Updated: Sep 11, 2020
We live in a world full of things that are constantly highlighting our insecurities or things that we “should be insecure about.” Not only do we see it in all forms of media, but our insecurities are built up by our families, our friends, other people, and you guessed it… the enemy within. That inner voice is a combination of everything that we have seen, heard, and experienced within our life. We form these narratives that are absolutely toxic. They destroy us more each day. It affects all aspects of our lives and we end up paralyzed in making some decisions because you're bound by these thoughts and emotions.
Throughout my life I have experienced bullying in many topics. Some of those things are, about my body image, health issues, not being enough for the job, my life decisions, my immigration status, walk with God/and lack of walk with him, and chilllleeee much more. I remembered I kept getting told that I was fat and that I was an “alien” consistently. When people greeted me they would tell me how much I have gained weight. I was told that guys didn’t want me because I was fat and that I needed to go back to “where I came from.” I was told that I had a wonderful personality and that I would be dateable, only if I lost weight. OUCH! Talk about a punch to the gut. I constantly thought about getting surgery and cried many times because of the comments. I started to believe it, developed a hate for my body and parts of myself. It took me YEARS to be able to even be a bit comfortable with my own body. It’s sad it took me so long to get even where I am.
I tell you this because we all have things that have that we have been berated by. I had to build confidence within myself, learn to speak up to others and myself. I have only one life and one body. The funny part is that at one point I lost “all of the weight.” You know what… I STILL SAW MYSELF AS THAT CHUNKY/FAT GIRL!!! It was so engraved in my head that I didn’t see all of the transformation. I had to transform my thoughts. It doesn't matter if you change your immigration status, get the surgery, lose the weight, or do what people told you to do just fit in. At the end of the day that storage unit in your head needs to CHANGE! We all need freedom from the revolving thoughts.
Your brain is the puppet master. If you listen to everything going on up there when you have toxic thoughts, you will end up in bad places and situations. What I started doing was writing down things I did like about myself. Repeating them to myself…Some people call these affirmations. I identified what things I said to myself or what others said to me that I didn’t like. I came up with responses for when I would hear those things. For myself, “stop talking to yourself like that. You don’t like it when others do it to you… so don’t do it to yourself. You’re ___ (insert positive comment). I also looked up quotes and Bible scriptures that helped me feel better. I had tons of Pins on my Pinterest boards and emails full of different motivational things. Seriously, I think I have over 2k pins on just those things lol. I needed to build that credibility within myself so I had the weapons when others came to attack! Don’t think just one thing is going to solve it all. I believe in having an array of weapons!!
I have created a list of scriptures to battle some common insecurities. See below.
The outside influences were just as frustrating to face. Some people took it as you “talking back,” since they were older than me. I wanted to be respected. In the Hispanic culture it's a lot about how you respect your elders and many conversations are about calling people out on their insecurities or mistakes. This is common in some other cultures too. Here are some things I would say when anyone would bring something up about my insecurities or them just being RUDE-
There is a difference between being aware of where you stand and bullying yourself. When you start speaking kinder to yourself it starts to change things. You start to notice what is true and how you are still valuable even if you don’t measure up to the standard there is to be “enough.” If there is something you are insecure about, is it something you can change? *PLEASE don’t go bleaching your skin, or doing something radical like that. That is not what I'm saying. If you’re uncomfortable about your weight, what changes can you start to make? Doing major life switches all at once doesn't work for everyone. Go in stages. That way it's not easier for you to relapse in your bad habits. If you're insecure about not knowing enough about your field, pick up some books, watch videos, or ask to interview someone that does it to get to know more. Reach out for help. There are people that are willing to help without judging you.
Some other important things that helped:
Create new hobbies that help love you for who you are and where you are today.
Be mindful of who you're spending time around, what your're reading, watching, or following and what messages all this things are conveying to you! Just because you knew someone from 2 years ago and y'all used to hang out, that doesn't mean you need to keep them on your socials if they're triggering you constantly.
Log off for a bit ! Connect back with yourself, nature, and God.
Be around people that point out the good in you!
Revamp yourself and your place every once in a while to give yourself a different feel.
Try new things, because you may surprise yourself how good you are at something. Even if you're not you beat the fear! that is something to celebrate!
Now, just because I wrote this article, it does not mean I do not have struggles and I am 100% cured. Let's be real here! I still struggle with some things but I try not to be my own bully.
Lastly, I want to remind you, that in this world full of some many things telling you, that you are not enough. Do not be one of the people telling yourself that you aren't enough. Speak to yourself with more love. I hope some of these tools helped you.
Just in case no one told you this today: You matter, I see your progress, & You are WAY stronger than you think!