- Mental Health
Rebuild Confidence With a Project
So many times we are simply working through our day and something happens that deters our confidence. Maybe it was an odd comment from a co-worker on something you’re wearing. A look your mother-in-law gave you. Someone cut in front of you in line at a store. Whatever happens to be the trigger, involvement in an unrelated project—for yourself—can help you see the truth.
I love doing home projects, especially if it involves a ratty item that I can turn into something more magnificent. It’s empowering. This year has brought some challenging circumstances and admittedly my self-confidence took a hit. I decided I should find a project. Recently, I was able to carve out a desk space for myself at home. The space was a bit small and I really needed more storage. Venturing to the Good Will store I discovered a small end table. It was actually in pretty decent shape, a good size, not too big, not too small, and had a small drawer to hide things. Maybe even me.
I spent time staring at this piece and was finally able to come up with an idea as to what to do with it. Yes, even confidence in what I should do with an inanimate object was work. Regardless, I knew the project had to answer some basic needs:
- It had to be cheerful to look at. I had enough scowls from people. You know the type, the ego driven individuals who seem to want to suck your motivation out by their looks. Vampires!
- It had to remind me I was a capable person, one who could tackle a situation. This was a simple project but then again I really didn’t need an involved project to prove anything. Simplicity at its best.
- It had to be functional so when I used it I would be consistently reminded of the accomplishment … beyond the project itself.
Do you get it now? Okay, let’s get started. Let’s remake a small piece of furniture with an ultimate prize to enjoy in the end.
Paint of choice in color of choice. I used Americana Décor satin enamels in moss green, 8fl oz.
Polyurethane, water based clean up.
Screw driver to remove any hardware.
Rags or paper towels.
Sand paper, 220 grit works well for most projects.
Painter’s tape if needed.
And of course a piece of furniture in need of TLC.
Step by Step How To
Step 1: Remove any hardware, tape screws on the piece so they don’t escape from you.
Step 2: Sand all surfaces to remove any sheen. This can be done by hand, or if the piece is larger a hand sander is quite nice. You want to sand enough to rough up any previous shininess and will allow paint to adhere better. If the item was already painted, sanding the paint will smooth any rough areas not desired, but also remove any glossiness. And don’t get Hercules here. A light sanding is usually all that is necessary.
Step 3: With a damp rag wipe down all surfaces to remove dust generated by sanding. May have to do twice to be sure all dust is removed.
Step 3: If you are planning on doing a crackle finish, you can either use the wood as the base color or do a separate color. If using two colors, prime first, let dry at least an hour.
Step 4: Paint a base color, or if not using a base color, go straight to applying crackle medium. If using a base color, allow drying at least one hour, then apply crackle medium. Allow drying per package directions. This may be overnight, or 1-2 hours. Crackle mediums come in a variety of brands and some brands dry to a tacky finish. Again, check directions.
Note: if you desire to use white glue to create your crackle finish, apply a moderately thick coat on furniture. Then paint and while both glue and paint are still wet use a hair dryer to start drying. Don’t double brush the paint as this will thin glue beneath and interfere in how the surface cracks. The heat from the dryer will cause the glue underneath to shrink pulling on the paint and cracking it.
Step 5: Now paint your main color. Allow drying overnight if you have been working steps 1-4 in the same day. Allowing overnight drying gives several hours for all levels to bind and cure and become great friends.
Step 6: Apply two coats of polyurethane. On my project, I decided to decoupage on the top of the side table. Four coats of polyurethane were applied to the top to be sure decoupage design was well sealed and waterproof. Allow everything to dry thoroughly, not tacky to touch.
Step 7: When all is dry, reattach hardware and place where you can see your work easily. Relish in how well you did this project.
How do you feel now that you have finished such an undertaking? More confident, I hope. Let no one break down how wonderful you are. They can have their bad days, but the world is better for your involvement, and now, your skill at refurbishing a special piece.
Whenever I have a problem, I look to books to find answers. I realize self-help isn't always the best answer, but with limited time I like the idea of picking up a book whenever I have a moment for myself. Plus, I love to cozy up with a good read, sipping my favorite tea and solving a problem in the process.
Have you been feeling less than confident? Dr Aziz Gazipura PsyD, author of, The Art of Extraordinary Confidence: Your Ultimate Path to Love, Wealth, and Freedom, created a resource so anyone can up their confidence and self-esteem. Sometimes when I've read self-help books, I ended up returning them because I felt what was being discussed didn't fit my situation. From this book not all ideas have panned out, but many. have. I have since passed this book onto my sister who was suffering through a hostile job situation and it helped her too. She now has passed it on to a friend who also past it on to someone in her family.
Not having confidence can result from a variety of situations. Job loss, death of a loved one, failing at an important project. As humans, we tend to be hard on ourselves with unrealistic expectations for how our lives are supposed to be. Find a resource that assists in sorting out these erroneous thoughts and change your path. I now walk the yellow brick road and I hope you will be soon.
Confidence is the doorway to success in all areas of life. Whether you want to excel in your career, triple your income, create an amazing relationship, or just feel happy and satisfied with who you are, self-confidence is essential. In this inspiring and liberating book, Dr. Aziz slices through each obstacle on the path towards ever-increasing confidence.