Growing up, I wanted everyone to like me. From middle school to adulthood, I tried. I tried to be something that everyone admired, or that I thought everyone admired.
But, I was far from that. I was awkward, shy, introverted, and just not cool. I was never one of the cool girls.
Believe me, I tried to fit in. I envied them, I wanted to look like them. I’d try my best to recreate their nice outfits only to be given the stink eye and looked down upon, or worse, ignored.
I just wanted to feel cool, pretty, and accepted.
I remember some online communities that were solely based on looks and judging other people’s appearances. Well, I tried to get into one. The process is, you fill out an application and submit photos of yourself. The members of the community will then decide if you get in or not. The most votes win.
I remember one person said that she wanted to “gag herself with a spoon” upon looking at my photos.
I didn’t think I was that ugly, I thought I was a cute 17 year old. But obviously I wasn’t good enough.
Why did I need validation from a group of strangers online?
I struggled on and off with low self esteem, as it is pretty normal for a teenager and young adult.
I journaled a lot, which really helped.
Okay side note.. Did anyone else use Kiwibox? I was a member from the early 2000s to maybe 2007, when things tapered off for me.
I loved that site so much. It really helped with my brain dumps and getting errthang out. As a teenager, that’s something that is definitely needed.
I struggled with perfectionism in my adulthood as well, trying to be everything to everyone.
Being a perfectionist made me miserable. I had to just snap out of it and realize that I didn’t need to be perfect to be happy. I’ve learned a lot about trying to be on point with everything and I hope my story can help you too.
Here is why you should stop trying to be perfect.
Perfection is EXHAUSTING.
Trying to be a pretty popular girl in school didn’t work out so well. I always felt like it was too much work, for nothing.
Well, that was also brought over into my adult life.
I wanted so badly to be one of those Instagram fit girls, that I started to do what they did, and post what they post.
One instance, I remember so perfectly, and when I snapped out of it.
I was trying to get a good shot of my butt. And I did. It was one of those pictures where someone is obviously trying to show something off, but also trying to make it not all about it, you know?
I posted it. It got a lot of likes.
But I still wasn’t happy, and I felt slightly uncomfortable.
This IS what I wanted right? To be like those fitness models that look like they’ve got it all together.
As it turns out, no.
I realized this is not who I am. And trying to be like someone else is entirely too much work for a lazy girl like me.
I deleted it and felt better.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I am all for posting a good shot that emphasizes a nice looking body. If you’re proud of how you look, then go for it!
But I was doing it for the wrong reasons.
I tried to get acceptance from others, when I definitely don’t need it.
Being yourself comes naturally. Being someone else is too much of a chore.
There is only one YOU.
I believe that God made us all different and unique. Not one of us is the same.
That’s right. No one can be you if they tried. So, don’t try to be like someone else.
I used to think, “No one would even WANT to be like me, so whatever.” So not true.
We often view ourselves differently than how others view us. We might think, “Ew, my muffin top is showing.” But a stranger walking by won’t even notice.
Your imperfections don’t matter. Everyone has them. Stop focusing on what you hate about yourself, and put your attention on what you love about you.
Shift your energy into all of the positive things about yourself. Emphasizing the negative will only bring you down further, and you are better than that.
Bring yourself up, not down.
If you need to get to know yourself better, here are 50 questions to help you with that.
You don’t NEED to be perfect.
Once you know who you are, and you believe in yourself, you can do some awesome stuff.
Take your passions and gifts and put them to work towards something that fulfills you. Put your personality into everything that you do.
Setbacks are going to happen. They happen to everyone, not just you.
Focus on doing what makes you happy, and don’t worry about what other people are doing.
When you put your energy towards you and your happiness, you won’t care what other people think.
People are going to be judgy and have an opinion on everything. Let them be. It doesn’t matter what they think because it has ZERO effect on how you choose to live.
Those who choose to live a life of judging others aren’t really living.
Don’t live for other people, live for yourself.