But that ugly part that you hope and pray no one will see, and spend your entire life trying to hide, change and improve. That is the part you have to embrace. To find who you truly are, you have to be vulnerable. You have to be honest and real. It might be painful at times, but it will always end up being worth it.
Now the flipside to this, and the next important step to creating the life you want, is to accept who you’re not. This one is probably the hardest for most people. At least it was for me.
I spent my whole life trying to be good at things, to fix what I was weak at, often to the point of literal kicking and screaming in anger and frustration when it wasn’t going how I planned. I wasted so much time comparing myself to other people- my friends, my family members, everyone - I hated myself a bit inside for a very long time.
But I never would have admit that to anyone. It was a soft spot for me.
After all, I grew up in a family I felt like I could never please. Who, especially in my teens and younger years, constantly criticized, insulted, and made me feel worthless and unlovable. It didn’t matter how good I was, or what I did, they would always find that ONE mistake or flaw and focus solely on that. I ultimately developed a people pleasing, fear of rejection, and perfectionism problem, in addition to massive anxiety issues. Which I will cover later.
I learned to never be content with myself or anything I did or didn’t do. I would just dwell and beat myself up over every little thing I did wrong or didn’t do “right”. It was TORTURE. Mental and emotional torture.
I admit I still struggle with this a lot. But I’ve finally learned to accept who I’m not. In fact, I’m at a point now where I embrace it. It’s very liberating.
For instance, in the summer of 2018 I finally left my low paying, high stress job at a printing company and started working as the Social Media Marketing Manager for a non profit in New York. I applied for the position initially thinking it was a general office administrative position where I would also manage their social media accounts. But then came to find out that there was a political element to it. Raising money, political lobbying.. all things I hate.
But you know what, I didn’t lie and say I could do it just to get the job (something I would have done in the past because I couldn’t admit failure) That would have been a nightmare. No. I owned up to my weaknesses and confidently shared my strengths and what I had to offer as a unique individual.
I admitted I was terrible at cold calling and hated the idea of telefundraising, and that I didn’t know squat about politics (although I’m always down to learn) but what I was experienced and passionate about was media and marketing. I’m a content creator, with an overactive creative mind, and a passion for promoting organizations with missions I care about. I told her about my own budding socially conscious multimedia publishing company Femmespire Media, and how all the tactics I use on that could be applied to their company and then some. I was very enthusiastic and confident in this side to say the least. But most importantly, I didn’t shy away from exposing my weaknesses. And it worked out. Now I work a flexible marketing job, creating and promoting meaningful content, for a boss who values my strengths, doesn’t chastise me for my weaknesses, and pays me better than any other job I've ever had. All while I work on finishing this book and build my own media empire.
Will it always be easy? No. Will I be working at this other company forever? Hell no, I plan to someday make a living with my business. But one thing is for certain, I am steps closer to creating the life I want. One that I am satisfied with RIGHT NOW. One that I can be PROUD to call my own. Because now I know who I am and accept who I’m not.
And you can too. It just might take some soul searching, an open mind, and a willingness to let go of the lies you might have been programmed to believe about yourself throughout your life. And I want to help you. But you CAN get there. I have faith in you.