Updated: Dec 15, 2020
Growing up, I was a scrawny little weirdo. I was a triple threat: homeschooled, a theatre kid, and a sci-fi fan. And hey, there is nothing wrong with being a scrawny little weirdo. The only problem was my inability to embrace myself for who I was. I never fit in, and I let others’ opinions of me affect the way I saw myself. Maybe you’ve been there. And from one weirdo to another, I’m here to tell you: you are loved, you are worthy and you are needed. Here’s how I changed the narrative:
Once you go green, you never go back.
Let’s be honest, cameras are terrifying.
Yes, I did make the horns myself from duct tape, thank you for noticing.
1. Allow yourself to experience your emotions as they are, without judgement.
Maybe you grew up with the idea that emotions are something to be hidden and be embarrassed about. I know I’ve often beat myself up and downplayed my feelings because I thought they weren’t valid. But feelings are just information. It’s okay to feel sad, angry, or anxious. It WILL pass. Treating yourself with compassion through hard times is essential to processing life on this planet. You wouldn’t spew negativity to a friend, don’t let yourself spew negativity inward. The way you talk to yourself matters. You are listening.
2. Practice Forgiving Yourself
If you are holding resentment in your heart, it is impossible to grow. You have to live with yourself 24/7, 365 days a year. If you need to, think about why you did what you did, and seek resolution. After you’ve done that: Let. It. Go. The past has no control over you. You don’t need to be afraid, you will do better next time. You are not alone, we are all human and we have all made mistakes or embarrassed ourselves. It’s okay to move on.
3. Learn to say “not yet”, instead of “no”.
There is no shame in being a beginner at something. We are all learning every single day and that is a beautiful thing. Don’t close the door on something just because you feel inadequate or inexperienced. Stay curious and humble and who knows? Maybe someday those “not yet’s” will turn into “yes”.
4. Put Yourself in Spaces Where you are NOT the Most Talented or Knowledgeable Person.
It is scary to step into a situation where you know less than everyone else. So scary that I avoided it for much of my life. I was constantly intimidated by the people around me, and I let that fear keep me separate from the people I looked up to. It’s only when I started showing up in the spaces where I felt unworthy that I learned: everyone is just faking it until they make it. Everyone has struggles in their lives and experiences self-doubt. Yes, even that one person.
5. Honor Your Growth.
You are not the same person today that you were even 3 months ago. And that is freaking awesome! Everything and everyone that has come into your life have shaped who you are today. Take time to acknowledge your wins, no matter how small. Hype yourself up! If you need some ideas, click here to read my list of compliments to give a woman that isn’t based on her appearance.
6. Remember that Life is all about Process not a Product.
You are so much more than your accomplishments. Don’t forget to live your life the way YOU want to, not to impress others. Laugh with your family, tell your friends you love them, go try a new food for the first time, volunteer at a soup kitchen (not because you “should” but because you WANT to). Enjoy every moment without regretting what could have gotten done if you were working instead of living.
It’s hard to condense a lifetime of living down into 6 bullet points. If you take one thing away from reading this, let it be this: practice-self compassion and don’t take yourself too seriously. You can do this. Confidence comes one day at a time when you look at yourself in the mirror and say “maybe I do deserve to be happy”. I’m rooting for you.