When I was 12 years old and entering middle school there was a distinct shift from the carefree innocence of elementary school. The girls started wearing makeup and straightening their hair. It was then that I realized there was one definition of beauty and I was not it. My lips were too thin. My nose was too round. My skin had been taken over my pimples. My boobs were nonexistent. I was awkward. Not helping my “situation” was that I had the most gorgeous mother. She was the definition of beauty that I strived to be. And there was my sister who was only14 months older, yet had developed much earlier and seemed to have skipped the awkward phase.
This insecurity that began while I was in middle school continued throughout high school and by the time I reached college this insecurity had grown to affect my interactions with people, my focus in school, and my ability to be comfortable being myself...I had put my mom on a pedestal and constantly compared myself to my sister and the models and actresses airbrushed on magazines. This physical insecurity had completely enveloped me and had grown to affect my own self worth- I was internally telling myself that I was ugly, unattractive, not smart enough, not cool enough, not funny enough, not worthy of friends.
It wasn’t until I was 20-21 years old that things started to shift internally. I started “to come into my own” as they say. I met truly wonderful, confident and beautiful friends in college who opened me up to acknowledging my own self worth. I realized I was more than my external self. My inner dialogue which I’ve become even more in touch with recently through my meditation practice changed from negative self talk to positive reinforcement, appreciation and love for myself.
I think everyone has dealt with some sort of insecurity at some point. What I’ve learned is how important confidence is, our internal dialogue, and acceptance. We are all our own worst critic. And that’s by choice. We have the power to change how we think and govern our own thoughts. We have the power to be confident, to love ourselves and to be happy. Someone once told me that we can choose our thoughts like we choose our tomatoes. When we go to the grocery store and we’re selecting which tomatoes we’re going to purchase, we sort through the bin and avoid the discolored or bruised ones. We seek to find that perfectly shaped, bright colored tomato. The same goes for our thoughts, except we’re less selective…We don’t spend as much time choosing our thoughts. We let the negative thoughts seep right in.
There will always be external factors affecting what you may be dealing with internally. But, only YOU can choose how to interpret and react to them. It’s still a learning process for me but let me ask you-how do you channel your inner voice? How have you found your confidence and acceptance of yourself? Please feel free to send me an email at [email protected] to share your thoughts.
Be Kind to Yourself.
San Francisco, CA