When we take on the definition of self that others decide for us, we are lost, feeling alone and worthless in a world full of meaning we believe we can’t belong to. There are many wonderful things about the world and we just don’t feel like we are part of the greater good.
From early childhood we are told what is “good” and what is “bad” for us as humans, as children, as grown women and men, as friends, as siblings, as lovers. The way we experience ourselves internally may often not match up with the WHO we are told to be. We isolate and hide our authentic self, thinking it is not good enough.
Getting stuck in shame and self loathing is dangerous and leaves many people feeling anxious and depressed.
Little girls are told their value comes from being nice, attending to others’ feelings before their own, by being beautiful like the models who parade around on all our media, by not rocking the boat in relationships, by not being “too proud”. Can you be your authentic self if you follow the rules? Can you feel love for your self if someone else doesn’t agree that you are lovable? Can you stand up for what you believe if it might offend others?
Do you know what will help you gain self esteem and confidence? Connection with other women! Girls are taught not to trust each other, to compete and be mean in order to feel “good enough”. Other women are not the enemy. They are the cure. Women can help each other to feel proud and connected and whole and authentic. Don’t let your negative experiences of childhood continue to define how you connect with other women. You can’t love yourself if you don’t like or trust other women.
It is through building trust and sharing your authentic self that you will find connection to others and self love.