Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Loving Yourself

As a middle school teacher, I am often saddened by the very low self-esteem of some of my students; girls in particular. I am constantly hearing them talk about how they wished they looked like this, their hair was like this, they had this, or how they wished so-and-so would notice them. It breaks my heart to realize how little they think of themselves.

It made me start to think though. Is this just a teenage girl problem? Maybe just through young adulthood? Does this problem go away as we get older? Sadly, the answer is no. We always find ways to put ourselves down. It becomes so ingrained in us to compare ourselves to others and notice our flaws that we just can't help it. We do it all the time. When was the last time you looked in the mirror and thought to yourself, "man, I am just beautiful they way I am." I can't remember. I look in the mirror and notice the gray hairs and the extra lines around my eyes. If I sit long enough, I can think of a LONG list of things that are wrong with me.

Why is that? Why can't I be happy with who I am? I don't mean that I should avoid trying to improve things like eating healthier and getting more exercise. Why can't I be happy with the lines around my eyes because it means I've laughed often?

I don't know, but one of my goals this year is to appreciate who I am more. I will accomplish this by thinking at least one positive thought about myself each day. I mean a truly positive though about who I am, not just a positive though because I am a fairly positive person. If I start down a negative path, I will stop and reevaluate what I think. 
I must be awesome because I made someone that amazing.

I am also going to make more of a point to help others avoid those negative, draining thoughts as well.

Starting today, I will love myself.