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Confidence Issue: The Bella Edit – Belinda Nash

I first met Belinda at a product launch and was immediately attracted to her energy and her ability to light up the entire room. From attending Fashion Week with her, numerous vinos and dress up sessions, she is always an amazing sound board and an incredible inspiration not only with her work ethic but her ability to love herself that I think we can all work on.

Who is Belinda Nash?

Hi! My name is Belinda, and I’m a freelance writer, blogger and a new fashion and beauty editor for Express mag on a mission to inspire guys, gals and everyone in between to be the best they can be. As for who I am I’m yet to uncover that mystery! I am always learning, growing and changing and I am more pleased every day with what I discover about myself. I genuinely love me… and it’s been a long time coming!!

What does confidence mean to you and how do you approach this in your everyday life?

This is an interesting one. Intrinsically, I think we like to belong and to help each other, so recently I joined six other women on a rape campaign here during Rape Awareness Week. Not only did the campaign make the Daily Mail in the UK, but I was able to talk on The Project, The Rock and a two hour session on Newstalk ZB to share my personal story about being raped, and more importantly, share my diagnosis of PTSD and how I worked through it with a therapist and a psychologist to come out the other end. Yay!

What empowers you as a woman?

So many things!! Most importantly, I love having achieved so well in education. I have a couple of degrees, a few diplomas, a post graduate diploma, and a Master of Philosophy degree with first class honours. I value intelligence and academia so much, particularly as for so many women in the world, getting an education remains out of their reach. The other important thing is I know that I am a kind person. I’m not mean, judgmental or hurtful to people. I don’t put people down, and I am not divisive in my character. If people dislike me, I know it’s their problem not mine because I know I haven’t been an arsehole to them! I mostly feel sorry for people who behave badly towards others. They lack the big picture.

What knocks your confidence down and how do you deal with that?

Duplicity. People who present one personality but are actually cruelly intentioned and manipulative deserve no place in my world. I have experienced this a few times, and it has battered my confidence. But I am extremely proud and happy to say that I am so very done with these people. I find them pointless and ridiculous, and their actions against me and opinions of me don’t matter one bit. It’s taken a lot of work to get here, but it makes me smile at how utterly pathetic they are (in the pathos sense, not in the I’m being mean, sense, so: “miserably inadequate”). It actually makes me laugh to myself now thinking that they think I care, or that I don’t know what game they’re playing. Laughter is the best medicine!

How has confidence helped with the running nzgirl and starting The Bella Edit?

It’s been amazing! I’ve had the opportunity to go to so many incredible events, and interview and meet some outstanding people, and this fuels me. Talented, authentic people totally spin my wheels, and I have met too many to mention! I need to put a rocket up The Bella Edit though, because I have so many ideas and well… not enough time. But in doing nzgirl, I have shared so much of myself and that in itself is empowering because I’ve had to really think about life in possibly more detail than others have had the opportunity to do. And through sharing my real self, I’ve allowed others to hopefully realise it’s OK to be imperfectly perfect (or is it perfectly imperfect?). It’s OK to be vulnerable, to be sensitive, to care and to not be cookie-cutter magazine model perfect.

What advice would you give our customers about self confidence and believing in themselves, embracing themselves for who they really are?

Believing in yourself is a must. I believe in my intelligence, my talent and my unique view of the world (and we all have this!!!). But I’ll be honest, embracing myself for who I really am is a double-edged sword. On one hand, I love being a bit weird, but on the other hand I sometimes think life would be so much easier being mainstream, yunno? But I need to be in a job that I feel passionate about and if I don’t, then I feel myself wither away. A cubicle sitting under fluoro lights and having meetings about meetings just isn’t me. But some days I just wish I could care less (and earn more)… but then I just wouldn’t be me. So for yourselves, just work out who you are, accept you and love you just the way you are, then anything else will be a bonus. And most importantly, surround yourself with the people who love and support you just the way you are – as completely and wonderfully you. In a world where we’re overloaded with picture perfect lives, remember that ultimately, all we want is to love and be loved, because that’s all that really matters.

What piece of clothing makes you feel confident to take on the world?

I LOVE leather jackets, especially biker jackets. They make me feel kickass! I have lost too many of them (grrrrr!) but I have replaced them and still have some oldies-but-goodies that I love, including an ‘80s biker jacket that is too retro for words. My new fave is from Urbancode London and it slaaaaays – you can see a tiny sneak peek here! I wish I could afford more of them and just wear jackets; jackets make an outfit in autumn and winter!

What women inspire you?

Oh wow… So many. Helen Clark for for being bold, brave and honest, and standing tall in a man’s world. I also want to be Iris Apfel when I grow up – that woman is a style bawse! Laura Daniel and Kimberley Crossman for being funny, intelligent, beautiful and all round badass. My mum for adopting me. My sister because she’s an A&E nurse and is just kickass, frickin amazing!!! My sister-in-laws for being so bloody kind and wise. My three best girlfriends who have been my rocks over these changing times – they know me better than I know myself and every day give me the courage to wake up and show up each day. And yep, I talk to them (almost) every day!! They’re my cheerleading crew and I wanna kiss their faces!!!!

What’s your favourite piece out of The Borrowed Collective and why?

Ashleigh has SUCH good taste, I just cannot!!! I love her Zimmerman and Talulah picks, and nothing beats a cute Jumpsuit, but this Mon Cheri Midi Dress is sooooo frickin’ adorable… I must have!!!

You can see Belinda pictured below in our Mon Cheri. 

Thanks lovely lady xx

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Confidence Issue: Monday Hustle – Lucy O’Connor

Since TBC was still Something Borrowed, Lucy O’Connor aka Monday Hustle came in to my life. She serves not as just a friend and super amazing support system, but as an inspiration and a good pick me up every Monday morning. Her hilarious and honest posts are too relatable at times, but also just what every girl hustler needs. This chick is the definition of hustle and bravery and we were lucky enough to get a little inside her head this week on what confidence means to her.

Who are you?

 

I’m Lucy, the blogger behind Monday Hustle! In July 2015, I quit my solid 9-5 in favour of.. Well, nothing!! But something told me I had to make a commitment and start to actively search for what it was that set my soul on fire. Ever since, I’ve been trying to gain experience in areas I feel passionate about, meaning that it’s been a tough 18 months of financial insecurity and lots of rejection!! However, there is no way I’d change any thing, and I finally feel like through Monday Hustle, I’ve been able to find my calling.
Monday Hustle is a space where people can feel confident in knowing they are capable of tackling life’s challenges, whatever might come at them next. I back you to back yourself, and soon, I’ll be offering life coaching services so I can help people learn from my experiences of living the Hustle at a more personal level.
PLUS, my friend Cam and I are going into business together on a second project which is super exciting! Even though my 2017 has been a roller-coaster ride due to a snapped Achilles.. I still get the feeling it’s gonna be an epic year.
What does confidence mean to you?
Confidence is a state of mind. It’s a work in progress. It’s first letting go of the fact that you can’t control everything, second valuing your worth and third living in a way that stays true to who you are and what impact you want to have on the world. Confidence doesn’t have to mean dressing like a boss, working as a CEO or always feeling positive. It’s understanding that, much like happiness, you can’t always exist in a 100% confident state. You have to work at it, and build resilience to the things that knock that confidence down. It’s feeling like what you are working towards is a worthy thing, and trying to bring that fact to mind when the doubt comes creeping in.
What empowers you as a women?
What empowers me as a human is embracing every aspect of myself, mind body soul. It’s knowing that there is no other person like me that has existed ever. It’s enjoying all of my talents and my strengths, and working on my weaknesses where applicable. It’s knowing that life is cumulative, and that every experience exists to teach us something whether it’s good or bad. We can either learn from the negative, or we can berate ourselves, but I feel empowered in knowing fundamentally that I hold the key to choose which option I’ll take.
What knocks your confidence down and how do you deal with that?
 
SO MANY THINGS knock my confidence, but the main one at the moment is the devil that is comparison. Last December, I snapped my Achilles. Everything was going so well before that, and I felt really on track – but then everything literally came to a halt! There were several complications with the tendon, and I spent a few weeks in hospital, which meant I had to tap out of Monday Hustle for a while to focus completely on recovery. When I entered back into the game, it felt as if everyone else had streaked ahead of me and were enjoying great successes while I was still stuck on crutches and questioning my life purpose. Of course, once I slipped into that mindset, I lost myself in the comparative void and my productivity went out the window.
I dealt with it by acknowledging the fact that I had just been through a horrible ordeal, and realized that now more than even, I needed to be kind to myself. I stopped looking at other people’s social media for a while so I could regain the focus on what I was doing. I reminded myself that I am the only me that exists, and that I am the only one who can do what I do in a me way – and that in itself propelled me forward.
When we are comparing ourselves to others, we act out of fear and out of desperation instead of joy and passion, and thus we lose sight of our own end goal. At the end of the day, you can’t control what anyone else does – you can only control what you do, and how you treat yourself – so you may as well join in the celebration, high five people for the successful payoffs they earn and get on with working toward a milestone of your own!
How has confidence helped with your journey as a hustler?
 
Without confidence, I’d still be in a 9-5 sales role, possibly earning a sh*tload of cash, but still feeling gravely unhappy and unfulfilled. I think there is a myth that confidence is innate, and we associate confidence with things like public speaking and being extroverted. However, I think confidence is getting up in the morning. It’s getting out the door. It’s showing up every day, even when you don’t feel like it. The funny thing is, I still don’t feel confident with what I’m doing or where I’m going, even though from the outside it might seem like I have it all together (occasionally!)!! I’m sitting in my flat having just heard the news that I’ll be on crutches for five more weeks, it’s raining outside and I am craving a bag of chips which I don’t have and still I still have doubts as to whether what I am doing is valuable.
But, it’s only because of my journey as a hustler that I now understand that confidence is a byproduct of action, not the other way round. I wasn’t feeling confident when I quit my job. I wasn’t feeling confident when I published my first blog post. It’s rare that I feel confident showing up at an event!! But, the more you get out of your comfort zone, the more you feel confident in knowing that whatever the outcome, whether it’s the one you hoped for a the one you really didn’t want, you’ll be able to handle it and move forward a stronger person.
What advice would you give our customers about self confidence and believing in themselves to achieve their dreams as you did with Monday Hustle?
 

The only advice I can give to you is to make like Nike and just do it. As above, confidence is a byproduct of action, and it’s only by doing that we become more confident in knowing more about who we are and what we are capable of. It’s a beautifully terrifying thing indeed – but also strangely comforting, and extremely motivating because at the end of the day? If you never try – you never know. And what’s better than surprising yourself?

 

What piece of clothing makes you feel confident to take on the world?

 
Normally, block heels make me feel pretty badass. There’s something really grounding about hearing those blocks hit the floor as you walk towards a scary meeting, presentation or stage! The rhythm of your movement is soothing and reassuring, and the sound of your own feet moving you forward gives you literal and metaphorical momentum. It says, ‘I’m here doing this right now, and I’m gonna do it bloody well. Clip, clop.’ Have I gone too deep on this?!

Clothing wise, it would have to be my vintage leather biker jacket. That thing is impenetrable! It’s an extra layer of armour when all else fails.

 

What women inspire you?

 
Maya Angelou. Sophia Amoruso. Iris Apfel. Brené Brown. Oprah. Any woman who is embracing everything it means to be authentically themselves, despite what the rule books might say. Women who are using their platforms to do good, and who remain open and vulnerable along the way. I would like to think that they would be proud of Monday Hustle and might feel empowered by some of my posts, too!
Thanks Lucy you incredible thang! You can see her pictured below in our Kate Dress at the Awesome Hustle event xxx

 

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Confidence Issue: RefinedBy – Tessa Stockdale

At TBC we love a good inspirational #GIRLBOSS. Tessa Stockdale from the blog RefinedBy is definitely one strong lady across all social media platforms that we look to for a little empowerment in our day.

We were lucky enough to have a chat to her about confidence and her key tips for success & motivation.

Who is Tessa Stockdale?

A twenty-one year old woman with a million things on the go. From fashion, to health, family, politics and friends – I couldn’t tell you a time where a new thought or idea isn’t running through my mind. I completed a Bachelor of Commerce at University of Auckland majoring in Commercial Law and Marketing. I am a fast-paced and mature woman with a headstrong perspective on life. I have a ‘take-no-shit’ attitude yet I can be the friendliest person you will meet. I work hard, make mistakes, succeed and learn. You’ll find me attempting not to die in one of Les Mills’ GRIT classes, or nestled in a cafe preparing and writing content for clients and my website, RefinedBy. On the weekends I’m out brunching, meeting friends or flying around the country to discover new places.

What does confidence mean to you?

Confidence to me is being happy with yourself. It is time that we enjoy who we are including our imperfections. Confidence goes beyond physical appearance, it is being proud of your achievements, your knowledge and your heritage. It isn’t an easy thing to grasp,  it takes time to build, but once you get it, you’ll never be happier.

What empowers you as a women?

The ability to live in a country and a society where I can be who I want to be, do what I want to do and be happy because of it. I am empowered by the many female role models I have in my life. Their strength and courage to make change has played a huge part in my confidence and empowerment. There are two very real issues in New Zealand that spark my passion and empowerment for change: the gender pay gap and our laws on abortion. I could expand on these, but we may be here for a while!

What knocks your confidence down and how do you deal with that?

The biggest thing that affects my confidence would be my anxiety. It’s time to break the stigma surrounding mental illness because the reality is, most of us, if not all of us will struggle with depression or anxiety at some stage in our lives. My anxiety tends to makes me worry about interactions with people and social situations. This is a very common thing people with anxiety face. The great thing is I am blessed to have amazing friends and family around me to help me take control of my anxiety. It’s important to be gentle with yourself and speak to people who can help you.

How has confidence helped with the start and running of RefinedBy?

I knew that I wanted to start my own business since I was a young girl. I am also lucky to be naturally confident, therefore the combination of the two really helped to begin RefinedBy. The deciding factor for me to create RefinedBy were my friends and family. They were incredibly supportive and encouraging to the point that it gave me all the confidence I needed to go out and make it a reality. The launch night was so nerve racking but our family, friends and invited media made it incredible. I guess no matter how confident you are by yourself, if you have the right people around you, you can end up feeling as though you can take on the world.

What advice would you give our customers about self confidence and believing in themselves?

Confidence comes with time. Don’t beat yourself up, because you’ll get there. Do the things in life you love and push the boundaries. Be gentle with yourself and be kind to others. There is so much bad shit going on in the world that we need to look after one another. Love yourself, love your neighbour and know that everyone is beautiful – we just don’t always see it. You are your biggest fan and if you don’t believe in yourself, how can anyone else?

What piece of clothing makes you feel confident to take on the world?

My go to outfit for confidence is a tailored blazer and pant paired with my Valentinos and a lick of lipstick – M.A.C Russian Red or Smashbox First Time. Do not underestimate the power of lipstick.

What women inspire you?

There are three groups of women who have inspired me and continue to inspire me in different aspects of my life.

As cliché as it is, my mother is my lifelong inspiration. She is the strongest, most kind-hearted and driven person I’ve had in my life. She simply is incredible. She raises five children, studies part time and works in a senior position at the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment. She gives her time as a volunteer at Waikato Hospital’s neonatal unit while continuing to be the ultimate role model to me and my siblings. She projects love and kindness to everyone and would help a stranger in a heart beat. If I can be half the person she is, I will be happy.

My creative inspiration comes from the amazing likeminded women all over the world. Sara Donaldson of Harper & Harley, Eleanor Pendleton of Gritty Pretty and Nicole Warne of Gary Pepper Girl. These women not only inspire me with the work they produce but their manner, hard work and ethic. They have succeeded and changed the industry because of their willingness to push the creative boundaries, take a step forward and make a change.

Last but not least, my beautiful friends. These girls give me happiness like no one else. I can’t name them all but without them, I would truly be lost. Their support, kindness and care throughout my life, and especially during the years of RefinedBy, is priceless. Those days where I needed a grammar check, an opinion, an Instagram photographer or a hug – they were there. I guess you could say that they are the most important people in my life.

What’s your favourite piece out of The Borrowed Collective and why?

The Bec & Bridge White Rock Set is an absolute favourite. Nothing screams empowerment and confidence like a tailored yet sophisticated pant and top combination. I would pair this with a pair of nude pumps and a red lip. A black long sleeve layered underneath would make it perfect for an autumn or winter event.