In today’s world as a woman having self confidence can be so difficult. Everywhere you turn there are ads for diets and supplements to change your body. There are plastic surgery ads and Instagram models, and everything in our culture says “you as you are is not enough for us. Not skinny enough, not fashionable enough, not #girlboss enough, not woman enough” and it is pretty damn hard to fight that.
But you should.
You are worth fighting through all the BS and you are worth giving the time, work, and attention needed to improve your self confidence and learn how to love yourself. Going on a confidence journey can be so rewarding and eye-opening. You will find yourself asking for that raise you deserve, wearing clothes you never thought you “could” wear, and you will start to talk better to yourself. But it won’y happen over night and it takes more than a bubble bath with wine to love yourself. There is no magic wand that will do the work you need to do inside to start loving yourself, but there are a few things you can start doing now that will help you have a better relationship with your body, your mind, and start developing your self confidence!
Reject anything that says you need to change before you can love yourself or be confident.
It’s harsh but honey, you don’t need to change to love yourself. Unless you are like a murderer, but I highly doubt that. Anyone who says you should just lose a few pounds or go on this diet and then you will love yourself is a crackpot, probably. Self love is unconditional. You just do it. In any outfit, single or wifed up. With or without makeup. You don’t need to “have it all” to love yourself and if you think a last minute crash diet will be just what you need to lose those last 5 pounds and finally like yourself, then I am really sorry but that isn’t going to happen. You need to do the mental work and it starts with saying, I will learn to love myself as I am.
Disclaimer: This is not to say you can’t want those things. It is saying your path to self love cannot have conditions. These things might add to your self love, but they won’t get you there.
Embrace the Journey.
Self love, self confidence, and self acceptance is a journey, not a destination. You will not realize you’ve “made it” because you will always feel you have some work to do. Embrace this, and jump into the flow. if you are constantly striving to reach some point, you are always going to let yourself down. So take a deep breath, step back, and give yourself some grace. You are not going to feel better over night. You probably won’y even see small results of self love right away. It will just happen as you do the work and one day you will wake up and do something you never though you could do because you didn’t have the love or confidence to do so.
Detox your social media.
Like hard. Go through who you follow and mute or unfollow anyone who makes you feel bad about yourself. Anyone who is negative, who doesn’t ADD to your life, anyone you find yourself playing the comparison game with. “IF I just had her hair, or her body, or her house, I could be happy”. Girl stop. You know that isn’t going to make you happy! This spiraling of comparison will only make you feel worse and eat at your self esteem. Get rid of them, mute them, don’t let yourself look at those posts.
Refresh your feed.
Ok what? First you tell me to un-follow now you tell me to follow? What do you want!?
I get it, it’s confusing. Now you have purged the negativity, but you need to add in positive reinforcements. Follow accounts that serve only good things. Follow accounts that inspire positive, fight diet culture, and promote self love. Having these reminders in your feed will change the game and help inspire you to love yourself as you are.
Need some ideas? Click here for my list of the best Self Love Icons on Instagram. I update this list regularly!
Make time for you. To do things you love.
Making time for you is more than just self care with a face mask and wine. Of course, this is part of it but making time for you is so much more. You have to learn how to set appropriate boundaries with the people around you. Learn when and how to say no to protect yourself from being stretched too thin at work or over commit yourself. Give yourself time to breathe every day, and cry when you need to. Give yourself the space to feel all the feels when you need to, and prioritize things like journaling so you can have the space to reflect. do all the self care activities, and set the boundaries you need so you can have that time. Do what you love and make time for those things no matter what it is! Give yourself a break. if you can’t remember the last time you had a break, it’s time! Even if it is just an hour or two. You are worth it, and you must fill your cup so you can pour for others.
By doing these 5 things you have taken the first steps to starting your confidence and self love journey. You will quickly see that there is so much more you can do, and these things will help you explore the next steps. Maybe it is repairing your relationship with food, maybe it is repairing your relationship with your body. Maybe it is taking time for you. Maybe you want to learn how to ask for what you want or say no. Whatever is the next step for you, that is for you to decide. Take these first few challenges and see what it opens for you. i know I started journaling about what I wanted my confidence to look like and I opened up a whole can of worms on my self image that I realized I had work to do there. If you struggle with mental illness, seeking help for your illness can be incredibly helpful in learning to love yourself. Give yourself that priority to seek help. You are so strong, and you are not alone.
You wil see many things are interconnected and this isn’t an easy path. I highly recommend working with a counselor or therapist who can help guide you through activities and be a great sounding board for your thoughts. They can teach you strategies to rewire your negative self talk patterns and habits, and help you see some missing pieces. Their expertise is invaluable!
Remember, this article is not a diagnosis or substitutions for mental health care. Merely, it is a starting point. Once you start,you will begin to fall in love with yourself you will see the effects and feel so much better. It is so worth the work , because your happiness is so worth the work.
All photos are from Pexels.