Loving yourself is no easy process.
As a teen, I remember feeling inferior and small. I was horribly shy and terrified of making any noise that would draw attention. In fact, I was quite scared of almost everything. I feared being noticed but also going unnoticed. I remember constantly comparing myself to girls that were far more beautiful than I was and feeling like life would never as wonderful as theirs- feeling as though they possessed some sort of magic that a simple girl like myself was born without.
So I became funny. More specifically, I became self-deprecating because why not shit on yourself and beat everyone to the punch? I would speak horrible truths about myself out loud while everyone around me tried to soothe my self-loathing with compliments.
Looking back, I was convincing others that I was inferior. By speaking so poorly about myself, I was selling others on the idea that I was defective. By being shy and fearful, I was showing people that I must not have anything important to say and that my presence should go unnoticed.
I was so adamant that I was not pretty, not smart, and not important that both myself and others began believing in those sentiments.
Eventually my passivity and fear dulled life to the point that it was no longer worth living. I was existing in a self-imposed hell of self-hatred and self-doubt.
And so I stopped. Just that quickly.
I began telling people how wonderful I was. Because why wait for others to compliment you when you can beat them to the punch? I stopped comparing myself to the beauty of other women and focused on my own, which required that I acknowledge that I possess beauty as well. I began speaking highly of myself and those around me were suddenly convinced as well. There was no room for doubt because I knew with certainty that I had important things to say and my presence should not go unnoticed.
Self-worth is undoubtedly a process but it starts with a decision to love yourself rather than soliciting it from others. After all, there are not enough compliments in the world to fill an empty soul, we must learn how to be whole on our own.