This is Why Self-Love is Critical

In a world where finger pointing and criticism for every little thing runs rampant, it can be very difficult to be strong and believe that you are powerful. It is not necessarily about not believing in who you are, it is more of the notion that you are afraid because people are so quick to judge what they don’t understand or can’t imagine living with. It is already difficult enough to live in a world where differences are cowered at in fear,  and in a world where people are so quick to turn their nose up at things or people with whom they don’t agree. This is not even necessarily about political views. Even differences such as physical disabilities can be shunned if there is something about you that leaves a distaste in someone’s mouth.

I will start the meat of this article out by saying you won’t be everyone’s cup of tea.

It does not matter how kind you try to be to others. If they don’t find enough commonalities within your relationship or dynamic, it just will not work. This is a sort of damming fact. However, you should not let it deter you from yourself or your personality.   You should make sure you work as hard as possible to keep your authentic and genuine personality in your back pocket. Don’t abandon it. Trying to please others and be someone you are not to satisfy their needs is not how you should live. You should be proud of who you are. Live boldly and loudly. Live fearlessly, and don’t be afraid to dip your toes into the water with the red flag warnings.  Take chances but be mindful about them.

Don’t become so fearless that you defy the law, but surely stand up for what you believe in.

I believe that everyone starts out in life with a blank canvas. Every situation in your life causes you to add a different “color” or experience to your life. Paint your canvas with your own colors. Don’t be afraid to wear your heart on your sleeve and display your canvas proudly.  No other person on this Earth will create the same canvas. All of our life experiences and attitudes towards them will be displayed differently.  Everyone’s approach will be filled with different strokes and shapes. That is what makes life fundamentally different. We all choose to look at our life in our own ways. Even though there may be similar people out there who are dealing with your same afflictions and maybe even your same emotions, I can guarantee you their lives are their own journey in which they choose their path, their attitude towards this path, and the “colors” they choose to represent their journey with.

Happiness and love are something everyone yearns and wishes for.

To be honest, since we live in such an instant world where things are at our fingertips, people wish for these emotions to fill their empty hearts overnight.  This is not how it works, sadly. Happiness and love come first with self-acceptance. Once you have accepted your individuality wholeheartedly, love and happiness will flock to you. Confidence can be a tricky and malicious beast. It takes work. Once you have accepted yourself with full-force type love, you won’t want to look back. It is a feeling of beauty when you feel comfortable in your own skin. When you feel it is a perfect fit, even while embracing all of your imperfections. No one on Earth is a perfect person, no matter how hard they try to spiff up their bodies and spirits with a perfect backdrop, there will always be something that is not created in perfection. That comes to a bit of a reality check or even a culture shock for some. However, loving yourself despite your bigger boob or longer left toe are all a part of the journey to self-awareness.

Self-awareness is so much more than giving thanks for being alive and able to function as a human being.

It is spending time in silence. It is about devouring that silence and reflecting on what you’re meant to do. It is about taking the time to find your way out of that maze of darkness. It is about filling that emptiness up with powerful and meaningful self-affirmation.  Powerful self-affirmation could mean sticking sticky notes on your bathroom mirror that read “You’re beautiful” or “You’re Powerful.” It is about positive messages that make you realize just how important you are.  It is a reminder that you’re making a difference, no matter how big or small. A difference could be something as small as holding the door open for a person at the mall. A big difference could be made when you donate a good portion of your pay check to the cancer society of your choice.

You never know the battle someone may be fighting on the inside.

On the outside, they could be radiating with joy; they could have a smile on their face that could perhaps light up the brightest of heavens. However, on the inside, the depression beast could be trying to deflate their lungs and may keep them awake at night, torturing them little by little, until they go completely mental and lose their mind in the form of a breakdown or worse.  They could also have millions of dollars and live in a house you’d only see in your dreams. Socioeconomic status does not always equal happiness. At one point, they could have been happy with all of the money they ever dreamed of, but maybe now they are struggling to pay their bills because their mortgage overtook their once full and fat bank account. Maybe they’re in such credit card debt that they cannot keep up with their bills.

Just because you appear to have it all does not mean you don’t have your own personal struggle.

Hardship is part of the equation that factors into the human spirit. Maybe the fact that you held the door open for them at the mall took their mind off of all of the financial battles that are going on at home.  Kindness is such an essential action. It shows that we care about one another and we are not ashamed to show it. It reveals the tenacity of the human spirit. Kindness is a test of our character and the results will show just how quickly we are able to bounce back. It represents the fact that we can find a way to keep our heads above water, even when the most tumultuous storms come ashore.

Storms can cause incredible amounts of damage.

They can reshape your life in ways that you never imagined.  They can alter your life. It is strange to think that wind and rain can change your whole life, but it is true. Just like hardships, storms are mother nature’s way of delivering her perspective in the only way she knows how.  It is about learning to be grateful, even when your life  crumbles around  you and you sit amassed in ruin.

Behind every storm and hardship, there is a lesson to be learned, whether it is one of gratefulness or perspective.

It is indeed interesting how life works. Life can be a beautiful thing with colorful sunsets and sunrises. It is about taking pleasure in the simpler things. The way the sun greets you in the mornings as it attempts to shine through your curtains in your bedroom window. It is about relaxing on a pristine beach and falling asleep listening to the peaceful ebb and flow of the water and the waves as they elegantly crash upon the shore.  It is about swimming in the ocean and belly laughing as a wave attempts to suck you under. Life is about listening to the bird’s musical tune and making up your own song. It is about being happy and floating off with that happiness. It is believing you can fly. Life is showing off your confidence and representing the love you have for the skin that protects your fragile bones.

It can be a disastrous thing with storms that take your breath away and leave you gasping for air.

It is about anxiety and depression that attacks you and has a hold on your body that you can’t release no matter how hard you try to push it away. It is about having zero self-confidence and doubting your purpose on Earth.  The weight limit between the good and the bad will no doubt be equal in measure sometimes. Despite this, though, it is about accepting the challenges and beauty with a full mind, body, and soul. It is about tackling all measures of life with full gusto and potential. We only live once. We have to make sure we live a life with equal parts joy and dashes of hardship mixed in. The recipe is not complete without a balance, but once you grab life by the horns, you will never look back. You will ride away into the sunset with a smile.

Life is a big mystery, but one that should never be taken advantage of or taken for granted.

Karla Culbertson

Karla is a 33 year old independent writer. She is wheelchair dependent due to Cerebral Palsy, chronic pain, and hip dysplasia, but she does not let that stop her from enjoying life. It is Karla's goal in life to inspire and uplift others. She loves writing positive blog posts that may have the potential of inspiring others and bettering their lives.

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