It’s only recently that I’ve become my biggest fan. If anything I’m probably the biggest narcissist that you’ll ever meet. I really like myself. Ok, perhaps I weigh too much on the narcissism; I don’t like myself THAT much. But I do like me. I am comfortable with who I am and where I’ve been and what I’ve done. Granted, some of it wasn’t pretty but we have to learn somehow, right? Some harsher lessons than others. Life is a constant cycle of mistakes, learning from them and getting it right.
When I was in my early twenties I didn’t like myself very much at all. Now, you may be asking how do you know if you like yourself or not? It’s not something one can generally answer from the top of your head. I mean, I always thought I liked myself; but I didn’t. I didn’t at all. You see, enjoying your own company is more of a feeling than a thought. When you can quite happily sit on your own for an entire day and not get drunk, or get stoned, or anything that will distort your senses beyond all recognition and generally “feel good” and not crave the company of another. Then you like yourself.
You see not liking yourself comes with a few attachments and can be the biggest signposts to knowing that you have self hatred. Not liking to be on your own is one of them. Now being on your own for a car journey or at work is different. I mean when you truly have nothing to do and you don’t want to be on your own. You crave alcohol, or drugs – anything to distract you from thinking on your own because you’re scared to where it leads. It’s not a happy place to be; and I’ve been there many times before.
You see, when there’s an element of self-hatred to your life, or certainly what I’ve found, you tend to look to others to define you. Of course I mean you don’t go around asking your friends to “define me please” but you are easily persuaded. Persuaded to do many things such as fit into popular gender roles, wear certain clothes or date specific people. Conformity, or the eagerness to conform to a certain trend is more so a reflection on yourself than it is on others. I mean truly ask yourself why the hell you would want to fit into those jeans if they are too tight? Is it REALLY because you look good in them? Or you only think that because others dictate so?
I see many, many social circles in my life and the dynamics that bind them together. As an outsider people can look in and see it, but as an insider it takes a great deal of introspection to evaluate your friendship circles. How they work and why they are working for you. It’s a strange old world we live in. Usually the most unconfident self-hating person is the ring leader, keeping their buddies close to protect them from outside harm. Their buddies; because their other buddies are friends with the ring leader usually want to desperately conform – because the ring leader is the fabric that binds them all together.
I don’t want to spend this article analysing friendship circles but you get the idea. People are generally more comfortable conforming and having other people define who they are. It’s what the world wants you to think, to act, to behave.
They’re absolutely lying to you though. Couldn’t be further from the truth.
There is a balance to be had. I think it’s easier to live to our primal needs, family, outer circle and so on. But the world today is different. It’s ever evolving, changing, growing at a pace that it rising beyond our emotional and physical primal capabilities. So we need to evolve too. There is so much information out there and so many people it’s very difficult to stop, focus and perhaps smell the roses once in a while.
First of all you need to absolutely forget what friends say and tell you to do. Friends are friends, if they suddenly stop liking you for not doing something or acting a certain way then they are no friends at all. Forget about offending your friends for silly obscure reasons. Remember when mum said: “If Dave tells you to jump off a cliff, would you?” The same would apply here. Ask yourself these questions before you tackle anything. How will it make me feel if I do this? Do I think it’s a good decision to do it? Will this benefit me, or someone else?
You should ask yourself those questions with everything. Buying clothes! Who cares if the addidas tracksuit bottoms make you look like a chav to your friends. Are they comfy? Super comfy? Then bloody wear them. There seems to be a growing trend in the world that tells you that by constantly thinking about yourself is super selfish, yet no-one ever gives any examples. I’m here to tell you that by putting yourself (your physical and emotional self) first in all situations will greatly increase your chances of happiness, because then you wont be doing anything you don’t want to do. And by that you can lead by example as a trickle down effect.
Confused? Let me give you an example. Do you think great people who help others don’t like themselves and never put themselves first? By liking themselves they have the tools to teach others to like themselves. You can only take the student as far as you have gone. The rest is up to them!
And on that note please opt in for some more suggested reading:
Thank you and I think that will be all for now. Happy reading!