Boy! This was indeed a journey. I am blessed to have had the opportunity to compete in the OCB Battle for Tidewater Figure competition and actually placing in Debut and Novice really taught me some lessons.
Self-doubt has always been an issue for me. Others may believe in you, but when you don't believe in yourself your goals seems like nothing, but a dream. It was hard for me to see myself as a "legit" figure competitor. I continuously told my trainer/coach the one thing I was worried about the most was getting on stage and not looking as if I belonged there. It was so much on my mind - posing right, losing enough body weight, gaining & maintaining muscle... a lot!
The prep was harder for me than it probably should of been because of my self-doubt and my constant issues with the comparison trap. I had to get to the point where I was only comparing myself to myself. Even on show day, I got stuck in the comparison trap and had to hold back tears after prejudging. I was always told that it's not a good sign if you get moved to the end of row and this happened to me in all three of the divisions I was competing in. My trainer even stated that she saw I gave up on stage. DON'T BE ME! No matter what how bad things may seem, the outcome can turn around to be in your favor. I'm a living witness to that.
The level I reached didn't happen overnight. It took dedication, consistency, hard work, tears, some pain, and a mountain of insecurities. This shaped me and allowed me to grow. You will have to go through something to get to where you want to be. There is no way to avoid it. However, if you continue to push through, your vision will become clear and you will be at peace with your path even if that peace only lasts for a few seconds... that is enough to keep you going... that is mustard seed faith.
So, keep minding your business, praying, building, and growing. Do the very thing you doubt you can do and overcome self-doubt. You got this!