This post is 100% inspired by one I read on thebodyisnotanapology.com which is a website I absolutely adore. As with everything in life the peaks and troughs of this period in my life have been taxing to say the least. One minute I am self- assured, confident and ready to take on the world, the next I’m a basket full of self-doubt and insecurity.
I put a lot of pressure on myself to be happy, ‘strong’ (both physically and mentally) and to bounce back quickly when life gets all too much. That’s all unnecessary pressure if you ask me because I hardly ever want to accept that it’s okay to not be okay. I might preach it but deep down if I’m not whizzing through my daily/weekly/monthly to-do list I feel like I’ve let myself down.
There are quite a few things I have judged and still judge myself for and in the interest of dissecting these feelings, here we go:
I always imagined at 29 financial security would be a breeze (I know, how naive). I imagined at the very least I would have my own little one bedroom almost closet like flat I could call home. I imagined my savings would be flourishing and that buying my first car wouldn’t completely break the bank.
I blame this notion on ‘having it all the way together financially’ for some of my decisions; like taking a job I wasn’t even remotely interested in because it paid more or forcing myself to monetise all my interests to the point where the pleasure was completely extracted from said interest.
I am working hard at not directing so much anxiety towards my financial situation. I keep reminding myself that financial stability will come, that ‘chateau crazy’ will come, that I won’t always need to force an income stream. It’s easy to compare yourself with others and think you’re behind the ball. It’s easy to hear ‘everybody’s pace is different’ and scoff. The pressure to be ‘successful’ can a lot of times be destructive. I’m measuring my success in was that can’t be quantified at an ATM and realising I’m wealthy in many other ways.
Boy how times have changed, but my drinking habits in my early twenties was something I judged myself so hard for. I carried a lot shame for not wanting to stop drinking even when I knew I had to take a chill pill. From violent arguments with my then boyfriend to jumping into a stranger’s car and being assaulted, I knew that at 23/24 I was spiralling but didn’t have anyone to talk to or maybe I didn’t want to acknowledge the issue. I wanted to party, I wanted to be off my face and I wanted to be anywhere but in the present.
I’m proud to say that I don’t judge myself even a quarter as much as I used to. The pressure to ‘grow up’ and act right was overwhelming in parts and sometimes made me want to say fuck it and be 18 again- free of the responsibility of being a grown-up, whatever the fuck that means.
These days I’m proud of even the simple decision to forgive myself for past transgressions and move forward. I’m proud that I considered and wait for it……even participated in counselling!
We all carry a lot of baggage from past and present habits which may have wreaked havoc in our lives. There is no one way to face your demons and when shit gets overwhelming speak with someone, you’re never alone.
Relish in your humanness, it is okay to be flawed. In the moments when confronting your demons are the most daunting dig deep, you’re a force to be reckoned with.
BEING AN ADULT:
Sometimes I roll out of bed and wear whatever I can find, I’m an unhealthy blend of tramp couture and high fashion glam. I often judge myself when I neglect my appearance especially when I don’t feel good on the inside. It’s not easy to wing your eye liner when all you want to do is be buried deep inside the earth’s womb.
From Instagram posts telling you to ‘dress how you want to be addressed’ to inspirational quotes spewing the notion that your life will go to pots if you’re not dressed like the CEO, it can be a task and a half to try and be more ‘adult like’.
I judge myself harrdddd when I rock up to work look in the mirror and don’t see the reflection of a young lass wanting to conquer the world looking back at me. The pressure to be on point even with the most banal things such as eating the right breakfast or making sure I’m driving like a pro is something I need to dismantle in my head every day.
So what if I leave the freezer door open for over 24 hours (fuck my life) or forget to put my best foot forward at a business meeting? Every day is a chance to get some shit right, I’m not super woman and that’s okay. Adulting can be tricky to navigate and that’s okay- really it is okay!
I’m willing to bet my corsa on this one. Everyone has put pressure on their body to be this unrealistic version of what society thinks is adequate.
The days that I can’t stand the sight of my body I become acutely aware that there is still so much unlearning to do. Whilst I haven’t binged in a very long time I sometimes carry the guilt of the days when I could not bring myself to take care of myself physically and would stuff my face with anything and everything.
The first ever time I thought my body was something to be ashamed of I was pre-teen, standing in front of a mirror and picking apart all the things I absolutely hated. I tugged at my ‘bingo’ wings, my back fat and what I considered a quadruple chin and then suddenly burst into tears. I was sick of being huge I told myself.
These days you can’t pry me from my camera because somehow unrelenting self-love has gone from being a motto to a real thing. I won’t lie to you sometimes I feel like I did as a pre-teen or even in how I felt in Ibiza about four years ago, seeing all the thin sculpted bodies at the beach and wanting to vanish. I judge myself when I have that extra piece of cake I reallllyyyyy didn’t even want.
I’ve come to accept that I may never be able to do more than one pull up but I am worthy at this size, a bigger size or a smaller size.
The pressure of getting it right and being on-point all the time means that we are judging ourselves constantly sometimes (and quite dangerously) subconsciously. The good thing is that every time you catch yourself sitting in the pockets of despair and guilt and shame about something regarding your personality or the past or present you are presented with an opportunity to confront your demons. If there are things you want to change go for it, if there is someone you can speak to do it.
Above all else forgive yourself, you are human, you are worthy and you are enough.