I've discovered in my own life, that somewhere along the line, early on
I had decided that being loved was more important, than being me.
Because being "me" wasn't worth loving.
But unfortunately, that doesn't go anywhere. Avoiding me and putting myself into a relationship, into friendships, or various activities won't be enough.
I'm not going to be able to give it my all and be me if I can't even wake up and look at myself in the mirror. I can't encourage others, and be a help if I'm I beat myself up all the time.
And to be honest, "loving myself," always seemed selfish. The phrase itself sounds selfish as if to say we're only loving ourselves. Others aren't as important, and we only need to love "us."
But that's not true.
As poet Rupi Kaur said,
"it was when I stopped searching for home within others and lifted the foundations of home within myself I found there were no roots more intimate than those between a mind and a body that have decided to be whole."
It's about realizing you are the way you are. Embrace it.
And you don't "need," someone else to tell you how to live your life or make you feel worthy. No marriage or relationship will be able to take away the insecurities all the way, and no job or activity will make you think more highly of yourself.
Ultimately it's about being healthy you so that you can be involved, and you can be YOU with someone else.
First, notice where you are being negative, and complaining. And then ask yourself all that you should be thankful for. All the good things that you've been given, that you have, or that have happened.
The second embrace being alone, realizing that being alone doesn't have to be lonely, it doesn't have to be sad or "awkward." And when you are spending time alone, pay attention to what you like, what you enjoy, and what you prefer.
Think about the people that maybe put you down, that are feeding the insecurities in you, or negatively influencing you, and realize you not only do not need that but maybe you don't even need to be that close to those people. And that's okay.
Lastly, set goals, maybe you're unhappy with your weight, your work ethic, your failed relationships, your insecurities, or your emotions. And set a goal for yourself so you have something to work towards, and something to look forward to.
And memorize this, "I am enough."
Who I am is enough.
What I do is enough.
And what I have is enough.
Once you learn to love yourself you're going to be breaking unhealthy cycles, and you'll notice that you can be a better friend or a better partner because of it.
Self-love isn't selfish, it's necessary.