We all have parts of ourselves that we find unacceptable. Some of us look at the outsides of ourselves and poke at our chubby bellies or our flappy arms. Some of us look inside and feel pain at the mere thought of our sensitive nature or our over-caring hearts. Why are these things so unacceptable to us?
At some point in your life, someone told you that this thing that you hate was a bad thing. “Don’t be so sensitive. You need to get thicker skin.” Does this sound familiar? I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told this or to not wear my heart on my sleeve or to not take everything to heart. They might as well have just said, “stop being you.” This is code for “We would all be much happier to be around you if you were a completely different person.”
When you dig down a little bit deeper, you realize that there is nothing wrong with you. The people who are telling you that have some part of themselves that they find unacceptable and so they pass that right along to you, without even knowing what they are doing most of the time.
The way forward
So what’s the way forward? How do you get out of this cycle and on to something better, something healthier, something happier? Choose to see love instead. Choose to send love to those parts of yourself that you’ve spent so much time and effort hating. It sounds so easy for like half a second. Or maybe you’re getting a lot of negative backtalk in your head right now. That’s ok. Go with me here.
The first step to loving the parts of yourself that you find unacceptable is to be willing. Don’t think about loving them. Don’t worry about the work and how it sounds silly and how you don’t think it will work. Just be willing. Just be open.
When you notice hate creeping in, be willing to choose something different. When you notice fear taking over, be willing to choose something different. Your openness to change will bring the change about in your life a lot faster than trying to force it and failing over and over again, like so many times before. Just be willing.
Look for help
I hate asking people for help. I commented to one of my friends the other day that I have to be in fear of actually dying before I’ll even think about asking for help. If you feel the same way, you’re not alone. But looking for help doesn’t always have to be actually asking someone. You can also study how other people have found what you’re looking for: love and acceptance. There are so many people out there who have come before you with the same problems and they found solutions that work. Maybe their plan won’t work 100% for you, but you might be able to take a little bit from one person and some from another and create your own plan.
Quiet the inner critic
The worst part of wanting to change is that voice in your head that says:
Yeah right. You keep saying you’re gonna change and it never happens. You’re always going to be the same. You can’t do any better. Don’t open yourself up to failure and heartbreak. Just stop. It’s too much.
I hate that voice. I spend hours and hours in literal arguments with that voice, which is called your ego. I hate it. Sometimes the arguments get so intense that I start making facial expressions and it’s so embarrassing when I’m around other people and my face is all twisted up. Tell me I’m not alone? Well, my dad does it too, so there’s that!
It’s really easy to quiet this backtalk though. All it takes is two words: “What if…?” Instead of saying, “I’m going to love the sensitive part of me that cries easily,” and listening to your ego do a negative number on your mind, say “what if I love the sensitive part of me?” Notice how there’s no backtalk? Notice how quiet it is? Notice that your mind is now playing with the idea and starting to look for ways that it might be true?
Love is the answer
I’m convinced that love is the answer. You might need a creative way to get there. That’s ok. I needed it too. I still need it. But it works, so who cares how we get there!
I’m here to help. I want to help you get past being unhappy because you have parts of yourself that you’ve felt are unacceptable. You don’t need to feel stuck and exhausted. I want to help you live your life in a way that validates who you are and helps push you towards who you want to be.