This is for anyone who struggles to believe in themselves—who is not comfortable in their own skin and has no idea who they are.
This is for anyone who thinks they’re not good enough.
This is for anyone who feels lost.
We’ve all been there.
You feel like you don’t know who you are or what you’re supposed to be doing. You don’t know what you want to do five minutes from now, let alone five years from now. You know something has to change but you don’t know what.
My advice is simple, but not always easy. The best thing you can possibly do is to get to know yourself.
Find out what you brings you joy. Listen to different genres of music and see what sets your soul on fire. Take up a new hobby. Try a dance class. Go for a hike in the wilderness. See what sticks.
Along the way, you will learn what inspires you and what is worth your time and energy.
“Stay afraid, but do it anyway. What’s important is the action. You don’t have to wait to be confident. Just do it and eventually the confidence will follow.”
~ Carrie Fisher
I recently had a girlfriend tell me that somewhere in the middle of her long-term relationship, she lost herself. She no longer knew who she was or what made her happy. After the relationship ended, she decided to devote her time to getting to know herself better.
She rediscovered music that once brought her pleasure, spent hours reading books that had been sitting on her shelf collecting dust and booked a one-way ticket to Southeast Asia so she could backpack through various countries.
I have never seen her so radiant.
As soon as she realized that she was in charge of her own happiness, she flourished.
Not long after, I found myself in a similar situation and, like my friend, decided that my current relationship was holding me back and stunting my personal development. I decided that I had to come first for the first time in a long time.
I started writing again, something I once loved to do but could no longer seem to find the time for. I completed my reading goal for the year with time to spare. I took a variety of courses, brushed up on my French language skills and even booked a solo trip to Iceland for eight days.
I finally felt free.
This was a familiar feeling. When I moved to Australia from Canada back in 2011, I acquired that sense of freedom. I believed that anything was possible and that only I could make myself happy.
Somewhere along the way, I forgot that.
Finding your bliss is a work in progress. Your ideas about what it means to be happy will differ significantly throughout your life. You will constantly be reinventing yourself and your thoughts on what is important to you will change. You will understand that starting over doesn’t mean that you’ve failed. It means you’re growing and that you’ve learned something along the way.
However, one thing should never change and that is the love you have for yourself.
You should be your biggest fan. If you don’t love yourself, how can you expect anyone else to?
Once you realize that happiness is a choice that you have the power to make, you won’t ever settle for anything less than you deserve.
You will be so sure of yourself that you won’t ever do anything that makes you unhappy again. Whether it’s your relationships, what you do for a living or where you choose to live, if it doesn’t bring you joy–you will find something that does.
Life is too short to waste your precious time on anything that doesn’t nourish your soul and make you a better person.
Putting yourself first does not mean that you are selfish.
If you’re single, you will be content to be on your own and you will wait until you meet someone who truly deserves you. You will know your worth and you won’t ever settle for anyone who doesn’t acknowledge it.
You have to be comfortable in your own skin before you let the right kind of love in.
Getting to know yourself is a process, be patient.
Most importantly, be kind to yourself. After all, there’s no one else like you in this world.
“Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.”
~ Jennifer Lee
Author: Lauren F.
Image: Larm Rmah/Unsplash
Editor: Lieselle Davidson