to be that person for you! I’m here for you!

Self-confidence has nothing to do with your net worth, your job or your position in the community. We all have feelings of inadequacy sometimes (me more often times than not). But it has everything to do with feelings of respect, self-worth and accomplishment. And we all deserve that – especially you!

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