“I can’t think of a better representation of beauty than someone who is unafraid to be herself” – Emma Stone
It’s something we all want to say we’re doing, but the truth is that staying true to yourself is incredibly difficult. It’s something that requires a lot of integrity and self-acceptance, not to mention a hell of a lot of ambition! The journey towards self-acceptance is an extremely long and difficult challenge, although it’s one that’s necessary in the search for true happiness.
This is the hardest lesson I’ve ever had to learn, and it’s taken me over twenty years to truly let it sink in. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I no longer care about what anybody says or thinks about me. That’s something that will never completely disappear. However, I can now say that I’m a lot more confident than I used to be (even a year ago) and the opinions of others don’t bother me anywhere near as much as they used to.
One of my biggest regrets is that I delayed starting this blog because I worried what people might think. Looking back, I have no idea why it mattered that much to me. This blog is one of the best things I’ve ever done! It’s opened up so many amazing opportunities I never would have gotten before and I’ve met so many amazing people because of it. It’s crazy to think that I almost didn’t start blogging because I was worried about other peoples opinions.
The problem with our society
In todays society, I feel that it’s so easy to get caught up in other peoples lives. The problem is, we see their lives through the perception they’ve created both through social media and in the real world. What’s important to remember is that you’re only seeing a small percentage of their life; the part they want you to see. So that girl who seems like she has the absolute perfect life… that’s almost certainly not the truth. Nobody’s going to show you all the crap that goes on behind closed doors because that’s personal and private.
It’s so easy to create the image of a perfect life through social media. Instagram is a platform designed to showcase the all the highlights rather than anything negative. You’re going to see flawless selfies, happy couples and people looking like they’re having the time of their lives. Why? Because that’s what people want to share with their friends, families and even strangers. What you don’t get to see is the real stuff going on in that persons life.
This isn’t exclusive to social media. Even the people you see in real life (sometimes the people you’re closest to) manage to hide an awful lot. The truth is, nobody wants you to see the bad side to their life. Everybody wants to pretend they have this brilliant life with no problems at all, and that’s perfectly okay. Nobody is obligated to share anything with other people. It’s just important to remember that what you’re seeing is a very small percentage of something much bigger.
I know it might sound cliche, but I really do think that in the pursuit of happiness, the number one rule is to stop comparing yourself to others. I know it’s hard when literally every single news outlet and social media platform’s predominant focus is to portray the ‘perfect’ life, but that’s all it is; a portrayal. None of it is real. It’s just a form of advertisement to make you believe that they have their lives together.
At the end of the day, you have to have the courage to live life the way you want to. Don’t do something just because someone says you should or because you want to be like someone else; do it because you want to and because you know it will truly make you happy.
What I’m really trying to say is that life is pointless if you spend it trying to be like someone else. You will never be able to be anyone other than yourself and it’s so important that you realise that and learn how to accept who you are. You’ll never really be happy until you do.
Self-acceptance isn’t something that’s going to come to you overnight, or even five years from now. It will be a very long process, but one that is absolutely worth it! Realising that the things you see on social media, and the way people present themselves, isn’t alway true is the first step.