Someone really needs to hear this message
I was 13 years old, and I was holding in my hand my first copy ofSeventeen Magazine. It was different back then, not so much about dating and celebrities as it is now. Mostly it had cute clothes, pretty girls, advice on friendship, decorating your room, some recipes and just mild advice about talking to boys. The girls weren’t sexualized back then, not the way they are in magazines now, but they wereperfect. I didn’t look anything like them.
I vividly remember saying to myself. “I don’t look anything like these girls. But I still have 4 years until I’m 17.” I still had hope. Ugh.
A year later I was in the hospital for an eating disorder.
If you want to block your own path to happiness, start by comparing yourself to others
Comparing ourselves to others is one of the biggest blocks to happiness.
What do you love about yourself? It’s easier to think about our shortcomings, but remember that you amplify what you give your attention to.
Are you a reliable friend? Are you creative? Do you have a lovely singing voice? Do you make people laugh? Are you a great cook? An astute problem solver? Are you good at building things?
Receiving compliments has always been a struggle for me. Why have we conditioned ourselves to say “No” to the good that others see in us?
I never did end up looking like those girls in Seventeen Magazine. Because, I looked like ME.
Perfection: the Art that Doesn’t Exist
Today, when I see a cover model, or anyone, I can appreciate her, or his, unique beauty without comparing myself to them. I can be grateful for someone else’s victories because the Universe has plenty to share and God wants us to go after ours. I am inspired by, not threatened by others.
Now, think of what you admire about the people you love. Likely, it isn’t what makes them perfect. It’s usually something unique about them that you love or are attracted to. A mannerism, or trait that sets them apart.
We do not need to be perfect for others to love us. Knowing this can help release feelings of inadequacy and even jealousy.
If I am with someone and they want someone else, then I am grateful to know, so I can find what is truly for me.
Ready? Let’s Begin
Starting now, shift your focus from what you don’t like about you, to what you, and others, love about you.
A rose doesn’t apologize for its scent.
The sun doesn’t apologize for its light.
Let others learn from, be inspired by, and take delight in what makes you-uniquely-you.
According to a study by Science Daily , 5,000 people surveyed by the charity, Action for Happiness, in collaboration with Do Something Different, rated themselves between 1 and 10 on ten habits identified from the latest scientific research as being the key to happiness. How would you rate yourself?
When participants answered the question: How often are you kind to yourself and think you’re fine as you are? Only 5% of people put themselves at a 10 on the Acceptance habit, and almost half (46%) of people rated themselves at 5 or less. Nearly half rated themselves a 5 or less.
What Can we do to Change our Perspective of Self- Acceptance?
Get help if you’re struggling
There are many actions we can take to boost our own happiness, but sometimes, or a lot of the time, we feel stuck. We feel pinned to our negative emotion and are pessimistic that seeking help can resolve our negative emotion.
Look for the good in others
Don’t take the people closest to you for granted. They may be an easy target because there is unconditional love there, which is a beautiful thing, but constant criticism with no value of all the good in those around is disastrous. Research shows that focusing on the good things that happen to us each day helps to increase our happiness.
Find 2 or 3 good things in your life each day
Humans have a natural tendency to spotlight all that is wrong in our lives, often fixating on negative thoughts in our heads. How often do we consider the good things and how often do we visualize these positives and how they have made us into who we are today? Not nearly enough. Science is showing that gratitude is important for how good we feel psychologically and socially, according to Psychology Today. “It increases how much positive emotion we feel and decreases negative emotion. It raises our overall satisfaction with life and helps us have an overall positive outlook. It has also been shown to reduce health complaints and help us cope with difficulties. It even seems to reduce the importance we place on material goods. And contrary to what we may think, it also appears that it could increase our ability to achieve our goals.”
Dr. Mark Williamson, Director of Action for Happiness, said:
“Our society puts huge pressure on us to be successful and to constantly compare ourselves with others. This causes a great deal of unhappiness and anxiety. These findings remind us that if we can learn to be more accepting of ourselves as we really are, we’re likely to be much happier. The results also confirm for us that our day-to-day habits have a much bigger impact on our happiness than we might imagine.”
There is nobody in this entire world like you. Nobody as unique. Nobody with the exact same characteristics mixed with the same quirks and same abilities you have to bring out a smile in someone you dearly love. Set an intention to create self-acceptance in your own life and you just might be more inclined to accept all those around you, and that is something the world could use right now. If this message resonates with you, and you would like to see more like this, then please feel free to join me at Love is Medicine.
University of Hertfordshire. (2014, March 7). Self-acceptance could be the key to a happier life, yet it’s the happy habit many people practice the least.ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 9, 2017 fromwww.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140307111016.htm
Photo by Brigitte Tohm on Unsplash
Razi Berry is the founder and publisher of the journal Naturopathic Doctor News & Review, which has been in print since 2005, and the premier consumer-faced website of naturopathic medicine, NaturalPath. She is the host of The Natural Cancer Prevention Summit and The Heart Revolution-Heal, Empower and Follow Your Heart, and the popular 10 week Sugar Free Summer program. From a near death experience as a young girl that healed her failing heart, to later overcoming infertility and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia through naturopathic medicine, Razi has lived the mind/body healing paradigm. Her projects uniquely capture the tradition and philosophy of naturopathy: The healing power of nature, the vital life force in every living thing and the undeniable role that science and mind/body medicine have in creating health and overcoming dis-ease. Follow Razi on Facebook at Razi Berry , join her Love is Medicine group to explore the convergence of love and health, and find more Love is Medicine podcast episodes here.