There isn’t a lot of self love in the world. There aren’t a lot of people loving the way they already are. There aren’t a lot of people happy with the kind of person they are. We are taught to love and not hurt others. Why aren’t we taught to love ourselves as well?
I have struggled with my image to the self. I have felt inadequate and undeserving at the best of times. I still don’t deal fairly with compliments. It is an internal battle that rages at the worst of times. It hinders not only my efforts at getting ahead in life, but also eclipses the little bit of positive light and drags me to a dark bottomless pit of self doubt.
I don’t necessarily crave a comfort zone, but I have appreciated the lack of negative attention being a wallflower receives. At the very same time I have also longed for the rush of adrenaline a change or challenge brings. I want to feel good and positive and happy. And have hated myself for not having the courage to grab the opportunity with both hands (the threat of negativity and all). To get straight to the point, I have been afraid of judgement. To be fair to myself, I have been judged in the past. But to be honest, I am the one who has let it affect me the way it does.
Not plump enough.
Not beautiful enough.
Not fair enough.
Not intelligent enough.
In the past, when I received a negative comment, my mind would immediately go into defensive and then proceed to shut down. It was a reflex action, trying to lessen the impact of negativity and to protect myself from further harm. The more and frequently it happened with the said person, the farther away I drifted from them.
A simple comment like “you probably have darker skin than what suits that dress“, to my oversensitive ears sounded like “you don’t deserve to look pretty wearing that pretty dress, because you are dark skinned.”
I now recognise that it is more a fault with me, than with the others. People do it all the time. And there are all sorts of people. So expecting them to be nice and considerate of the possible insecurities I might harbour about myself is not fair.
Why I have gotten strong enough to make that recognition is because I have learnt to love myself. It isn’t a switch that switched on at a certain point in my life. It has been a very gradual process of introspection, retrospection, self evaluation that led to realisation. The hope to find a strength inside myself that I could pass on to my daughter. The hope to make my dreams come true. The hope to survive and thrive in this world that is sometimes too harsh than it needs to be. The hope to beat the odds and come out a winner. The hopes, dreams, aspirations and the ultimate decision of not giving a s**t to what anyone thought, collectively gave me the strength to be able to appreciate all I have and to love myself for who I am.
I have learnt to love my jiggly tummy
marred decorated by trembly, silvery lines of stretch marks because they signify that I was once home to my beautiful, growing baby. I have learnt to love my crooked irregularly arranged teeth because I appreciate the fact that I have them in original, non-spoilt condition. I love my entire being, just because it is me, unlike anyone else that ever existed. At some point along the way, when I was looking for motivation, I discovered Nick Vujicic and I haven’t been the same. Initially I felt ashamed of having thought so little of my own self. And from there it has been a journey of internal healing and every day I try to be a little less hard on myself.
Loving myself hasn’t completely erased the fear of being judged. I still feel conscious when I go out or talk to someone outside of my comfort zone. I still have self doubt. I still feel insecure. But loving and accepting myself has laid out the course of healing, through which I can effectively deal with those demons. In the face of rejection, instead of thinking “I’m not good enough” I now think “I might not be good enough for them, but I’m still good enough for me and I’m willing to find out if I’m good enough for someone else“. I am willing to try, and try again and keep trying, despite the results. This is a reminder to myself to not stop loving myself, to not stop trying, no matter what.
There is a lesson in here for you, if you are looking for it. There is motivation. And most importantly there is lots of love from me to you, just for being you.
Repeat after me, because sometimes you just need to speak out loud to your inner self to wake up.
I will be strong in the face of adversity.
I will fight back when bogged down by insecurities.
I will stand up for my self worth
I will not give up on my dreams
I don’t care what anybody thinks
I deserve to be happy
I deserve to be successful
I deserve all the good things in life
I am beautiful
I am strong
I am confident
I am unique
I am me