“Wanting to be someone else is a waste of the person you are.” –Kurt Cobain
Self-acceptance is the key to overcoming self-esteem and body image issues. Furthermore, when you are able to more fully accept yourself and your difference, it will come more naturally for others in your life to accept you as well. Much of this is really in your head, but I’ve noticed that on the days when I am feeling self-conscious about being short or am just not feeling good about myself, others seem to be turned off and are not as inclined to want to interact with me as much. Conversely, when I’m feeling great about myself and accepting who I am, it’s almost as if some magnetic force draws others to me and I feel unstoppable. Naturally, we’re always going to have our up days and our down days, but the goal of this post is to help you to increase the frequency of the self-accepting days and reduce the down days.
One strategy to do this is to avoid engaging the self-fulfilling prophecy in which you enter “search phases” to your database brain that then comes up with evidence that can be harmful to you. Those we interviewed shared some important insights on some factors that influence your ability to accept yourself despite any differences you might have including sending out confident vibes, not worrying about things you can’t change, and the importance of having unconditional relationships.
The rest of this post has now been published in my book Standing up for Standing Out: Making the most of Being Different in Kindle or hard copy.The book includes experiences from 74 people I interviewed who share their struggles and coping strategies on the topics of relationships, belonging, standing out, self-acceptance, working against labels, gaining understanding and compassion, and personal growth. Check it out!