Ever since the Demi Lavato song came out a few years ago, every time I hear it I want to answer her rhetorical question.
So today, I'm going to.
The answer is - a lot, actually.
(First of all - to forewarn you - this isn't a post about parenting. Or Bradford. Or my own crazy darlings and some half-witted decision they recently made. So if you're here looking for more Mom Mantras or Toddler Tips - you won't find any goodies to add to your parenting basket.)
Now, the original question (and answer) - what's wrong with being confident?
Nothing. As long as you stay on the e-x-t-r-e-m-e-l-y thin line that is the definition of confidence.
And by extremely, I mean a fraying piece of thread. Picture typing a line... no not even a line - a line made up of dashes - across a page. In the smallest font size possible. 6pt, maybe. Also in the lightest font possible (no bold dashes here!) - that's your line.
And if you can tightrope walk that sucker with a smile on your face and great hair blowing just so - congrats. You are officially a confident person. Everyone will think so.
Fall to the left of it, even a smidge, and your confident air will be sucked away in a vortex. You must be a fraud, faking your silly smile of happiness. Rocking your messy bun and athleisure? Careful there, girl - one person's confident is another person's sloppy.
Remember - it is thin, this line you walk.
Lean to the right too far and now you've gone from confident to clown. It takes almost nothing to cross over from classy to trashy when you're confident. Boots too tall, heels too high, skirt too short, shirt too fitted (and don't even get me started with that V-neckline!) - sorry, it all screams "trying too hard" instead of happy in my own skin.
Also, is that a smile or the result of too much dermatology filling? One never can tell these days.
Oh and before you open your mouth to speak - fair warning, it isn't just appearance that will trash your newly found confidence like yesterday's news. True, confidence is sexy - but say it too forcefully or too loudly or too many times and it no longer falls in the confident file - now you're just bossy.
Heading to the gym? Be careful here too. Confident women work the gym circuit just so. Lifting heavy weights? Working the stairclimber until sweat is dripping off of you? Tsk, tsk Dearie - while you may have appeared confident when you walked in or when you started on that machine - now you're just a psycho.
I'll break down the rules...
1. No hollering/screaming/yelling - you sound crazy.
2. No tight fitted clothing - clearly, you're a tramp.
3. No staying at home with your kids - you lack ambition.
4. No excessive sweating - you freak. Seriously, what is wrong with you?
5. No going make-up free unless you have skin like Beyonce - you look homeless.
6. No telling people what to do, even if they're doing it wrong - B*#@!
7. No talking politics - only one party will see you as confident, the other thinks you sound like moron.
8. No messy house - dear heavens, what are you, a sloth?
9. No working hard to get to the top - clearly, you slept with the CEO.
10. No eating seconds, or eating too fast - you must not care about your body.
There are more but these are the top 10. Like the commandments of confidence. Break one and you're a mere follower or an egotistical maniac.
So, after all this - what's wrong with being confident? Nothing, dear Demi - except that my power suit is at the dry cleaners and I just licked the frosting off the beaters like a four-year old then I resumed my high-volume, off-key singing and I'm still smiling even though I'm not living anyone's idea of perfection.
Oh, and that pole I was using to balance on the fraying line of confidence - I got ticked and shoved that ... well, that's not important, let's just say it was unlady-like.
So am I confident?
I'm confident that I'm average. And that the upper echelons will probably never see me as anything other than less-than.
I'm confident some people think I'm too loud or too much. And with this I'm confident that I'll be less loud only when I'm in a library or rocking a baby.
I'm 100% confident that some people think I'm a freak. A psycho. Crazy.
...but that as long as my body CAN do things, I will push it to see what else it can do.
I'm also confident that many people have certain things they are confident about but most people are not confident about everything. Some people are great at their job but are terrible in social situations. Some people are social butterflies and make others around them feel welcomed and happy they came but they don't know what to do with themselves when they are alone. Confident public speakers may be terrible at doing their own taxes. Confident chefs may be lacking serious skill at helping with their aging parents. Confident doctors may help many people throughout a day but don't know how to deal with their own child who is addicted to a screen.
So, one more time - what 's wrong with being confident?
I think its that its temporary. Sometimes fleeting. And certainly not an overall feeling most anyone has. It ebbs and flows as we hone skills and then learn new things. Which can leave us feeling lacking when we think everyone else has this coveted-confidence all the time.
The girl with the great hair you just saw walk by - she just left the salon. Yesterday her hair looked like a bird's nest.
And that's okay - its fine. If she's got confidence today - let her have it. Tell her to own it. For tomorrow, it may all be for the birds again.