My motto for the past couple of years has been to love myself so much that I wouldn’t need love from anybody else. How could I love myself, if I was constantly listening to the voices in my head saying, “you’re too tall, your skin is gross, you don’t fit in”? I had to overcome these insecurities and more in order to get to the place of loving myself happy. This blog post shares my experience with insecurities and how I changed those negative thoughts.
I had to overcome my first insecurity at a very young age. It didn’t take me long to see that there was something different about me compared to everyone else. My mom told me that it started out as a little red mark on my leg and she figured it would eventually go away but instead, it got darker and grew as my legs grew. I now have a brown birthmark the size of a book on the back of my left leg. It might seem so trivial to an outsider, but to me, it was all I could think about as a kid and when people would ask me questions about it, it would make me feel even more insecure. I remember crying so many times about having to live with this mark on my leg.
In addition to my birthmark, the other insecurities I dealt with early on in life included my height, as I was always the tallest girl and usually taller than all of the boys, my struggles with acne, that were so severe I had to go on Accutane twice, and my teeth, from braces to headgear, I experienced a lot of self-image issues. Of course, as you get older and your body continues to change (thank you hormones), so do those insecurities. You can read more about some of these challenges in my Letter to My High School Self. I have thought about it all, my nose isn’t the right size, my ears are tiny, one eyebrow is higher than the other and the list goes on and on.
Insecurities are inevitable and it is completely natural for humans to feel insecure. However, I believe it is all about how we handle the negative thoughts about our insecurities that allow us to overcome them. These are a few of the tools that I use when those insecurities pop up from time to time.
- Change your narrative – acknowledge your feelings, but check them with the facts. In the big picture of life, are the things that are making you feel insecure going to impact the quality of life that you have? Only if you choose to let it.
- Distance yourself from the person in your head – we all have those negative thoughts that pop into our heads. Give that voice in your head a name and picture those insecurities as someone talking to you, “you aren’t pretty, you aren’t smart enough” instead of “I am not pretty, I am not smart enough”. This will allow you to hear those negative thoughts and then set them free. They don’t serve you.
- Stop comparing yourself to others – comparison is the thief of joy. This is easier said than done but one way to control this is to be aware of what you are consuming. If something isn’t serving you, don’t consume it.
- Focus on the positive – as soon as your negative person pipes up in your head with an insecure thought, respond with something positive that you are confident about.
I hope that by sharing my story and experience with insecurities, that you are able to find a piece of information that may help you with overcoming your own insecurities. There are a lot of resources available if this is something you need further help with.
Podcast: UnF*ck Your Brain
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