I would like to share the importance of self-love and how it can actually impact our lives. A little story that happened about a year ago, when I went to the gym with my friend. That day, she asked for my honest opinion on whether she looks fat and told me how insecure she was as some of her friends have made fun of her for her size. I could tell how much it was affecting her as I learnt that the reason why she started going to the gym was because she wanted to lose weight and to look even “skinnier” which was what broke my heart. She wasn’t even fat. She just has a larger built. However, that night, I thought about whatever that happened and I realised how much of a hypocrite I was. I could tell her easily that she shouldn’t care about what others say about her, so long as she’s happy with how she looks or feel that’s all that matters. For me, I went to the gym because I wanted to train my body to be healthier, stronger be it mentally or physically and I love the post workout satisfaction as it lifts my mood that’s why I do it for me, myself. But for my friend, she wanted to gym and lose weight to look better for others, not herself.
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It made me realise that maybe yes, there are certain things I’m doing for myself, but there are still so many instances where I focus too much on other people’s opinion. For example, I remember how when I was in primary 6 my grandmother would say things like how my teeth looks really crooked and I would tell my mum that I really want to get braces even though deep down I didn’t feel like there was anything wrong with my teeth alignment. But now that I’m older, I realise how unnecessary that was and how I didn’t even feel the need to have braces anymore.
That night itself, I realise how important self-love is.
We live in a world filled with different society standards where people start focusing on how someone should look, what someone should do and so much more. It never ends. There’ll always be someone who disagrees with whatever you decision you make or things you do. However, there’s also people who love and support what you do, I became happier leading my own life instead of focusing on what other people think. The more you focus on you, the more you learn about yourself and what you truly want to be rather than a person you’re taught to be. Once you decide to love yourself for who you are, accept your flaws, your mistakes, only then will you be able to spread the love to others.
According to a research done by Dove’s Real Beauty campaign, it was reported that 7 in 10 girls believe that they are not good enough in terms of their looks, performance in school and relationships with friends and family members. So imagine in this class alone approximately 7 out of 10 of us feel that way.
A lack of self-love can lead us to abuse ourselves. Negative self-talk can affect the way we feel about ourselves and the decisions we make. We are also more likely to let opportunities slip just because we don’t believe in ourselves. We may also constantly blaming ourselves over everything that doesn’t go right and we can even end up abusing ourselves with food, alcohol, drugs, and more.
So, why is Self-Love so important? By changing that self-talk into something positive, it changes the way we see things and lead us into a better relationship with ourselves. Its not just about self-love, it’s a chain reaction. As we learn to love ourselves more, it allows us to realise our worth which allows us to set better boundaries on how we let others treat us, and how we treat ourselves. This will in turn make us feel confident and make us believe that we’re capable in accomplishing more and that there is a purpose in achieving things in life. So when you shape yourself, you shape your life too.
I encourage everyone to constantly work on loving yourself. The goal isn’t to change your narrative to fit. It is to understand how your narrative shapes who you are and contributes to your identity. Personal growth has to be intentional. There are so many ways to cultivate self-love. What really works for me is whenever I take some time at night to really reflect on what has happened throughout the day, or how I feeling and really connect with myself.
Surely, the people you surround yourself with in life has a big impact on your life and your growth. However, you have the biggest impact on yourself. Self-love is a long-time process. Even now I can confidently say that I am I still working on it every day to better myself. Self-love is your secret weapon to living a fulfilling life because your inner world creates your outer world. I hope everyone has some takeaway from my sharing today. Thank you.