1. Stop letting people tell you who you should be
No one will ever live your life. No one will ever see the world in the same way that you see it simply because they are not you. So why are you letting people who can’t access your point of view tell you how you should live your life. That’s like Paris Hilton making decisions regarding the working class in America. You wouldn’t really take what she has to say too seriously because she received her fortune just by being born and not by experiencing the joys of a 9-5 job.
This concept remains the same in the maze of life. Don’t allow people who don’t know anything about your story/experiences make you hate who you are because you don’t match up with who they want you to be. Learn to ignore other people’s ridiculous expectations of you and love yourself for who you’ve grown to be.
2. Learn to value your emotions
I’m guilty of ignoring my emotions because I feel like a lot of times they are fleeting and hold back logic. I’ve often said that I wish emotions didn’t exist because I’d get a lot more done. This is because I think I grew up in an environment that subconsciously told me that what I feel is not as important as the facts. I grew up with the underlying notion that emotions should be ignored if success is to be achieved. But this can be dangerous thinking because humans were built to feel. We were built to experience life through passion, love, happiness, sadness, empathy, etc.
It would be hard to accept yourself if you thought that how you are feeling is unimportant. You’d grow to be annoyed with yourself for feeling emotions that you thought were useless and hindering. I propose that if you learn to value your emotions and stay in tuned to that illogical side of you that gives meaning to life and art, it will be easier for you to accept yourself. It’ll be easier for you to stop hating yourself for feeling a certain way. Instead, you’ll say: It’ll be easier to know yourself and love yourself if you’re ready and willing to work through the emotions that you’re experiencing as opposed to hiding from them.
3. Stop thinking you don’t deserve to be happy
This can tie in to number 2 but I wanted to be more specific with this topic. Many times people don’t accept themselves and (whether they know it or not) feel like they don’t deserve to be happy. Happiness becomes a weird emotion to them. Whenever they feel it, they feel like it shouldn’t be happening. They feel like they’re such a disgusting person that they shouldn’t be feeling any happiness at any point in their lives. In a sense, they’re punishing themselves in the same fashion that people who self-harm do. Its emotional self-abuse and I know it well because I’ve been there.
Being comfortable with experiencing happiness comes from being comfortable with yourself. If you feel like you are an awesome person, you won’t mind feeling happy because you value yourself. Happiness isn’t evil, it’s not an unnecessary emotion. Learn to become happy with being happy by telling yourself that you deserve it. Not because of something you did or didn’t do, but simply because you are human.
4. Only allow yourself an hour to sulk around
Often times we all have our moments where we think all hope is lost and the world is ending. We could do 100,000 awesome things but as soon as we make 1 mistake, it’s like Armageddon in our minds. Because of this one little mistake or even, we sit around, pout, ignore texts and calls, and sit in the dark alone punishing ourselves for being imperfect. This accomplishes nothing and it breeds nothing but more self-hatred.
Sulking around is easy. Take the more difficult route by only giving yourself an hour (or day if you need it) to feel sorry for yourself. After that, get up and start living your life again! I know that it’s much easier said than done, but accepting yourself includes accepting your flaws. No one has reached a level of perfection. Accept this fact, work on improving yourself, and move on with your life. Sulking wont accomplish anything, trust me, I would know.
5. Walk around like you own everything
Don’t let this step get to your head, because cockiness is just as detrimental as self-hatred. But sometimes, some super-confidence is needed.
When you go throughout your day, just tell yourself over and over that you’re worth something (instead of telling yourself over and over that you’re stupid and are worthless). Treat yourself to a guilty pleasure, look in the mirror and tell yourself that you look damn good (even if you don’t believe it, after a while you’ll learn to appreciate your physical attributes). Look back on your accomplishments (not your mistakes), focus on the amazing sides of who you are.
Also, as you go throughout your day, try to find as much beauty, art, and inspiration that you can. Often times it’s easier to ignore these things and focus on all of the bad, but observing and appreciating the great things in life can be very uplifting.
Accepting yourself is a process that is different for everyone and it takes time and consistency. If you learn to take these 5 steps and apply them to your life, it can make this process a little easier.
Make sure to comment with your experiences and share with anyone who you think would benefit.