J Crew jacket, old ( $15 option); Free people top; Target jeans (only $17.50, size up!) and sandals; Nordstrom reversible bag.
Often I find that I am unfairly hard on myself. I mess up, procrastinate, let someone down, or make a mistake, and then I beat myself up for being the worst version of myself. Motherhood is my biggest trigger, mostly because it takes all the insecurities of who I am and throws them in the fire, to be consumed and ravaged by self doubt. I tend to be my worst sometimes as a mom, showing my children over and over again how NOT to be. I go over all the things I said and did, wishing I could go back in time and redo them all, HOPING I CAN be the type of parent all those parenting books and TV shows tell us we should be.
I then take the moments I had that second glass of wine, ate the bag of jelly beans I promised myself I wouldn’t, or bought that piece of clothing that I wanted to complete my life with, but found it only brought guilt and a deeper hole in my soul. I give myself no leeway. I’m either the perfect person I want to be, or I’m a complete failure who doesn’t deserve what she has. It’s the snowball effect of guilt. It says that I must do all the things on my to do list to be a good person, see the weight I approve of on the scale to feel good in my skin, or be the most perfect mom of all time. If I fail at these, I fail as a person.
There is no gray area in my brain for being good. No room for mistakes or slip ups. I’m either who I want to be or I am not. YET, I read something that other that that helped me see how damaging this is. And wrong.
What if we accepted ourselves unconditionally, like we accept those we love in the same way? I can’t help but think about this without looking at how I love my children. I know they have flaws, but that doesn’t matter to me. I love them unconditionally. There is NOTHING they could do or say that could change that. They make mistakes and we say, “Let’s try harder next time to make it better,”or, “Did we learn a lesson from this mistake?” The same can be said for my husband and other loved ones. We all have flaws and do things in a way that is not the best, but those that love us overlook it. We take the good with the bad and look past it.
So then why not love ourselves in the same manner? Love ourselves unconditionally, as we love our children and family members? Embrace the bad parts of ourselves, but focus on the good more. I may not be the kind of person that I want to be all the time, but who is? I should love myself as I love my children. I look at them and see the good in them. The shining, bright light that shines from their eyes and makes me think of how amazing they are. When it comes to them I see the cup as being half full, always. Their amazing qualities outshine the bad in my book.
I’m going to try and love myself the same way. To see myself as my parents do. As someone that is special and bright and full of promise. The little mistakes don’t need to take on gargantuan proportions, they are mere slip-ups. Speed bumps if you will. I need to let the good in myself outweigh the bad, and focus on triumphs and not failures.
That is unconditional love.