“It’s so hard to love yourself in a world that doesn’t love you back”-Lizzo.
I spent most of my former years wishing I was someone else. It took me years and years and years to be able to look in the mirror and love myself exactly as I was. A lot of that was because of how I saturated my view with social media norms. Even being in the theatre community was damaging at times. The comparison game is at an all time high in every aspect. So when you don’t come out of the womb as society’s idea of “perfect” you spend a couple of years learning how to redefine that term and see yourself right under it. Here are some tips i’ve learned along the way.
1. Make Instagram a Healthier place for you or delete it altogether.
I hear a lot of people who delete their instagram’s or facebook because they can’t help but start playing the comparison game and it makes them crazy. I think part of that is the result of your feed being saturated with images of people’s highlight real. When I first got into fitness I was following all of my favorite fitness blogs and it actually started to destroy me. I would spend hours looking at women’s bodies and wondering why I didn’t look that way and then I would spiral into an endless pit of self-doubt. So after awhile I decided to delete the fitness blogs who didn’t inspire me. So now I only follow women who practice body positivity but still love fitness and have a way of making women feel like fitness is doable for everyone and talk about being healthy and beautiful in your own skin.
2. Wear clothes that make you feel good.
Stop paying attention to size and start paying attention to what literally feels good on your body! I have a favorite pair of jeans that I think fit me perfectly and make me feel sexy and I can literally feel my posture change when I’m wearing them. Clothes, surprisingly, give you more confidence than you think!
3.Practice saying compliments to yourself.
This one sounds silly but I dare you to try it and get back to me. Sometimes we don’t notice how damaging we are to ourselves. There was a point in my life where I literally couldn’t stop making fun of myself and I thought I was being sarcastic and funny but I was swaddling in self-doubt. I was living in fear of reaching my full potential because I didn’t think it was possible. But a simple “Oh I look good today.” When you get dressed in the morning can go a long way! You can even make post it notes for yourself and stick them on your mirror so that when you are looking at yourself you have positive words beaming at you!
4. Read your Self-Help Books!
I didn’t really know what it actually meant to start loving myself until the Summer of 2015 when I read You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero. And since then I’ve read it three times, underlined my favorite parts and wrote in notes depending on what was going on with me during that time. I even travel the book around the country with me on tour. I do this because self-love is something you have to remind yourself to have every single day. While I was reading the book, I was living and breathing the art of being kind to myself and months later when I was done with it, I forgot. So since then I have had many low moments and unkind thoughts. So its about fueling your mind with good things every single day so you never forget that you matter. And the love that you have for yourself can be stronger if you allow it to be.
Your thoughts are so important and delicate and they demand to be felt whether you want them to your not. Journaling is a way of releasing and putting things into perspective for me. You don’t have to do this everyday but you should do it often. Make it a part of your morning or evening routine or both.
6. Surround yourself with people who make you feel good about being YOU!
The people you hang out with have a HUGE affect on you. Make sure its a positive environment and not a negative one where all you guys do is complain.
You may be joking around, but what you’re doing is normalizing negativity and it’s harder than you think to rewire your brain to not be that way. Have friends that support you and inspire you!
7. Love Yourself.
Be kind because this world is hard and we all need to cut ourselves some more slack because of it. Life is too short to punish yourself. The journey to becoming your most authentic self can only happen if you make room for failure and get back up every time.