A positive self image is a vital component on your journey of self love. Joe (not my boyfriend for those of you who might get confused) is going to talk about how self image and self love relate in his personal experience. Let me know what you think in the comments!
Guilt, selfishness, pride, procrastination; these are the thoughts and feelings we face every day that, if allowed to go ungoverned, will wreak havoc in our lives as they begin to weigh us down. The effect these words have can take months or years, but can also directly affect us immediately. The result of letting these thoughts take control of your valuable thinking space is you will begin to believe them.
My name is Joe Olujic, and although I am not a psychologist or a doctor of self-love, it doesn’t take an expert to tell you that loving yourself is the number one thing you should do for everything else to fall into place. When you allow your mind to be consumed with thoughts of self-hate and loathe, you are tearing yourself apart… Literally. It’s only a matter of time before those thoughts and feelings settle in and manifest into actions of self-harm.
It is far easier for a man to love himself than it is for him to respect himself. Likewise, it is far easier (but not common) for a woman to respect herself than it is for her to love herself. Men, you are in a constant battle for your own self-respect. I know because I’ve been there. It is the longing desire to approve of ourselves that drives us to work 12-hour shifts or to have two or more full time jobs. A man respects himself based off how useful he is and how much he has done and identifies who he is based on what he does for a living. Women, you respect yourself and hold your standards high, which is very good, but it comes to self-image, you crumble. Why? However, it is vital that you respect yourself – and especially your self-image – before entering a relationship and ending up in a situation where your husband potentially doesn’t respect you. Many hide behind a mask of makeup and smiles every day to hide the fact they are crumbling. I know of a woman in her 20’s who has had a child and still has the body of a fit and active young woman, complete with a flat stomach, but when looking in the mirror she is repulsed regardless of the fact she has gifts that many women would kill for.
In both men and women, as human beings, we aren’t satisfied with who we are or what we do (or what we don’t do) which leads to the suppressing thoughts that tend to conquer us and eventually our lives. How do we get that back?
It seems that the greatest struggle in our lives is the constant battle to love ourselves. We focus deeply on the flaws, the failures and the mistakes. What you focus on and what you’ll have more of. Loving yourself doesn’t involve discovering yourself. Loving yourself is about destroying the barriers we have built in our own minds and in our heart.
A poor self-image is the root of nearly every problem in the world today. I’ve improved my self image so much over the past 14 months. All it really took for me was to realize that my negative self-talk was lying to me, that I wasn’t as horrible as I thought I was. That’s the trick! It’s all a mental battle. If someone pays you a compliment, don’t dismiss it verbally or in your thoughts. Instead, accept it as being truthful.
Something I heard someone doing was they took their iPhone (or any other device to record) and they recorded a simple pep talk saying they are smart, they are productive and they won’t become a loser due to procrastination, they are more than a conqueror (Romans 8:37) and they would listen to this recording every day in the morning and before bed. I tried this method, along with reading and found that doing all these things, as systematically as possible, improved my self-image in no time at all; much faster than I would have thought. Conquering the unworthy feelings and thoughts that were rooted so tightly in my self image for over 20 years also helped alleviate a lot of my social anxiety and it can help you too.
Joe Olujic is a gaming industry veteran and has years of experience working in executive-level roles, having served as chief operating officer and assistant general manager of finance during his 15-plus years in the industry. You can find him on his site.
Want even more tips, tricks, and support with your journey of self love? Treat yourself to my e-course, Self Love: The Key To Happiness.