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I am not smart enough. I look silly. My questions are dumb. I wish I were someone else…

I still cannot believe that I used to think like that. At first, it was the flaws that made me dislike myself. But then the concern about what others think sneaked into my mind. And I went through high school thinking that I should be someone else just to hide the imperfect self that I was.

Big mistake.

Because not being myself, and implicitly not loving myself meant losing the opportunity to grow healthy relationships with other students, to develop my mindset the right way, and  finally, to know who I truly am.

The worst part?

I felt the outcomes of my behavior every day. My thoughts and beliefs were holding me back until one day I decided to change my thinking. The process itself was not very easy. It was long. But I knew it was going to be like that from the beginning.

So I started with the easiest task – I tried to get to know myself.

I had two papers on which I wrote my qualities and flaws based on my judgement and on what other people told me about myself. Then I wrote my beliefs about several important matters in my life, and I discovered why I believed in those things.

The whole process helped me create my new foundation. I knew what I liked and disliked, what skills I wanted to improve and the ones I should have been proud of.

Then I moved on to becoming friends with myself.

Whenever I would be in a tough situation, instead of criticizing and looking down on myself, I would just be kind. I thought that if my best friend yelled and insulted me whenever I made a mistake, I would immediately dismiss that person from my life. And it’s exactly what I did to myself!

I dismissed my inner troll. Soon I started to understand myself and to take pride in what I accomplished, instead of thinking I was never enough.

I also discovered that trusting my instincts was all I needed.

Whenever I was in doubt, I stopped asking people what I should do, and I focused on how I felt about the situation. If it felt wrong, I would step away. And that made me happy and put me in harmony with myself.

Lastly, I embraced imperfection.

I am still in a continuous development. But in the end, no matter how much we strive for perfection, we’ve got to admit that, in fact, nobody’s perfect.


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