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"Self Love"

by Guest Writer Brisaela (@BrizzyRose)

There comes a moment in our life, when we acknowledge that happiness, honest beauty, and self love stems far greater than what's finite, tangible, and exteriorly visible. We're taught at a young age that when we have skinny waistlines, perfect teeth, expensive outfits, and exciting jobs we'll be at our prime. Society/Hollywood has created this image of "perfection" over time that we can easily find ourselves trying to obtain. "If I look like this", 'If I had that", "If only my life could be this way" are sentence starters we've all been guilty of repeating. If, if, if...what a damaging word. The world, in a sense encourages one to follow the herd­­to be one with what everyone else is doing and saying; it's kind of exhausting, isn't it? So, when someone falls away from the herd, eyes widen and floors begin to shake. Being our own person can awaken and revolutionize.

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”

― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Self love is a tricky topic to discuss because there are all these different beliefs, ideas, and perceptions­­ one to counteract the other, and so forth. My experience, personally has lead me to embrace 'self love' above all else. It isn't easy; I didn't just wake up one morning and say, "Today is the day I love myself completely, flaw and all!" No, but I did wake up each morning challenging myself to fight for myself, for my inner light, for my thoughts, my emotions, for the women and men around me, for the central, universal reality of being absolutely and irrevocably human. We are human. We are messy, emotional, different, uniquely crafted individuals and I think society likes to forget that. Society likes to brush away the faults, as if they are the photoshop to our proverbial cellulite. To that, I said, NO THANKS , I very much like me.

As a 21 year old in today's world, certain aspects can become competitive. I find myself comparing my hair, my clothes, the way I laugh, how dramatic I am in relation to the mellow, has­her­life­together girl next to me. It can be deafening at times because no matter how collected I appear, there will always be a faint, inner voice saying "you can be better." It's just a matter of turning that voice into something uplifting and inspiring. In what ways can I be better? In what ways can I actually be happier? I ask myself...because it can easily get distorted with envy, jealousy, anger, and resentment. I don't want to do that. I want to challenge that inner voice with passion, determination, strength, and encouragement. Our hearts must be steadfast; deeply rooted in grace, hope, and love. Which is why it is crucial for women to be for each other­­not against. We have the power to dismantle the patriarchy­­to say, "You know what? Her success is my success because my success is hers." True self love is compassionate, humble, and always (born ) from within. I always strive to save my humility as well. To recognize that failing is sometimes good for me, and that it's completely okay to not have all my eggs in one basket. As I said above: we are human and our humanness makes us beautiful.

I love that there are people today heeding this message, that there are women and men in position leading by example and moving mountains because of it. It is awe inspiring having role models in a world that can feel uncertain. To have Selena Gomez say she loves herself regardless of what tabloids put out. To have beautiful, empowering women like Kelly Clarkson and Kristin Bell stand up for themselves when called ugly names for bearing a child. It is like the world wants everyone to look a certain way and if they don’t, they get ridiculed, made fun of...yet these women rise above, and defend their separated­ ness. What makes us different makes us inspiring. Lana Parrilla is admirable by staying true to herself and advocating her beliefs. Young persons need someone like Lana. Young persons need someone like Maya Angelou who gave us the best and most genuine spirit that has lived on and will continue to empower and uplift. Someone in the public eye who lives their life according not to the world: but to their hearts.
“If I am not good to myself, how can I expect anyone else to be good to me?”

― Maya Angelou
By leading from the inside out, we allow ourselves to increase to the highest form of self love: to inspire, to heed genuine happiness, to be a light.


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