Over the past decade, I’ve neglected myself more times than I can count. Fumbling endless trying to figure out the key to happiness, lying constantly to myself that everything will be okay, and struggling to find the silver lining in each day.
The biggest dilemma I face and still do is learning to know myself again. Something I had lost with the increasing responsibilities of Adulthood and the pull of attempting to please all else but myself. I had practically given up on everything to accommodate adulthood and only to find myself asking who am I?
I found it easier to forgive others but the ability to apply it to myself seemed to waiver with excuses masking the truth. The truth that I had lost myself trying to fit into adulthood.
I was hurting.
I had become a stranger to myself.
These are from my own experiences on how I overcame and you can too.
Here’s how to forgive yourself first.
1. Realize you’ve neglected yourself.
I didn’t realize how much I had neglected myself until my whole world came crushing down one February morning.
In the mist of trying to complete my degree, volunteer at my school’s food bank, run a coffee and donut store, manage our Fashion for change Charity event, and maintain a long distance relationship, I had no time for me.
It was an ever-demanding social life that consisted of me doing everything but neglecting myself and the essence of why I pushed myself to achieve all these things.
Thankfully I have a good loving family and extremely supportive parents that told me the hard truth. The hard truth was I could not save the world, I was only one person, and I had most importantly lost myself in the process of doing it all.
So on that eye-opening day, when I felt so sick I could barely function, I began to cry.
I looked around me..
Where was my guitar?
Where was the diary I wrote in everyday?
Why was I trying to maintain a relationship clearly falling apart?
Who was I and where had I gone?
I realize I had neglected myself for the past 3 years and when reality came crashing down, my two feet where not firmly planted on the ground.
So take a good look at yourself today.
People change but there are key fundamental things that make you happy regardless of whatever stage in life you are at.
Ask yourself what has changed for you?
Are you truly happy?
Where have you gone?
2. Realize that you need time to heal.
Being able to write today is a testimony of the importance of taking the time to heal.
I’m a writer – always been and always will be. Writing was always my solice. I wrote when I was happy and when I was sad, and then one day it all stopped. I didn’t write anymore… I had forgotten how to write.
3. Invest in yourself for the better.
Investing in yourself doesn’t mean buying fancy clothes, or owning the latest iPhone model. It means spending time to nurture your interests or taking a break from all the background noise absorbing your time.
Always remember that when all is stripped away, the one thing that will remain is you.
Invest in self-growth.
4. Ask Yourself, am I happy?
If you said no to 4, repeat it all over again.
Sometimes it may take one try and at other times you may need to repeat this at least 5 times. Whichever and whatever you have to do, do it for yours own happiness.