The season of confetti, hearts and love is here - with so many ways of expressing your affection towards your significant other and celebrating the bond that two people share! Though Valentine’s Day is typically celebrated between romantic couples, it definitely warrants a rethink at the turn of this decade!
There are umpteen poems and couplets on love, all wrapped up exotically, describing romantic love as the most beautiful thing in the world, but so few on loving yourself, accepting your flaws, and being proud of yourself.
You are the person who has always been there for you, loved you, in happy times, and in terrible ones. You have worked to be the person that you are today, and that you will be tomorrow. Yet, why are people the most harsh and judgmental when it comes to themselves?
Girls with curves work on getting rid of them, girls without curves work on attaining them. Dark girls flee towards bleaching, fair girls want to get a tan. Short girls wear heels to look attractive, tall girls fear they won’t get a partner. With so much importance given to being the ‘ideal’ body type, we’re starting to wonder if the ideal body type is being anything but yourself!
Physical beauty is the last thing one should be ashamed of. It really is astounding how many people are ashamed of their bodies and how few of their minds! There have been a whole lot of discussions surrounding body positivity, yet body shaming has been so deeply rooted in our minds that it is very difficult to unlearn what we’ve grown up to see around us.
Remember, your appearance does not constitute your worth and competence, nor does it measure you as an individual. You are so much more than what you look like, and exactly are what you think like. Teenage girls who look at the mirror in a self deprecating way, wondering why their skin isn’t as flawless as the actress they idolize, or why their eyes aren’t as beautiful as their best friend’s, or why their figure isn’t like an hourglass, grow up to be women with deeply entrenched insecurities, and continue to measure themselves in accordance to the highly glorified male gaze.
So, how does one truly love oneself? How does one be as kind to oneself as they are to the person they love?
The first and foremost thing in this journey of self love is to quit comparisons. Everyone is their own person with their own quirks, highs, lows, ups, and downs, and it is not expected out of you to look or behave like someone else.
Next, abandon the incessant desire to be poised and perfect at all times. Perfection is unattainable, and imperfections make you vulnerable and human. Humans are bound to make mistakes, failure is your greatest teacher, and it makes you humble. While success may be sweet, it is not a great teacher.
Next up on the list is to let go of toxic people. There’s already so much toxicity and negativity surrounding us, that the last thing we need is a toxic person in our lives - it does not pay to only keep them around for a picture-perfect appearance or for the fear of being questioned. If someone is bringing unnecessary pain and toxicity into your life, it is time to reconsider if the presence of that person does more harm than good. Removing toxic people from your life is difficult, but liberating.
Lastly, put yourself first and prioritize yourself. Chase your dreams and ambitions. Avoid certain people for your own peace of mind and stability. It is not selfish to look out for yourself, because if you won’t, then who will?
Let us all learn to embrace ourselves this Valentine’s Day and be our own dates!
Comment below what you think are habits worth inculcating to love yourself!
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