For those of you just tuning in, I had a huge realization last night. I realized that I actually do love myself. This is huge because I have spent my entire life in self-loathing and zero confidnece. When I started my journey to self-loving, I was kinda on my own. Which is how it’ll always be. You’ll have people to support you, maybe to tell you what to do, but you have to do all the work yourself. As a very lazy person by nature, this seemed like a very daunting task. Especially because I didn’t have a set of instructions of how to love yourself like I’m going to try to offer today. As an aspie with ADD, a set of instructions would have been awesome. Now, I’m still a work in progress for this loving yourself thing. I still hate my body, for example. But I’ve come so very far, and I’m sure I can help those of you that are not at my level yet.
At first, I wasn’t really sure if it was gonna work. I didn’t really think about that part. But I had learned that it was the only way I was going to be happy and have the kind of life I want for myself. And I was encouraged by seeing so very many people out there who had done so well. The steps I’m going to offer today are steps I think I took. I could be wrong, but it wouldn’t help to try them, right? I started near the end of high school, and I reached the point I’m at last night, at the age of 25. So if you try my steps, don’t worry if they’re taking a really long time to accomplish.
First of all, I had to be honest with myself about everything. As an aspie, this was very easy for me. It should also cause little trouble for you, because this first step doesn’t require any action. For example, I admitted to myself that I hold grudges. No, I didn’t like that about myself. But with the first step, I didn’t have to worry about doing anything about it. I merely had to be aware that that was something I did.
The second step is a million times more complicated it’s practice and/or acceptance. As a lazy person, I didn’t want to change my personality. Even though there was a lot about it that I didn’t like. This step took years upon years because it took a lot of observation and experience, instead of work, to do. See, luckily for me, I’m an inherently good person. That saved me a lot of work. Through this journey, I learned/accepted/decided that most of the things I didn’t like about myself–like my tendency to hold grudges–really weren’t that big a deal. For this specific example, I would tell myself and other people, “I am not God. I am not Jesus. I am not the Virgin Mary. I am a HUMAN, and as a human, it is ok to be imperfect.” choosing the road of acceptance, instead of change, seemed to make things easier on me, even though it took longer. As I matured, I learned how to treat people with respect and courtesy even when I was holding a grudge against them.
That leads into the longest, though not necessarily the hardest, step. Maturing. Growing up. Listening to people and reading blog posts like this. By nature, I have a tendency to turn down and invalidate people’s advice. “That won’t work for me because…” While maturing, I taught myself to hold back those excuses. Then to think long and hard about the advice anyway. Eventually, I would begin to actually try the advice. Sometimes it was worth it. To grow up, you have to be open-minded. Yes, you are a unique individual. But that doesn’t mean that your self-loathing is so different from mine that it can’t be defeated like I’m slowly defeating mine.
Well, I guess I’ve explained it all as clearly as I can. I’m typing this on my phone as I think. I have no rough draft. So I’m going to say, now, that maturing is probably the most important part in this journey. You know how people older than you always tell you that they don’t care about other people anymore? If you continue to mature, you begin to realize why that’s so very true. You learn that other people don’t really matter. For example, my co-workers know I’m a ticking time bomb. It is impossible for them to tell if what they say or do will piss me off. But I’m a very hard worker. And after the anger subsides, I know how to treat them with respect and courtesy. So what if they think I’m psycho? That doesn’t affect me at all. Because I’m an adult and, as such, will still do my job. If they merely don’t like me just because of that, that’s their loss. Because this journey has taught what a beautiful person I really am. When I’m not being psycho :p.
Finally, I think you readers need to know what loving yourself really means. At first, I simply didn’t comprehend it. Was it love, like you love you significant other? Was it luv, like you luv your friends? Or maybe is it familial love? I’m pretty sure it’s quite different from all of those. But, at the level I’m at, it’s mostly like familial love. I am a member of my family, after all. Sometimes, it helps me to imagine myself as a little girl I am related to, and I just want to love her so very much. Because I know the ins and outs of that little girl. I know how she thinks, how she feels, and where she’s coming from. I know her needs, her wants, her aspirations. I know her heart.