I want to share a very personal journey with you guys. This isn’t about sympathy or needing affirmation, I simply need to share this because I know many of you will be going through the same emotions. I am ready to share my story in the hope it can change your relationship with yourself and make you see how amazing you are. My journey to self-love is very much lifelong; it will never be something I find easy. Firstly, I am human; we all have bad days. Secondly, I have spent the last 27 years making myself believe I would never be good enough.
Let’s start at the beginning. As a child I was always told by everyone how beautiful I was, with my white blonde hair, unusual green eyes and how beautiful I would grow up to be. This, for me, was a lot of pressure even at a young age, “What if I didn’t turn out beautiful?”.
I enjoyed playing outside and was never a girly girl. Through my teenage years I was heavier than my friends and had a big bust, that as a tomboy I didn’t really appreciate. As a teenager I went through a tough time like most girls, trying to understand what the HELL was happening to my body and why I was so angry at the world. Some girls at high school called me Fat. I remember one girl for no reason calling me names. The problem is at that age, cruel words shape you because you are too naive to realise that those words are a problem with that girl and not you. I didn’t help myself by reinforcing these words to myself each day. The problem is if you say anything enough you, will start to believe it is true.
I didn’t realise until a few months ago when seeking help for anxiety, how detrimental these words had been on my mind, body and quality of life. As I sat with my counsellor, words I never even knew I felt flooded out. She took notes and at the end of the session showed me them. “I am ugly, people don’t like me & I am scared to be me”. I read it back inwardly. How dare she say these things. It took me hours to realise it was me who said these damaging words and it was me who had to do the work to change my whole relationship with myself.
Time For a change!
That night I went home, I sat staring at my face in the mirror wondering why I hated my looks so much and I had this thought of “what if I would always hate myself”. I googled tips to love yourself. In that moment I realised this wasn’t time for google to help me, I had to do this alone, I had to learn what would work for me. I woke up the next day feeling like I had been in an emotional car crash. I walked passed the mirror and my wonderful mind pointed out how fat my legs looked as I hurried passed the mirror to the bathroom. I had another few negative thoughts so I ran a bath stepped in and started to perform the pendulum technique to relax my mind and body. I had to still my mind for the change I knew was about to come. I took deep breaths as a negative thought came into my mind. I imagined it as a cloud gently floating away. As it did, with it went the bad thoughts. After my bath I stood looking in the mirror at my body, picking a part I loved. I said out loud “I love my shoulders”. Why did I choose these?! Because I had a deeper thought of what these shoulders have carried on them and never broken; losing my mother, helping raise my little sister. A smile crossed my face. I realised it’s not necessarily about loving your body because of how it looks, it can be as simple as an appreciation for what it has carried you through.
This post was very difficult for me to write. I hope it shows that it’s never too late for change. It has also made me realise that every month I want to share an update on how my mental health has been through the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Top tips for Self-Love:
1. Look in the mirror everyday & say “I am Beautiful, I am Smart, I am Important”
2. Treat Yourself: take yourself out for lunch & learn to enjoy your own company
3. Never allow other people’s negative words to change your views on yourself.
4. Trust in your journey: understand there will be days its hard to love yourself, we all have bad days.
All my Love Becca Blogger xxx