Self Acceptance Is the Key to Self Love
When I like myself, I can love myself. | November Challenge Week 2
PROMPT: How do you show love to yourself?
One day I was in the dressing room at New York and Company (good times. RIP to the brick and mortar!) trying on a bodycon dress I saw in the window. I won’t lie, it was a struggle; a struggle to pull the dress over my chest and tummy and hips. By the time I got it on and glanced at my haggard reflection in the dressing room mirror, I was already a mess of exhausted tears. I looked awful and I felt worse. The dress did not fit me as expected, it didn’t fit at all and it was super unflattering. I felt defeated and ugly and ready to go home from my shopping trip.
So I walked out of the dressing room, put the dress that made me feel ugly back on the rack, and picked up a larger size.
Finding the Right Words is brought you by Viewers Like You! Consider becoming a free or paid subscriber to support me and my work. Thank you ❤️
The issue wasn’t the dress. It was the fact that I was trying to force myself into the size that I wanted to be and not the size that I actually was. When I put on the bigger size, everything was easier. And most importantly, I looked and felt good! I could breathe, I could look at myself in the mirror and like what I saw. No more tears. I bought the dress and got compliments every time I wore it.
Since this dramatic episode in a dressing room, I’ve learned that life is easier when I’m not trying to force myself to fit into something that doesn’t fit me. Life is easier when I stop wishing I was different and when I stop punishing myself for not meeting my own arbitrary expectations or the expectations of others.
There is a lot of pressure in this world to change yourself. To have bigger or smaller body parts, to work a certain type of job, to have specific material possessions. I think a lot of angst comes from wishing you were different, from trying to be someone you’re not.
Self acceptance is the key to self love. I show love to myself when I accept myself for who I am and treat myself with kindness. When I give myself what I need and don’t treat myself poorly just because I’m not where I want to be in life.
I think it’s totally fine to have body goals and any other goal for that matter. It’s not always healthy to be sedentary and not try to make any progress in life toward achieving your dreams. And if there’s something in your life that you want to change and you can do so in a healthy way, I think it’s totally find to put in the effort to change it. But I find personally that I’m the most unhappy when I’m trying to change myself, especially if it’s to meet someone else’s expectations. When I spend time focusing on the things I don’t like about myself, I forget how to love everything that I am.
I think back on that moment in the dressing room when I find myself wishing I looked different or wishing I was someone else. I remind myself that I feel better once I start to accept who I am. When I like myself as I am, I find more things to love.
This entry was written for WEEK 2 of the Finding the Right Words November Challenge under the theme of LOVE. Follow along using the graphic above and write about whatever comes to mind with the corresponding prompts. Share with me using the tag #FTRW or email me at jdoggett9 [at] gmail.
There’s no wrong way to journal. You just gotta find the right words. Happy Writing!