Good Things Take Time

 

Overcoming Everything that Destroyed my Confidence

Until a few years ago I didn’t really know what the word ‘Anxiety’ meant, I had never heard anybody say it. But now that I do- I know that it is something I have suffered with since being a young girl: never looking people in the eye; overthinking how to wear my hair to school because of how people would judge me for it. Thinking ‘Maybe I should straighten my hair today? Or curl my hair? How would people like me better? Surely people at school would like me better if I looked pretty?’. I was always worrying, always overthinking everything.

Most of my life I have been a little bit of an outsider- not all of the time- I definitely at points of my life had some great friends, but most in my younger age were tarnished (probably my characteristics). Junior school wasn’t so bad, although this was my most ‘Confident’ age. I really, really wanted to be a popstar, it is what i have always wanted. Any relation to me or family friend will always say they thought I would be the next ‘Big Thing’. I was fearless. Since the age of about 4 years old I was singing and dancing for everybody and anybody who would watch me. I made tickets from raffle books and made my parents and my Nan pay to enter their lounge EVERY NIGHT to watch ME. *laughing face*.

I was super confident. I just wanted to perform. My hair was cut like Posh Spice, in a short brunette bob- I went to bed every-night watching the Spice Girls movie, and if it wasn’t the Spice Girls it was the STEPS tape. Who had that? Remember the floating sofa? And that pasta that Claire used to make that she named ‘Pasta Alaclaira’ with the Heinz tomato soup?- I still make that!

And so, I guess because I was so fixated with this dream of mine, I seriously forced it upon my friends. All they really wanted to do was play on the field, but no, I printed out lyrics so we could all sing ‘Lady Marmalade’ at lunchtime. Even though I probably sang over every-bodies part in it *hands over eyes face*. I just knew what I wanted and I was determined to make it happen. My parents and my Nan were also extremely encouraging- all of my Birthday and Christmas presents were music related: Karaoke Machines; Cd Players; Albums; Concert tickets. At home was where I really could express myself- my parents loved watching my shows. This also became their dream for me.

You’re probably thinking, ‘How does this relate to anxiety?’.

But let me tell you, this dream and these characteristics at this age did me no favours. I was in constant battles with my friends who called me ‘Bossy and Annoying’. I didn’t really get invited to sleepovers and parties outside of school and I often had the feeling that the children’s mums didn’t like me either. This was my first kind of memory of feeling left out and alone. It wasn’t a nice feeling. This is when I really started losing my confidence and also when I developed an unhealthy relationship with food. I would go home and suppress my feelings by eating a million peanut butter sandwiches and all of the crappy food I could find in the cupboards.

I was always the biggest of all of my friends and I was so self conscious about it. When everybody was wearing cycle shorts and P.E tops I was wearing baggy football kits because I felt so fat. Boys at that age aren’t very nice and I can vividly remember there were a few instances where I would be the butt of the joke. Literally. ‘Who ate all the pie’s’, ‘fatty bum bum’ – this is what they sang to me. I would go home and cry, and my Mum and Dad would reassure me that there was nothing wrong with me, My dad would say ‘It’s just growing skin’ and that I was lovely just the way I was. They would try and help me with food and exercise but I just kept comfort eating- at this point it was a vicious circle. No boys ever fancied me, I never got a Valentines card- although my dad made the effort to send me one every year bless him.

My sisters are both petite like my mum, I am built more like my dad. So this was always at the top of my insecurities. I always wanted to be more like them, and constantly compared myself to my sisters. When we went on family holidays I would wear a t-shirt over my swimsuit when we were out by the pool. Everybody used to ask me ‘Why are you wearing a t-shirt in the pool?’ And I would blame it on my mum and say that she was making me wear it because I had sunburn on my shoulders! This makes me quite sad to think about really. Whilst other kids hadn’t a care in the world on their holibobs- I was worried people were looking at me thinking how fat I was.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moving on to High School, my weight wasn’t so noticeable then. Everybody had started growing boobs and bums and I didn’t look SO different, but I still carried the same feelings. I had no confidence, I would cling to any compliment- to any person who took notice of me. I became a massive walkover during these years. I always wanted to be a part of the ‘Popular Crew’. You know what girls are like at 11-14. Not very nice. One day I would have friends, the next day I would walk to sit with them at lunch time and they would all blank me or be really really nasty to me and call me names, and the boys joined in too. I had a really, really hard time at High School. I hated it, I used to ring my mum up and tell the school I felt ill and my mum would take me home. I hated it, I swear- I would have done anything never to go again. It’s really sad actually because most people I know now will talk about High School like the best time of their lives and how they wish they could go back, but for me it was torture. And I remember when I finished school all together and I used to drive past kids in the same uniform that I wore and I would be like omg, I don’t go there anymore, THANK GOD, and I would feel a huge relief that it was all over. Those years can be so tough for some people but I really feel like this age is what sets you up as a person. I always think, Being treated like that at school made me a good person. I would NEVER want anybody to feel the way that i did at that time in my life. It taught me how NOT to treat people.

After finishing High School, there was college. My parents didn’t want me to go to the local college because of its past reputation, and so I was sent to one where I didn’t know a single person. THIS WAS EVEN WORSE THAN HIGH SCHOOL. I walked around on break-times and lunchtimes on my own, trying to stand near people so I didn’t look like a total loser. My anxiety was at new levels, Girls were so cliquey, everybody had their friends and I had nobody. I hated it so much, and it wasn’t long until girls started to be horrible to me. I think they could smell my vulnerability a mile off. I went home crying every night BEGGING my parents to let me leave this school. This was the worst time of my life. I felt so alienated and so alone. One girl really had it in for me, and started getting people she knew in the year above to start being horrible to me too. And so I spent every lunchtime in isolation so I didn’t have to see anybody. It was awful, I would spend every lunchtime staring at 4 walls, waiting for the bell to ring so that I knew I was a little bit closer to going home. These girls then started bullying me when I was at home on Facebook- I can honestly say it was ruining my life. My mum and dad eventually gave in, after me begging and crying on the floor to them in their kitchen. I still remember it like it was yesterday. They told me they were moving me to my local school and, after that day, I didn’t go back. I was so relieved, I cannot even put into words how it felt knowing I wouldn’t have to go back there.

The college I moved to was fine. I knew people from other high schools that I socialised with outside of school and some of whom are still my closest friends- so that was fine. I was in a pretty unhealthy relationship at this point so I never really went to school. As soon as I got there, I would just leave. I was never bothered about school. Even when I was in class, I wasn’t listening. I wanted to be a pop-star and, although that would never happen because I was the most unconfident person in the whole wide world, I still had my heart set on it. What else would I do? I didn’t have good grades, I wasn’t going to get good grades… And I was DEFINITELY not doing sixth form- so university was never an option.

I left school at 16 and went to a musical theatre college. I was still in a very unhealthy relationship and i was just lazy-as-f. I couldn’t do the commute back and forth to Nottingham- so after 6 months- I gave up. My self esteem at this point was at an all time low. What would i do now? I tried X Factor- I thought that was the best option. My confidence always let me down. I tried all of the talent shows- nothing. This only added to my insecurities. By this point I was no longer interested in singing and I just gave up on everything. My dad gave me a job at his office- but i was too lazy. I took the piss really, I never did much. So, when I just gave up with that- I stayed at home all day doing nothing. It was horrible, I was watching all of my friends enjoying university- Many of them I lost contact with. I developed an even worse relationship with food- I was the biggest I have ever been and even at this point my mum and dad were telling me I needed to do something about my weight- but that would just make it even worse. This continued for a number of years until I eventually got out of the awful relationship I was in at the time and discovered those clothes in my Nans wardrobe, took a step outside of my comfort zone, and along came HOT!MESS.

 

Over the last 4 years- with all of the success- of course I began to believe in myself a lot more. I was nowhere near what you would call ‘confident’ but I was more content with who I was. My relationship with food wasn’t so bad- and my relationship with my family which had massively deteriorated over the last few years with me living like a slob at their house-was much better. Life was much better. Somewhere in between all of this I met Jack, the love of my life. The man who brought out the best of me in every way possible. Jack changed EVERYTHING for me. HOT!MESS was soaring, and I had found the man of my dreams. (I’m saying that like its past tense, but we’re still together!).

Living life behind an Instagram account- my own and the brands; HOT!MESS, BAZIIC, Babymilk- was great. I rarely had to see people, I worked in an office where I felt comfortable, I loved who I worked with. It was easy for me to never really go outside of my comfort zone.

Most people perceive me to be this ultra confident person (That’s obviously how I portray myself on social media). So when people meet me in person I think they are genuinely shocked to see that NO, I don’t love myself. No I’m not loud and lairy and outgoing. Whilst at HOT!MESS I was shy and perhaps stand offish as I was just extremely socially awkward. Having said this, I definitely developed some great skills whilst at HOT!MESS. However, one of them was NOT leadership. I am not good with authority and I HATED being a ‘Boss’ – In fact I wasn’t very good at it. I made other people do the scary bits because I just did not have the confidence to do it. HOT!MESS gave me everything. It gave me you guys- those of you who are reading this (most of you anyway), it gave me Jack ( I met him through the business) and it gave me self belief. I was just a 19 year old girl, a very sad one at that. And a girl with a dream to turn my life around. And look, I did it.

Now fast forward four months into my new business (the one I left HOT!MESS for) and I am a completely new person.

As I spoke about in New Beginnings, the decision to give up my company for a new venture that would involve me talking to lots of new people  was the scariest thing I have ever done.
But let me tell you now that leaving my comfort zone was truly the best thing I ever did. A little advise to anybody out there that may be stuck between a life changing decision right now: ‘Miracles happen the minute you step outside your comfort zone’. Always. Go. With. Your. Gut!

What’s the furthest outside of your comfort zone you’ve ever been? Let me know in the comments below.

Tayla Blue x

31 Comments

  1. October 29, 2017 / 4:29 pm

    Absolutely love this Tayla, admire you so much for your honesty

  2. October 29, 2017 / 4:34 pm

    This is honestly one of the best blog posts I’ve ever read.
    Firstly- kids are evil and the girls and boys at school to ever made you feel that shit about yourself are the ones who have nothing now.

    You’re 100% correct when you said the person you are at school and how you get treated is the person you become when you get older. (The bullies are still bullies and they moan and complain about life)
    Karma 😉 that’s all.

    You have to go through those hard times to be the person you are today. (Which I’m sure it’s a nicer and more motivated person than anyone of those people being horrible to you-either way that’s the past- (I do the exact same thing when I drive past my secondary school, I feel to burn it down) haha

    I’m sure you have many people around you now and the support you need.
    I also suffer with anxiety and sometimes talking to a stranger is sometimes better than talking to a best friend. So if you ever need me message me 🙂
    Any problem is never too small!
    People should help people through hard times, not make it worst for them.

    I enjoy reading your blog posts and looking at your Instagram. Your hard work makes me want to do better as a person. 🙂

    Have a great Sunday!

  3. Hollie
    October 29, 2017 / 5:29 pm

    Amazing! Good on you for achieving everything you have after everything you’ve been through and not giving up. A true inspiration to young women ❤️

  4. Lucy
    October 29, 2017 / 5:59 pm

    Wow.. this is so relatable in so many ways.. here I am thinking I’m the only person at 19 feeling the exact same way you did and felt like an outsider since high school! You are so inspiring Tayla. Love these blog posts ! Can’t wait to read the next one. 💗

  5. October 29, 2017 / 6:10 pm

    You made me cry all over again.

    I did laugh at the sunburn Tshirt😂 gets me every time.

    Love you xx

  6. Carla
    October 29, 2017 / 6:27 pm

    Amazing! Literally bought a tear to my eye! You really are putting it all out there and teaching other people to believe in themselves in more way than one! Such an inspiration xx

  7. Michele mitchell-jarvis
    October 29, 2017 / 6:56 pm

    I can remember you coming home crying from school as a boy said your hands were like pigs trotters, I marched round to his house to tell his parents , who were very understanding sent him round to apologise ( with a teddy) . You have the kindest heart ❤️Tayla and we love you unconditionally, your dad and I are very proud of the lady you have become . Mum & Dad xxx

  8. Sam
    October 29, 2017 / 7:36 pm

    Very relatable and honest. Keep shining, you are a truly beautiful girl, with bags of potential to do great things.

    Use that pain as power and go reach for the stars.

    Best of luck 💫💗

  9. Noelle
    October 29, 2017 / 7:49 pm

    I needed to read this ❤️

  10. Jodie
    October 29, 2017 / 8:00 pm

    Reading this and brought back all my horrible memories from school; knowing that I wasn’t the only person in the world to have to of put up with horrible ordeal that was school life.. I have also since had to over come anxiety, come out of my comfort zone, and shine!
    You really are an inspiration, and you should be so proud being able to put this all into writing because I can imagine it brought back a thousand memories you wish you could forget!
    Keep being you, such a role model for young girls of today!

    Jodie x

  11. Zoe
    October 29, 2017 / 8:02 pm

    Always admired u right from your early days….. you are amazing. Cried reading all of that and feel I went through some of your early journeys at school. ….plus now have a 9 year old who might be going through similar so opens my eyes. Hat off to your parents. … good role models also (and your dad is hot lol) I could carry on but u r a busy gorgeous girl from Leicester just like me xx

  12. Soph
    October 29, 2017 / 8:21 pm

    can relate to this toooo much! Currently at the ‘slob’ stage of me life!!

  13. Miss Jodz
    October 29, 2017 / 8:23 pm

    Your unreal bae – loving you 💖

  14. Maddison
    October 29, 2017 / 8:26 pm

    I 100% relate to this in every way but for totally different reasons.

    I have followed you since the very early hot mess(mesh) days and have always found you inspiring and was gutted when I heard you had left Hot Mess, but now you’re sharing your story I can completely understand why.

    Looking forward to reading more of what you have to share! M X ❤

  15. Jennifer
    October 29, 2017 / 8:50 pm

    I love this! I’m sure lots of people have been or are going through the same things as you did (me as well). Well done for writing about them, I can imagine it’s not easy. You are definitely an inspiration to young girls who are going through similar things.

    X

  16. Rachel
    October 29, 2017 / 10:27 pm

    Oh Tayla!

    I was exactly the same, I actually got emotional reading this (pathetic I know) but I 100% agree, it does make us better people. Love your honesty
    X

  17. Helen Boonham
    October 29, 2017 / 10:39 pm

    I love this and i love you!

    You have to go through the hard to get to the good i truly believe that and you’ve don’t so so so so well, don’t ever give up.

    You are such an inspiration and i’m so glad to be a part of something you love so much.

    To the future 🙂

    xxx

  18. October 29, 2017 / 10:47 pm

    Dear MilkMans child……

    Just re-read again…. although me and Pindy made out we dreaded those shows we secretly did enjoy them…..

    Love you Tails ❤️

  19. Tori
    October 30, 2017 / 2:46 am

    I can relate to every single part of that post and gives me some kind of comfort knowing I’m not the only one that has felt those feelings. I am extremely self conscious and hate going out of my comfort zone but reading this makes me feel like I can do it! Love how honest you are and inspires me how far you have came in your journey ❣️

  20. Jorgie
    October 30, 2017 / 11:30 am

    💕💕💕💕

  21. Laura
    October 30, 2017 / 9:34 pm

    Wow Tayla.

    I normally don’t like to comment publicly on blogs or instagram etc but I feel compelled say what an amazingly genuine, refreshing read your blog has been – I have related to every word. You’ve provided inspiration not only to me from this blog, but to many others looking through the comments. I hope you continue to do so and I wish you so well in your next adventure.

    ❤️

  22. Anonymous
    November 1, 2017 / 9:41 pm

    Reading your story was like reading my own.

    Similarly to you I was over confident in primary school and wanted a career in performing.. all of which didn’t go down too well in secondary school. Nobody liked me and they made my life hell. My confidence was completely shot down and so my career aspirations changed. Sixth form came along and by this point I had a few good friends, but next thing you know a boy comes along and drives a wedge between me and them. They all fall out with me and the boy ends up siding with them, and everybody is turned against me with their mission to make my life hell. I was completely isolated and doing anything I could to stay out of their way. By this point I was at the very bottom of feeling low, willing to even take my own life if it really had to come to it. Thankfully that never came because I met the love of my life, a boy from my childhood who I’d always fancied and he completely swept me off my feet. He gave me a reason to smile and a reason to live and I thank him every day for finding me when I was at my lowest and making me feel like I was on top of the world. I’d already made the decision to move away for uni at the hope of a fresh start. We tried the long distance relationship and although it was hard at times we got through it. I didn’t party or live the typical student lifestyle and I missed home, but I stuck with it and studied my butt off. I graduated a few years ago and a few months later found myself in a job that had barely anything to do with my degree but gave it a shot anyway. Some years later I’m still in that job and I LOVE IT. My boss has confidence in me and helps me grow mine every day! The love of my life is still the love of my life, remaining by my side nearly 7 Years later. I have a handful of friends I’ve picked up along my bumpy journey but that’s fine by me, I’m happy with the people I have in my life 🙂

    My life story over lol .. however sad I am to hear of your story and wish you didn’t have to go through it all, it’s sort of nice to know that I wasn’t the only one suffering! And to see where you are now and what you’ve become, I hope you’re completely proud of yourself! It takes a lot to go through what you have and look at you now! Happy, in love, successful and confidence growing day by day.

    Thank you for sharing your story! All the best for the future x

  23. Lys Davidson
    November 2, 2017 / 5:34 am

    A Great blog. Very inspirational Lady. You are in a Fantastic place now which you worked hard for. Enjoy your New Journey. 💕

  24. Amber
    November 2, 2017 / 10:54 am

    Thank you so much for this Blog post I found it extremely relatable and have found myself in many of the positions you describe above, it’s amazing to hear the authenticity of your story in a world of social media second lives I think it’s so easy for women to compare themselves to others online, it’s really inspiring to see the courage in this it touch home for me thank you again. 💖🙌🏼✨ sending love and positivity on your new business venture xxxx

    • taylablue
      November 3, 2017 / 11:03 am

      Thank-You Amber! I hope you will continue to read my blog posts and i thank-you from the bottom of my heart for such kind words xxxxxxx

  25. Fatima
    November 3, 2017 / 8:36 am

    I felt so sad and happy for you at the same time reading this! Honestly, I wish you nothing but the best and I hope your new business gives you as much self confidence, self belief and self growth. Your life experience is written for a reason and you’ve overcome many barriers and though I don’t know you personally…IM PROUD OF YOU TAYLA!

    Sending you lots of love,
    Fatima x

    • taylablue
      November 3, 2017 / 11:03 am

      Thank-you Fatima! Your words actually made my eyes water! xxxxxx

  26. November 3, 2017 / 3:32 pm

    Great blog post Tayla! I have been following you for so many years but it’s so good to finally hear more about you! You are a big inspiration of mine as
    I can truly relate. I hated school so much, dropped out of college and last year after my 18th birthday and realizing working in a bar isn’t cutting it for me, I moved out of my tiny home town in South East England and moved to Amsterdam to be a nanny ?! I have been here a year and it’s been great! But I still have no idea what I want to do and am now about to go on a ski season for 5 months in 2 weeks!

    Hopefully once all these crazy travelling experiences of mine are out the way and next year by the time I’m 20 and finished my season I will begin my ‘figure out career’ phase like you did. I have no qualifications other than GCSEs but would love to consider looking into working within your new venture when I get back in April.

    People really underestimate how hard it is being this age (19) and not at uni and constantly being asked what your doing etc and actually if you don’t have a ‘skill’ it’s so hard to decide or even start and can truly make you feel like you will never succeed.

    Thanks for the post, can’t wait to read some more and watch your new chapter in life develop! It’s so exciting I’m sure!

    P.s please follow me on Instagram! _georgiakennedy

    Georgia Kennedy xxxxxx

  27. November 4, 2017 / 12:38 am

    What a fantastic blog!
    We once used to be friends, it wasn’t the longest friendship and unfortunately we drifted apart. But I remember how funny, determined and passionate you were. I thought we were quite alike at the time. You definitely lacked confidence and belief in yourself, it is fantastic to see what you’ve achieved and where you’ve come. You should be so proud. Especially achieving success with your sisters as well!
    It’s amazing you sharing your story to help others. I have a younger sister who can relate to parts of your blog and I hope this inspires people like her to go on to be great people and do great things 👍🏼.

    Congratulations! xx

  28. Amber
    November 7, 2017 / 9:46 am

    Tayla I have loved every second of reading your blog. I can not wait for you to upload more stories about your journey. I have followed you for years on instagram I find you a massive inspiration and you make me want to step out my comfort zone and achieve the things I want to in life. I am going through a hard time at the moment and this has completely helped and uplifted me to keep following my dream and be the best I can be.

    Your story sounds very similar to mine as a teenager. I always say this moulds you as a person and will make you a stronger and more successful individual in the long run.

    Look forward to some more of your blog,
    Amber xx

  29. Jai
    November 13, 2017 / 1:05 pm

    I am like in shock! This is like reading about me. I have always said I never fit in, I feel like a square trying to fit into a circle. I wasn’t the smartest or prettiest at school, when I left early I started hair that evolved into Extensions I got really good at it but always felt not valued, bad relationships shattered my confidence, the isolation with work helped me cope with my anxiety. I opened a salon but hated being a boss the girls walked over me and outsiders jealousy took over, I shut the shop. But it was like for a reason I have my own product line now, I am trying to launch, all the reasearch I have done for years being rather anti social made me developed a vast knowledge in my field. But I am at a cross road, I am not fulfilled.. I need to burst my bubble and evolve more I am holding back on my happiness and growth beacause am scared. I am a strong believer that the hardships needed to happen to people like us to get to where we will be going in life. it’s for a reason so we can cope with much bigger obstacles. Thanks for sharing you are not alone. Jai @nirvanalengths

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