Love Series: Love Yo Self
So there are many types of loves. I will talk about four of the "Loves" that I have struggled with the most in this Love Series, maybe you relate or maybe you’re awesome and you got love down. Reach out to me, I need help. Jk jk… just a little, not the point.
First love on this list LOVE YOUR SELF. No, I don't mean selfish, "ME, ME, only ME" love but learning to know yourself and love every part of yourself. Why? Because you only have you. If we had the option, I would have probably been someone else back in the days I didn't love myself enough, but apparently, we can't.
Loving yourself is a lot more complicated than you would think. There are levels to self-love so here are the levels that I had the hardest time with:
1. Struggles With Identity.
I went through so many phases ... Like SO MANY phases. My hair was nothing but curls and frizz. I dyed my hair, I cut my hair, I curled, I straightened, and I always felt that I was changing myself. My teeth were a horror. I had braces twice, broke out all over and my ugly duckling stage lasted longer than usual. I was the black sheep of the family. Why? Well I kept trying to keep up with my friends knowing damn well I had Hispanic parents and I could never keep up because I was busy being grounded. Through all this, I was never happy with who I was. I was always trying to keep up, fix or change who I was. I felt that all those changes meant that I wasn't good enough. I finally saw that this was the process of getting to know who I was. I realized how Nimia fixes and deals with her hair. I comprehended my ugly duckling stage was showing me that loving myself even when I was the ugliest made loving myself easier when I was on the other side.
Give yourself time and room for change. Just because things are a constant change doesn't mean you're not amazing it just means the sparkle is settling to reveal who you truly are.
2. Struggle With Comparison.
I struggled with this so bad, especially when it came to my body. I never got to be a size 0, 2 or 4. When puberty hit me, I automatically jumped to a size 5 and then up from there. Then Instagram came around, and then I really hated how I looked compared to these Instagram models. This really started to suck when I began to date. How do you keep up? You cant and you shouldn't.
Perfect comes in all shapes and sizes. Trying to keep up with models and all these picture perfect Instagram accounts are for those who don't have an identity. I heard something really refreshing from Blake Guichet on her podcast, Confessions of a Crappy Christian, the other day. She said she unfollows accounts she feels put her in any type of negative headspace. I took that advice and ran with it, and it has made a world of a difference. If I can't stop comparing, I have to stop looking at things that trigger me to compare myself.
3. Struggle With Loving Yourself in a Relationship
I have always struggled with this one, and it goes back to the comparison, but this is triggered by a relationship for me. So what do you do? I can't avoid being with someone that I love because it was hard to wrap my brain around how someone can love me and only me. I always saw that I wasn't girly enough, I don't know how to do my makeup, I am annoying, and I can really frustrate him, so why? Why me? There are so many other girls that would be all that and more for him. But all of this is rooted in fear. He loves who I am, what I am not.
Finding someone who loves every part of you helps work through this. Being honest with that person on your insecurities helps them comprehend how to be there for you, but this all truly stems back to fear. You can't let fear control you. Fear of letting people see who you are and love you as you are can rob you of so much. Your happiness and self-love are far more important.
4. Struggle with Loving myself and my Mental Health
I know peoples minds go straight to "Crazy," but mental health is an essential part of loving all of yourself. You cant love just part of yourself, it is a full package deal.
I've dealt with anxiety and depression for a while and felt embarrassed to even talk about it. Sometimes talking about an issue makes it all the more real, and I never wanted to admit I had a problem. Speaking out about things that you struggle with, like mental health is more a sign of courage than of weakness. Sometimes we see having a fault as a weakness, but when we work through these or learn to love ourselves regardless, this makes us stronger.
Through all these struggles I have learned that I have to give myself time to settle into myself. I am ever evolving into a new version of myself. Sometimes trial and error is the best way to find your true self. My goal is to always allow myself room to be human and have faults. We should all embrace every part of ourselves, the bad and the good. I am who I am because of who created me. I am perfect the way I am because that's how he made you and me.
Is there still any level you’re working on loving yourself?
Just remember that you are perfect at the finish line or in the process of finding who you are. You are wonderfully made by a perfect creator.
With Love + Thankful heart,