Updated: Feb 18, 2021
My personal struggles with self-confidence
I am going to be honest, I used to hate myself! I would look closely at every roll, every scar, every pore and be disgusted by appearance.
Growing up, I was made fun of at school for being "chubby."
I remember one of my friends told me they couldn't be my friend because her friend thought I was too fat. I was totally heart broken, yet the sweetness inside of me responded with, "It's okay."
At the age where I should have body positivity, that was when I learned my unhealthy habits of ridiculing my body.
I thought that I would be able to love myself if I was skinny or if I changed how I looked and acted. But that was far from the truth!
Now at the age of 24, I've only recently changed my perspective on how I feel about myself. Here are the steps I've taken to become more self-positive and self-confident.
At the beginning of March 2020, I was living in Thailand for my 5th year and I was engaged to be married. Little did I know that when the Pandemic hit that my personal life would drastically change.
Suddenly, I was forced to return to Canada and I broke up with my fiancé. So, I came home completely heart broken and quarantined in my room for 2 weeks.
My self-confidence was at an all time low. I felt like I wasn't beautiful, I was undervalued, and not appreciated. So I made a game plan in my time of isolation that I was going to gain my confidence back. The very first thing I did was sign up for an exercise program.
It's been almost a year of consistent activity and I can definitely say that it's brought my confidence level up to the highest it's ever been.
You need to be your top priority.
When you are drained, tired, and burn out - you're physically and mentally incapable of being there for other people. That's why you need to take care of yourself and your well-being. It is essential for you and those around you.
Exercise - Even if it's going out for a walk in the morning, or following YouTube videos for your exercise - start with something!
Eat well - "You are what you eat." What goes into your body gives you the energy you need for the day. If you are putting in unhealthy food, you're going to feel unhealthy and tired. But if you begin to slowly change the way you eat, and start eating more of a balanced meal - you'll notice higher levels of productivity and self-confidence.
Sleep - Our sleeping patterns determine how the rest of our day will go. Having a good sleeping schedule ensures that we feel rested and ready to get the day started.
Wash your face - Doing little things like washing your face, shows that you value your body.
Take a day off - Life isn't about working all the time and being busy. When we are busy, we loose focus of ourselves. So take a day off and do something you love, you deserve it!
It's essential to take care of you! Don't forget to prioritize your time to look after yourself because you're worth it.
Self discovery is all about finding where you fit and what you personally love. The beautiful thing about this is that there are always more things you can discover about yourself no matter where you are at in life.
Get to know YOU . . . What frustrates you? What makes you angry? What makes you happy? What do you want for your life? What are your goals and aspirations?
These are all questions of self-discovery. When you know yourself, you are empowered to be YOU.
Discover your purpose
Purpose is where you find meaning. We have all questioned this before, "Why do I exist? What am I on this earth for?"
I remember someone telling me that if you are feeling a strong emotion towards a certain topic or social injustice, that's probably a good sign that you are to help solve that problem.
What strong emotions do you feel towards a certain topic or problem?
It may be social injustices towards race, human trafficking, homelessness, child abuse, etc. We are all called for something greater in life. So discover that!
Discover your dreams
This was a hard one for me to discover because I used to be so afraid of failure. I thought that if I chose a dream and it did not happen that I would just have a life of discouragement.
BUT good news was, that I was totally and completely wrong!
Begin to ask yourself, "What do I hope for my future? What are some dreams that I have in my heart?"
Write out a list of anything and everything that pops into your head, and begin to think and dwell on the desires that you have for your future.
Discover your goals
Now that you have written out your dreams and understand your purpose, make some personal and career goals that you want to achieve in the next week, month, 6 months, and a year.
Your goals are areas in your life that is attainable to reach in a certain amount of time. Make sure that they are specific and achievable for you!
Discover your strengths & weaknesses
Being self-aware of what you are capable of is so important for life. If you aren't able to identify your strengths and weaknesses, it makes it harder for you to communicate your needs and wants in life.
One way to identify those areas is talking to people who you know and trust. In a safe and judgmental free-zone, ask them what are those areas in your life.
Another way is to take a personality test. That way you can see those areas and be more self-aware.
Compassion literally means to have concern for the sufferings of others, causing you take action and help.
Have compassion on yourself.
Sometimes we can be our biggest criticizer. But we have to keep in mind that we are human begins. Humans make mistakes. Humans are far from perfect. So, don't be hard on yourself, have compassion for what you are going through.
Self-compassion gives us the confidence to be an imperfect being. Allow yourself to make those mistakes and not be afraid to fall.
It's time to live in the freedom to be imperfect and love your weaknesses no matter what!
When you look into the mirror, what do you see?
I've go to say that many times when I've looked into the mirror, I did not have anything good to say about myself. I was not being kind to my body.
It's time to stop shaming yourself and comparing it to another human beings.
I think the beauty of life is that there are many shapes and sizes of humans. Each person can have a specific weight, height, skin colour, etc. It's okay that you look different! It's not okay when you put body-image down.
It's time for you to have the ability to find that beauty in yourself every-single-day. Be kind, be friendly, and be considerate to your body.
You're beautiful! Don't forget that.
This has been the hardest thing for me to do - it's to love myself. To love every roll, every imperfection, every mole, every pore, every hair on my body. To wake up every day and look in the mirror and fall in love with myself. It's been too many years of self-hate that I knew the thing that was holding me back was to love me.
This journey of self-confidence in the past year has taught me many things, and I can confidently say that I am actually comfortable in my own skin.
Ultimately, it takes courage to be able to say, "I love myself just the way I am."
When you're finally at peace with yourself and your body, you can live a confident life and not give 2 craps about what other people think.
Trust me, it's going to be hard work everyday to look at yourself and feel absolute love for what you see, but it's 100% worth it!