The past week or so I have been reading “I AM THAT GIRL” by Alexis Jones. It is a motivational and inspirational book that deals a lot with learning to accept yourself and discover your passions, going after them with a vengeance. Its another one of those books that tells you a lot of things you already know inside (in addition to some new) but in a new perspective and finally at a time that I am willing to truly listen.
As I stated before, I recently realized how deeply my life and self needed to change. A month after I turned 25 I had to accept that what I was doing was not working. I was not happy and it was really no one’s fault but my own. But as I grow and start to change I am working on all the things I want to change and trying to rediscover some old passions so that hopefully I can turn them into a career.
With this undertaking the biggest issue is learning to love myself. Defining what love is to me is difficult. But a big part of it is acceptance and warmth and encouragement. I have never been one to encourage my own dreams. I always relied on the people around me to validate my goals and talents. To approve of my style and tell me that I was beautiful. But I never told myself and therefore have never really believed in my own allure or beauty or ability to accomplish the things I really want in life. In my wildest dreams I would be a singer not wildly famous but enough to get by and a writer, a writer of songs and books and poetry. But even as I type that I realize that I already am those things in some aspects and I ave to give myself credit where credit is due. While some people become divas and can only see their own achievements above everyone else’s I find a crippling ability to recognize mine and I deeply want to change that.
Jones repeatedly tells her audience that we are enough. We have enough, we do enough, and we ARE enough. We cannot succumb to the inner pressures, as well as the societal ones, to be perfect because we already are: “perfectly flawed.” I am tired of hating my nose or not feeling skinny enough and comparing myself to my gorgeous friends. I am now taking all the time I have spent being jealous of others and using it to feel better about myself and my life. It is a really good life.
I think a lot of bonds have been broken because of my fears that were projected onto others and judgments made out of my own fears of a lack of approval. For one, I have already had the approval of the people in my life who matter most. And secondly, the most important approval for me to have is my own. So why is it so hard to give?!?!
I am not sure how long it will take to break this cycle of self hatred but I am working on it everyday. I am slowly regaining the hope and faith that my choices were made because they were the best for me at the time. And the choices I will make from now on will not be made out of fear, but out of a desire for growth and adventure and passion for all that life has to offer.
When I look at the past, I see a lot of wondering what the point was, a lot of times in pain and not wanting to live at all. I spent a lot of time, hating other girls and talking badly about them out of jealousy and as a means to bond with my friends. But I am leaving that behind. I am forgiving myself for my weaknesses, my mistakes, and my flaws. I am sending a big apology to those who I hated because I thought the grass was greener on your side, and I wish you luck and love and all the happiness in the world. Women have to stop tearing down other women and start lifting them up as well as themselves.
Here and now I am choosing to be happy. Nothing extreme has changed in my life, only my attitude. But all of the burdens, challenges and traumas that have held me down before. I am choosing to embrace as a part of who I have become and I will only use them as fuel for my strength and proof that I am resilient. I am learning to accept myself slowly. Everytime I think a negative thought about myself or another person I replace it with a positive one and I plan to continue doing it until the negativity is a rare occurrence instead of an initial response.
I know, deep down that the goals I have for myself are not easy ones to overcome but if I fail, I don’t want it to be because I didn’t try or that I shied away from fear, or that I didn’t give all my effort to it. I want to fail because I put my heart and soul into the project and met everyone I could, and learned everything I could along the way, but because it just was not what was meant to be for me at the time. I don’t want any more time in my life to be wasted.