“You’re too much… ”
“Too extreme, Too opinionated, Too in-your-face, Too loud, Too skinny , Too fat, Too tall”
No matter what you do, no matter who you try to please, there will always be someone else that has something to say, something to critique you about.
& it’s not even that they are bad people or that they do it maliciously.
We live in a world revolving around comparison and judgment. & I believe (your beliefs can be completely different, but still valid) it is because WE ARE ALL SO BEAUTIFULLY AND DIFFERENTLY MADE.
We are all so different that sometimes it’s hard to take a step back & realize that THAT’S THE WHOLE POINT OF BEING AN INDIVIDUAL!
Think of every REALLY REALLY famous singer you’ve heard of from history…
Here are some examples:
- Whitney Houston
- Ella Fitzgerald
- The Beatles
- Frank Sinatra
- Ariana Grande
- Michael Jackson
- Celine Dion
- David Bowie
- Brittany Spears
I will give someone whatever they want if you can tell me two of those people that sound the same. That have the same or even SIMILAR voice.
The beauty & the fame that was brought to these people came because they were ALL SO DIFFERENT than everyone else in their time. THEIR DIFFERENCES MADE THEM LEGENDS.
Yes, that is music and not every other aspect of life, but I think it serves as a great example to embrace others differences for the beautiful forms that they come in.
The world would be a pretty boring place if everyone looked the same, thought the same, wore the same clothes, said the same things, had the same thoughts, etc.
Embracing others’ differences is what makes us embrace the life that was given to us.
Here is the sad truth: You will never measure up to what society tells you what you need to be.
Whether that is how successful you must be, how you should look, how you should feel about certain things, etc. It will never be enough.
If you are constantly chasing OTHERS approval, one day you’ll try to fit a mold that you think that they think is “ideal”, until you meet another person that makes you question everything you’re doing.
& that is because until we stop living lives of jealousy, comparison, & judgement, we will never live our lives to their fullest potential.
Think of ALL OF THAT NEGATIVE stress that is on a persons shoulders that is constantly living with that kind of mindset. Judgement is exhausting, comparison is exhausting, jealousy is exhausting, chasing others’ approval is exhausting. & this is speaking from experience.
I have struggled with excepting who I am both physically, emotionally, and mentally for most of my life. I am almost 6 feet tall, I am an introverted extrovert, I feel things extremely deeply, and I grew up having different interests than most. I try and live my life with integrity, but that doesn’t always happen. All of these things have led me to be insecure in the past. That has been my journey. Everyone else’s is different and your struggles are valid.
To begin my journey of rediscovery and acceptance of who I am, I started doing a couple things (that I truthfully sometimes don’t follow these days even though I should). I did these things when I was at my lowest & they have lifted me higher and higher.
But before I tell you those things, I need to say this. I am not perfect. I am sososo far from it. I still get jealous, I still get extremely insecure, I still compare myself, I still do all of the things that I said I’m working on. BUT because of all of these things that I am going to talk about, I have become more in love with life and myself and I have learned to embrace others. I am not perfect. I sometimes do not practice what I preach. I am not going to bullshit you & say that I am perfect or even know what I am talking about. I am purely talking from experience, I promise. I will never bullshit you, but I will always be here to help and empower you.
Here are the things that I did and still do! I hope they are helpful 🙂
- I stopped apologizing for who I am.
Whether that was if I got emotional about something that others did not, or how I looked or how good I felt about how I looked (which happened very rarely), or thinking a certain way, or having beliefs that others thought were “stupid”. I stopped apologizing. Because the moment I apologized, I realized, was the moment I admitted there was something wrong with it. & I will be the first to tell you, there is NOTHING wrong with who you are.
- I started complimenting myself
I always thought if I really thought I looked good, or if I was smart, or if I was good at something, I would seem cocky and no one would like or accept me. That was so far from the truth. Everyday I picked two things that I liked about myself that day. One physical & one not. & throughout the day, if I ever felt down, I would remind myself of those two things & that lifted me up. This made me start to truly BELIEVE that I was amazing.
Now this took a bit of practice, it actually took me months and months to actually believe the things I was telling myself when I felt the world thought the opposite.
But once I started tuning out what I thought everyone else thought, I began embracing how I felt, no matter what others thought.
- I stopped thinking that the world was a bad and judgmental place.
People are not as mean as you make them out to be in your head. Those are your insecurities talking. & trust me, I have encountered some very hurtful & judgmental people in my life that have brought me to my lowest, but years later I realized, those people were going through something too. & yes I was hurt, yes I felt absolutely horrible, BUT the fact that they said what they said, or thought what they thought made me realize that they were also going through something too.
Everyone has a story & everyone reacts differently to that story they were given.
- I started exercising.
Not to become a pro or even to become skinny. I started exercising to show myself that I was strong and capable of pushing my own limits. Yes, some weight loss helped a little with my body image issues for sure, but it just made me feel empowered of who I was. Even going 2-3 times a week made me feel better.
- I started believing the kind things people said to me.
Whenever someone complimented me, I would shrug it off, or even worse MAKE AN EXCUSE FOR IT. “Anna, you look skinny!” “oh it’s probably the black that I’m wearing”. “Anna, you are such a good singer!” “oh it’s just a good singing day for me. Doesn’t happen often.” STUPID SHIT LIKE THAT. LIKE WTF PAST ANNA.
Even if in my head it was hard for me to accept, I told myself that if someone complimented me, I would say thank you and smile and that was it. I usually would compliment the person back or continue the conversation. Later, I would reflect on what happened and tell myself that compliment again and again. Until I started to believe it myself.
- I finally realized that I have one body & one mind & one life. & I finally chose to accept that & make the best of it.
I feel like this one doesn’t need an explanation. When you make that realization or if you have already, let me know & I would love to have a conversation about it over messaging or even over coffee.
THIS NEXT ONE IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ONE
- I started accepting and most importantly EMPOWERING others.
The moment I see something good in someone, I speak it. I tell them, because they deserve to know all the good that they have within them. They deserve to know how good they look or how awesome their sense of style is. Or how kind or funny or smart or motivational they are. You all deserve to be told how wonderfully you are made.
Now, if I am capable of truly doing that to others, I should be able to do it to myself too.
PSA: this information might be natural for some people & you might not understand why I took the time to write something like this. & if that person is you, I am so so happy for you & your confidence is powerful and real. BUT not everyone has that journey. Actually, more often that not, I feel like people need to know that they’re not alone in feeling similarly to the ways that I did & sometimes still do.
So this is for you. Because you are powerful & beautiful. What you feel is valid, what you look like is more than enough, and what you think and believe makes you the person you are.
No matter what you look like, what you have going on, how you act, how you react, EMBRACE IT. That is how you are made and you should be proud of it.
Should the world what YOU are truly made of.
P.S. you are beautiful.
Listening to: Ariana Grande, thank u, next (freaking AMAZING)
Drinking: hot apple cider
Excited for: my students get to sing Santa into Orland Square Mall tomorrow!
“Being perfect is being flawed, accepting it, & never letting it make you feel less than your best.” – Jessica Alba