I’ve spent most my life seeking approval from others. For me, this looks like feeling anxiety, worrying, trying to please everyone, not taking time for myself, overworking, trying to be amazing, and avoiding things I’m not good at.
Sound exhausting? It is.
I’m learning that I need to have my own back, give myself approval, and ultimately learn to like myself (whether I achieve something or not.) It’s not easy, and I’m getting coaching to help.
Strategies I’m Using to Like Myself
1) Keep a Self-Reflection Journal
A few times a week, I write the things I’m most proud of. Choices I’ve made. Insights I’ve learned. Things I like about myself. Times I’ve had my own back and stayed true to myself and what I need.
2) Let go of seeking validation from others
This means noticing my thoughts, feelings, and actions. When I notice I’m doing something because I want to influence how someone else sees me, I take a step back to check in with myself and make sure I’m doing things I really want to do, and for the right reasons.
3) Say yes, or no, and mean it!
Make decisions based on what is best for me, not just because I want someone to like me. Saying no is always okay. You might have to feel a few seconds of discomfort, but that’s much better than saying yes and feeling resentful later.
“Daring to set boundaries is about having the courage to love ourselves, even when we risk disappointing others.” –Brené Brown
4) Do things I’m not already good at
I’ve spent my entire life only doing things I’m already good at. While that feels safe, it doesn’t provide a whole lot of room for growth. I’m slowly building confidence by doing things even when I’m not very good at them. The worst that can happen is a feeling, and I’m learning that I can handle any feeling.