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Lessons From a Confidence Consultant (Yes, That Is a Job)

With her big hair, statement smile, and 90,300 Instagram followers, it's hard to believe that self-proclaimed confidence consultant Freddie Harrel didn't always, well, have much confidence.


By Priya Rao, Allure
 
With her big hair, statement smile, and 90,300 Instagram followers, it's hard to believe that self-proclaimed confidence consultant Freddie Harrel didn't always, well, have much confidence. The 29-year-old London-based blogger, who was born and raised in Paris, suffered from bouts of depression growing up. "I didn't understand myself at all," says Harrel. "I didn't understand why I was making the mistakes I was making or why I didn't feel limitless like some of the other people I was around."

[post_ads]After two years in risk management (Harrel's career attempt to "make herself look smart") and stints in the fashion industry as a consultant, she started a personal blog as her alter ego "Frankie"—Harrel's very own Sasha Fierce—in 2013. "I was scared of putting my name on it," she says of using a nom de plume. "I was scared of what people would say about me." This inner struggle helped her realize her desire for self-discovery. "What I really wanted was a place, a community that was empowering and acknowledged that we as women don't have everything figured out, and we had the same problems as the beautiful person next to us."

Harrell subsequently started her two-hour She Unleashed workshops. Complete with bubbly, clothes, and snacks, the workshops gather small groups of women of all ages to discuss the issues that plague all of us, including otherness, identity, racism, and sexism. "It's an opportunity for women to work on the relationship with themselves and set whatever power is ahead of them in motion." That idea is more important than ever for Harrel, who is newly pregnant and hopes her child continues to hold on to that innocent ability to want and be anything. "Before the age of ten, you think you can be a princess, you think you can be an astronaut, and then you let society get in the way," she says. "It's time to be who you want."
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1.
Own Your Difference.
"I've always approached all the characters in my head as something very negative, but when you realize those different parts of you make you you, there is no baseline for comparison to others," she says. "Have you own tastes, make your own choices, and let your unique mix guide you to your own quest. I never felt like I belonged, but then at a certain point, I realized I needed to belong only to me."
 
2.
Seek Community.
Although Harrel doesn't post selfies on social media, she does see the value of starting important conversations online. "We all know the Internet can be cruel, but why not see beyond the vanity and start having real conversations on there through comments and likes?" she says. "It may not seem like a big thing, but anything positive you can do to make someone else feel better about themselves will make you feel better, too."
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3.
See Yourself First.
"When I look in the mirror, I see Freddie," she says. "Yes, I'm a woman, and yes, I'm black, but when I look in the mirror, I don't notice my boobs and the color of my skin because I'm always Freddie. Other people are going to remind you of who they think you are, but don't let them. See yourself."
  
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Lifestyle Magazine: Lessons From a Confidence Consultant (Yes, That Is a Job)
Lessons From a Confidence Consultant (Yes, That Is a Job)
With her big hair, statement smile, and 90,300 Instagram followers, it's hard to believe that self-proclaimed confidence consultant Freddie Harrel didn't always, well, have much confidence.
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