Hello friends! Originally I planned on posting a "What's In My Bag?" blog post for tonight. But this week I've been feeling down about myself, so I want to talk about it.
Originally I was just going to move forward with my Self Love series, but I can't move forward without being honest with myself and with you guys. Putting my thoughts online is something that always helps me because it not only helps me transcribe my feelings, but it also helps a lot of you guys.
Lately I've been becoming more personal and more one-on-one with so many different people in my life. But along the way, I've made deep connections that allowed me to speak freely about how I view myself and why I feel like I'm less than.
A couple of days ago at work, I stopped and spoke with a coworker of mine. We both revealed our struggles to each other and mutually understood each other's obstacles. I briefly told her where I believe my obstacles stemmed from, and that encouraged me to talk about them here.
Something I think about (strangely a lot) in my young adult life is what people might've been like in high school. Maybe that sounds obsessive, but I'm just being honest. I wonder what people are like behind the scenes versus in the work place or at college. Because I know I try to be at my best (professionally speaking) when I'm at work or school versus at home or with friends. So I'm always curious about roots of other people. Okay, first of all, I already see a small problem in this curiosity--I'm arguably comparing myself in the process.
In one of Garrett Watts' videos, he asks the question "What were you like in high school?" because, as I agree, it's fascinating to learn what someone was like and how they've evolved in their coming adult years. And what the most frustrating part in all of this is the fact that how I viewed myself in high school is the same way I view myself today, despite how much I've grown.
The neat thing about a blog is: you can see the progress and changes you've made in your life as you continue to blog. Or even just posting on social media. It's wild. But despite how much my physical looks have changed, I'm tainted by the high school version of myself.
March 11, 2015, unedited
So, what was I like in high school? And why is it driving me crazy years later?
Well, for starters, high school is when I finally experienced the most intense anxiety I've ever felt in my entire life. I started saying "no" to everything, refusing to leave the house. Felt too discouraged to talk to classmates. Tried hard to be funny, only to get a rather annoyed reaction from my peers. Ugh, I cringe just thinking about it.
High school was were I felt lonely. I was so focused on being accepted, but it just never worked. I always wanted to be on the homecoming court or the prom court. Even to win a senior superlative. Anything to feel significant.
April 3rd, 2015, unedited
I finally felt accepted when I became one of the field commanders of my school's marching band. But even then, I faced so much insecurity with my peers. I just never felt like I was able to fit in or to make any new friends because, in my eyes, I was an outcast. The most annoying part in all of this is that I still feel like that same outcast.
There was a point in there where I felt more confident. I started saying yes and I started reclaiming my life. I was accepted into the blogging community and made my blog public. But ultimately I kept falling back to that "I'm not good enough" mindset.
May 30th, 2015, unedited
As high school pressed on, I kept obsessing over being accepted. And every day I would come home feeling discouraged. And who knows, maybe it was all in my head. But it made making friends in college tricky. I always had that "what if I'm annoying" mindset.
Okay, let me just talk about how this blends into my view of myself today.
So today, whether I'm at school or at work, I'm constantly feeling like I'm being pitied or like I'm annoying my friends or literally any negative thought and insecurity under the sun. I panic that I'm actually crazy or super awkward and that no one really wants to be around me.
It's gotten so bad at work this week, because I've for some reason seen old classmates every single day for the past week. And every time I see them, I fall into a panic and don't know if they even want anything to do with me. Honestly, it's strange that I've seen a familiar face every day considering I normally never see any former classmates at my workplace.
July 23, 2018
What's interesting about this whole ordeal is that, no matter how anxious, discouraged, and insecure I feel when I see former classmates, I try to be as true to myself as possible. Because I've been internally challenging myself to just be as genuine as possible, whether or not I have interactions with these people again (as unfortunate as that sounds).
As uncomfortable as people sometimes feel when they see old classmates, I think of it as an opportunity. Not only an opportunity to have a friendly encounter, but even an opportunity to prove to myself that the world is not out to get me. Every single encounter I've had this week has been kind and genuine. And they've all really boosted my spirits.
So, things to take from this (and please, tell yourself this as well):
1. I am not the same person I was in high school. 2. I am not even the same person I was last year. 3. I am still growing. 4. I am my own worst critic. 5. The world is not out to get me. 6. There is always room to learn. 7. I need to fully love myself before I can expect others to. 8. I need to not depend on others for validation. 9. There are better ways to channel my doubts than in dwelling. 10. I will challenge myself to be the truest version of myself I can be.
Thank you all so much for reading. What other things should we add to the list?