February 22, 2018

I'm currently listening to Justin Bieber's Love Yourself as I type this, thanks for the inspiration JB. I was asked to share my thoughts on self-love after sharing my post on mental health. I think self-love is something we all struggle with. We're our worst critic and there's always a flaw we can pick about ourselves which I believe leads to unhappiness. But when you find at least one thing each day knowing you are blessed, you slowly find yourself becoming positive and less upset about the little things that don't matter. I think it's one of the reasons why I love traveling. Traveling has always been an escape for me, but also a reminder to be grateful for the opportunity to even take time and explore other parts of the world. I love learning about other cultures and traveling has really opened my eyes and perspective on how lucky I am to even have access to clean water.

For the past four to five years since I've started posting on social media, I found myself slowly losing myself. I was already very insecure, but social media magnified my insecurities. I always told myself if only I lost a x amount of weight I would be happy. I didn't love myself and it showed through my demeanor, I was miserable and constantly obsessing over my appearance. Obviously, looking a certain way doesn't equate happiness if you're rotting on the inside. I would constantly compare myself to everyone and wonder why my life wasn't like how I planned it out to be. One thing I learned was to stop being so hard on myself, we all have different timelines. I needed to learn patience and know that sometimes God redirects our plans and future. It took me about six and a half years to finish college and I didn't have any goals in life. I felt like a failure. I wish someone had told me to stop focusing on what I don't have but on what I already have. I had trouble seeing how wonderful my life was and always found something in my life to complain about. Once I prioritized my life and rebuilt my relationship with God, family, and less on what I owned I discovered happiness. Of course I still have my bad days but I learned to focus on the good. Yes, my life may look amazing on Instagram but there's so much more to my feed that I don't share or post.

I would also like to emphasize how important it is to have encouraging, positive people in your life. I was in a toxic, emotionally abusive relationship for years that left me hating myself. Know your self worth! Surround yourself with people that genuinely want the best for you and love you for you. Don't give up on yourself and hope you take time to find gratitude in the little things.

What are your thoughts on self-love? P.S. these lovely self love notes are from Jasmine Dowling's shop.

a flower does not think of competing to the flower next to it. it just blooms

Love, Sharon

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