I fight it every single day. I mean every. Single. Day.
The battle to love myself is real and ongoing. I know there are people out there who genuinely just feel good about themselves, who wake up each morning and know deep inside that they are freaking awesome, but I am not one of them. I wish it weren't an issue in my life, but... sigh.
The more i learn about health, wellness, and healing, the more I realize how much it all hinges on our perception of ourselves. How we talk to ourselves. What we are thinking when we look in the mirror. What words we utter under our breath when we know no one else can hear.
The thing is, someone is listening. That someone is you. And, it's also me.
Don't get me wrong -- long gone are the days when I would curse my body for not being what I thought it should be. I no longer visit tanning beds three times a week, break curling irons in half, or secretly wish I could look more like Jennifer Lopez. These days, I protect my skin from the sun, I practice "being nice" to my hair, and I'm honestly trying to be the best version I can of myself, no one else.
Those mean girl thoughts are still there, lurking in the shadows, waiting for their chance to pounce. To criticize. To find fault. To nit-pick. And I've come to understand that no matter how much I want to be rid of them entirely, those nagging thoughts aren't going anywhere.
The feelings of not quite measuring up to some imaginary standard -- yep, they're here to stay.
Those fleeting (and sometimes not so fleeting) moments when I want to curl up in a blanket, watch my favorite show on Netflix, and never leave my house again -- uh huh, they're gonna continue.
That anxious, pulsating uneasiness I feel when i think I may have disappointed someone, at some point, and maybe they're mad at me, and they'll probably never talk to me again, and they're judging me right this minute and thinking what a horrible person I am. But all I really did is forget to add some happy punctuation at the end of a text message.
After so many years of self-analysis and self-helping, I now realize this one, very important thing: that little bit of crazy is always going to be part of me. That disapproving voice inside my head is never going to be completely silenced. My inner mean girl is along for the ride...
but, that doesn't mean I have to let her drive.
The bigger, wiser, more evolved version of myself is in charge now. The part of myself that knows deeply and without reservation that there is goodness in me, and kindness, and beauty, and truth.
And what do I say to my inner mean chick?
Thank you. I mean, really, thank you. I know you're just trying to protect me, in your own, special, special way.
I'll go all Zen Buddhist on her ass.
And then I'll try to integrate her as best I can. With all the love I can muster.