Category: Personal Development Written by Sophia Smith
It’s not a surprise to anyone anymore that the world around us is designed to make us feel bad about ourselves so that we’ll buy more products to “fix” our “flaws”. Staying confident and feeling good about yourself can seem impossible, and it’s something that nearly all of us struggle with. But no matter your shape, size, skin or style, there are ways you can work on your confidence, and here are a few tips:
Stop making yourself look perfect online
Of course we know that a person’s Instagram profile is a highlight of their life. We only upload the best looking pictures, the happiest moments and widest of smiles. But that’s not how life works, and it’s not just the outside world that you’d be fooling. When you put up the highlight reel of your life online, you start to compare your everyday life to that, and that can get you in a really bad spot mentally. Your real life isn’t a highlight reel – and it isn’t supposed to be! The bad days are all a part of it, and you need to accept them and yes, share them. It’s okay to talk about having a bad day online, it’s okay to post a picture that inspired joy not because you look the slimmest, but because you’re laughing your head off in it – double chin and all! Start making your online persona match your real-life persona and you’ll see the changes in no-time.
Don’t compare yourself
Sticking with the online world – because it plays a massive role in our lives today – let’s talk about comparing yourself to others. You already know that the images you see online are the best out of a hundred, altered and edited: anything to make the person look like a perfect version of themselves. But instead of taking that picture at face value, try to actually get to know that person. What are they like? What are their insecurities? What do they want in life? When you take the time to talk to people and meet them, you will stop blindly comparing yourself to them and thinking of them as gods and epitomes of perfection, and start seeing them for what we all are: human. You’re not less than anybody else because your thigh gap doesn’t match their pictures, you’re both people with dreams and problems just like everyone else, and feeling bad about not looking like someone else will get you nowhere.
Start dressing up your “flaws”
We all have little things we dislike about ourselves. The way our arms look, the size of our feet, the hairs on our body or any of the million little things we pick apart. These are usually things that have been passed down to us, either by hearing our mother complain about them, or by someone pointing it out as a flaw on other people. We tend to hide these things with strategic clothing and layers, but the best way to accept them – is to simply realize you don’t have to hide them. Wear those sleeveless evening dresses that you’ve been so scared of, walk onto the beach in a stunning bikini, wear shorts in the summer and backless tops. You will notice two things the very first time you do this: Nobody is looking at those flaws not cares about them and you don’t care about them either. When you let go of the fears that you’ll be judged and mocked, you will start living your life a lot fuller and happier. You might not think that what you wear is important, but it is very important if you’re hiding behind it and constantly thinking whether it makes you look a certain way.
Focus on the good parts
Yes, what’s on the inside is much more important than the outside. However, that doesn’t mean you can simply dislike everything about your body and ignore it – that’s just not how it works. What you can do, however, is to find the parts of you that you do love, and focus on them, while learning to love the other parts of you. If you think you have really awesome legs, wear all the shorts in the world. Love your nails? Eye-catching manicure every day. Gorgeous hair? Style it differently all the time. But while you’re focusing on the good parts, don’t forget about learning to love everything: Don’t like how your tummy sticks out? Accept how soft it is to touch or for someone to lay their head upon. Think you have bad legs? They are carrying you every day to where you need to be so you better start appreciating them. It’s a process, give yourself time.
Learn what you want to change
It’s a very fine line between accepting yourself as you are and realizing what you need to change. That line is usually: “Is this hurting or helping me?” If you want to be thinner just because you think people will accept you and you will get more likes, you are hurting yourself and you should start accepting it. But if you want to be thinner because you want to participate in a certain sport and the extra weight isn’t allowing you – that’s a good reason to change. Always ask yourself why you are making a change, and if you can’t come up with an honest answer that isn’t hurting you – work on accepting it.
Everybody struggles, and the more open you are about your insecurities and struggles, the more you will learn that others feel the same, and the more you can help each other and lift each other up. It’s a long road and it won’t always be easy, but it will be worth it.
Sophia Smith is beauty and style blogger, an eco-lifestyle lover, graphic designer and a DIY enthusiast. She is very passionate about natural skincare, minimalist wardrobe, yoga and mindful living. Sophia writes mostly about beauty-related topics in her articles. She has contributed to a number of publications including: Eco Warrior Princess, Viva Glam Magazine, How to Simplify and Carousel.
This article was submitted exclusively to CrystalWind.ca by Sophia Smith
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