Why confidence is such an important part of NATALIJA ♡
We all have a story and if I’m honest, I’ve mostly hidden mine and the true purpose that drove me to begin NATALIJA the label.
If you ask me why, two words come to mind: judgement and vulnerability.
While I’ve kept my story to myself, it remains un-judged and unseen. But in thinking this, and with the fast approaching arrival of my second child, I have been reminded of the good that comes from speaking vulnerably with your community. And importantly, the value in stepping into my own self-confidence as a mother and a woman. To show that confidence grows, self-acceptance takes time (and is shaped by your experiences) and that true feelings of wholeness begin from within.
As you read my story, I ask you to reflect on times in your life where my experiences mirror your own and to have compassion for the courage that I’ve gathered to share this with you today.
Today, I am a woman who is loved, grateful and proud of who I am – but above all, empowered. If you had told me five years ago that I would feel this way, I wouldn’t have believed you. Not only did I not think I was deserving of an accomplished career and life, I also never believed I could ever make those things happen for myself.
When I started high school, I was slightly overweight. I was bullied and experienced body shaming because I didn’t fit in. By that I mean, I didn’t fit into the ‘thin’ or ‘beautiful’ category, and I didn’t fit into the clothes that were considered ‘cool’. Those years of my life, I was in constant fear of judgement. What others thought of me. What they thought of my clothes. Their opinions and hurtful comments about my weight. I went into my shell, disheartened, with my confidence completely snuffed out and turned to controlling my weight as a means out - with the hope to be accepted.
Those formative years influenced my early twenties as I continued to pressure myself to look a certain way and be a certain weight to ‘fit in’. I look back with some sadness for the younger Natalija and wish I could comfort her with what I know to be true now.
From the very beginning I was determined to create a business and brand that spoke to women’s confidence and the importance of cultivating it ( for yourself and other women). Those years taught me that confidence doesn’t come from your size, what you wear and what others think of you. Confidence comes from acknowledging that we are all different, and that there’s a beauty in that. Confidence comes from being in an uplifting environment, finding women who support you, feeling comfortable in your own skin.
This is why confidence is such an important part of NATALIJA, for in finding my own, I have blossomed as a woman, marvelled at my changing body and truly hope that all womankind can find this too.
Thank you for reading my story ♡