Love Yourself First

While a lot of my friends know me for my humor, behind every one of my laughs is a person of endless insecurities. I’ve always struggled with self-love because I’ve come to despise almost every aspect of myself. And even though many people praise me for my confidence, it seems to be the very thing I lack. For a time, I used social media to seek validation, and when that wasn’t enough, I turned to some of my friends. Scrolling down my Instagram ‘Explore Page’ or Tiktok ‘For You Page’, it was almost impossible for me to not compare myself to all the people on it. Whether that be with their physical appearance, academic merits, or even when they were just sharing their talents, I would constantly pick on myself. You’re not pretty, or you don’t study hard enough, or you can never be them; I felt lost in my own mind.

Eager to get better, I studied hard for school and tried to change my appearance. When I got the grades I studied for, I felt proud of myself. After all, I was proving to myself that I was just as smart as the people I saw online, right? But when that ‘high’ started to wear off, I was back to feeling just as unworthy as before. What I failed to realize was that I couldn’t rely on temporary happiness to feel better about myself. Because for every 99 I got, there would always be someone with the 100. And under every new layer of makeup or money spent on clothes, I would still be me.

Depending on something or someone in order to love yourself is always more harm than help. It led me to an unhealthy cycle of constant mental ups and downs, and they soon became something I couldn’t control. Through my experiences, I’ve learned that the only person you can depend on is yourself. You are in charge of how you perceive things, so try to make things seem better, not worse. Learning to love yourself is definitely not an overnight task. It takes time, effort, and love. While I still struggle with my insecurities, I can say that I am grateful for who I am and what I am able to do today. You can never really know what goes on behind someone’s laughter, so be kind to others, and most importantly, be kind to yourself.

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