Liking Ourselves

So I’ve noticed something lately.  Actually, it’s something I’ve been aware of for a while, but I guess I’ve just never really thought about it before.  It’s become pretty normal, or more likely, been normal for quite a while, to dislike yourself.  I mean, I’m not saying that most people hate themselves (hopefully most don’t), but it’s normal to always have something you want to change about yourself or something you don’t like.  I mean, if you really think about it, doesn’t this strike you as kind of weird?  I mean, so we are all born into this world, a world filled with people of all sizes, shapes, skin colors, hair colors, eye colors, genders, sexual orientations, heights, weights, likes, dislikes, food preferences, and plenty of other differences.  The world is a VERY diverse place.  Which to me, is pretty awesome.  It makes it a very colorful and fascinating place to live.  But yet, we spend so much of our time wanting to be different than we are.  Wanting to be more like someone else is.  I’d dare to say that all of us have something we’d like to change about ourselves.  We want to be skinnier, “better” looking (based on whose definition of “better”?), stronger, smarter, or different in some tangible way.  Why is that?  In a world that could not be more diverse, why do we want to be anything other than what we are?  Why do we want to be like someone else?  If you look at it from an outsider’s perspective, doesn’t that seem kind of strange?

We’re all so unique.  I mean, it’s evident in what we do, what we wear, what we like, what we read, what we listen to, who we spend time with, what our jobs are, or in any other aspect of our lives.  But yet, still, we want to change ourselves.  More than that, most of us dislike ourselves.  Why?  Why do we feel the need to be something else?  In a world that obviously accepts diversity (in general… I get that not everywhere or everyone accepts it completely) or at the very least, allows its existence, why do we not celebrate our own uniqueness?

I’m guilty of it too.  My biggest dislike about myself is my weight.  I wish I was skinnier.  I wish I had a different body, one that was more “normal size”.  The truth is, there are people both fatter and skinnier than me.  Don’t get me wrong, part of it is that I wish I was healthier, and I guess there’s nothing wrong with that.  We should all want to be healthy and live long lives.  But in all honesty, even being healthy is kind of misleading.  Sure, you can make sure your body is healthy.  But can you protect it from all the things out there that could harm it?  Not really.  I’m not saying we shouldn’t want to be healthy, but don’t let being healthy deceive you… just living in this world causes all kinds of risks that your health cannot prevent.

But even healthy people don’t like themselves.  They wish they were better looking, smarter, or better at something.  It’s never ending.  Why can’t we just decide that we are awesome, no matter how or what we are?  Each of us is a unique person in a world full of unique people.  Makes it sound not so great, doesn’t it?  But I think it’s awesome… because it gives us permission to be different, and yet to celebrate what we do have in common… that we are all different.

There are so many things out there that make our differences a negative thing.  Fat people are looked down upon.  Racism is still an issue.  We make fun of people who do things differently than us.  Why can’t we just decide that it’s all okay?  We’re unique, we’re different, we’re a wide variety.  And that’s a good thing.  We don’t need to change.  There’s nothing wrong with improvement, but that doesn’t mean we can’t like ourselves exactly as we are… even celebrate how awesome we are, right now, before any improvements.  It goes against the grain, but I think if we choose to like ourselves exactly as we are, it is the first step in also accepting and even celebrating everyone else’s uniqueness as well.  I mean, think about it – everyone liking and accepting themselves and each other?  World peace?  What a concept, huh?

I’ll leave you with a video that I think expresses the idea I’ve got here a little bit, if not a lot.  SO many women chose average in this video… why is so hard for all of us (men AND women) to see ourselves as beautiful (and awesome just as we are)?