12/15/17

My Journey To Self Love

A few days ago I sat down to film a spontaneous Q&A video where I asked you to send me your questions via Snapchat and Instagram. I got lots of questions on the topic of self-love and feeling confident in your own skin - it seems like a lot of you are feeling overwhelmed (I hear you girls!) so I thought I'd sit down today and write a dedicated post on this topic.


I CHOOSE LOVE

"I am in charge of how I feel today, and I choose happiness."

I think it's important to start by saying that loving yourself and feeling confident in your own skin is an active process and ultimately a choice that you make every day - it's something we must actively pursue. From my own experience over the years, self-love and confidence is not something that you work on obtaining for some time, and BAM once you feel like you've got it, it magically stays part of your DNA forever.

It's kind of like wishing to tone up your body and get super healthy - you decide to ditch the junk food and start nourishing yourself with lots of healthy food and exercise. A couple of months go by and you start to notice lots of positive changes in your body, you're super happy, have more energy and start feeling really confident and sexy in your new figure - amazing! Then all of a sudden you might get a bit 'too comfortable' and stop putting in the work. You retreat back to old habits of unhealthy foods and lazy routines, what do you think will happen? Yep! You'll go right back to where you started.

This principle applies to so many things in life - including healthy relationships. Unless we actively put in effort, attention and ultimately LOVE into everything we do in life, it starts to grow stale and looses it's "life force".

The great thing about this is that anyone anywhere has the power to choose to love themselves - even if it seems difficult at first. As with anything, the more a technique is practiced, the easier it gets, and hopefully it will come to a point where prioritizing yourself, being your own best friend and ultimately taking care of yourself from the inside out becomes a lifestyle.  It's all about creating healthy habits, accepting that life has it's ups and downs, and not striving for constant perfect days.


SELF COMPARISON

"A flower does not think of competing to the flower next to it. It just blooms.” - Zen Shin

The topic of self-love in general is really important to talk about, especially in today's world where social media is more prevalent than ever and it's gotten so easy to compare ourselves to thousands of other people (without even leaving our home!). Let's just start by saying, although I LOVE social media and the endless inspiration I get from it, I take it with a grain of salt ie. I don't take it too seriously.

As a blogger myself (and having connected with lots of other influencers over the years) I know that social media is a polished and curated representation of moments in someone's life. It's a place where we want to share the best of life - moments that made us really happy or events that we worked hard for and are ultimately proud of. When I look through my own Instagram for instance, it's like looking through a highlights reel or the "Best Of" moments - it makes me so happy and that's what I hope it evokes in you as well.

I am so grateful and happy for my life, but that doesn't mean I don't experience hardships, struggles and self doubt. I sometimes get comments under my photos and videos saying I have "a perfect life" - but this is far from the truth. What you don't see are the difficult moments of my life, for instance me waking up at 5am panicking from an awful nightmare or my face full of tears after a difficult conversation with a loved one or trying to keep a positive mood after reading negative comments, or even being so hard on myself when a video I put so much effort into doesn't perform as well as I had hoped.

I'm not the type of person to focus on the negative or difficult things in life. I find it really hard to even open up and express myself to my closest friends and family when I'm really struggling. I hate the idea of someone feeling "bad" for me or having pity. The idea alone makes me cringe. So sharing difficult moments to thousands of people on the internet? Ah let's not even go there!

The point I'm trying to make is, never think someone else's life is perfect. We're all going through our own personal struggles that ultimately shape us into the beautiful, unique and amazing people we are. Can you imagine how much personal growth has come from difficult situations in your life? Let's be grateful that these challenges come our way and we can use them as an opportunity to grow and become better people.

Back to self-comparison, it doesn't always have to be a negative thing. Next time you see someone (online or in real life) and start comparing yourself to them, instead of allowing the automatic negative self-talk to begin (ex. "I am not as successful as her. Why can't I be pretty like that? I'll never be able to have a fit body. I hate my life...") make a conscious decision to step back, take a deep breath and ask yourself, "What is it that I admire in this person? What do they have that I could also see myself having?" It could be anything from a physical object to their positive outlook on life or you may even admire they're dedication to healthy living or entrepreneurship. My point is, instead of seeing someone and feeling negative, let them inspire you! Never feel negative towards another person because that will just bring more negativity into your own life - what you put out is what you get back. Always send good vibes, wish people well, and be thankful you came across someone who could inspire you to make some changes and help develop you to an even more amazing person. And remember someone else's success doesn't take away from your own, like that saying, "Admire someone else's beauty, without questioning your own". You have the power to choose and create the person you want to be. It's all up to you!


SELF CARE

"Treat your body as if it belongs to someone you love."

Taking time for yourself is so important. I find it incredibly regenerating to just spend time alone and with all the responsibilities and things going on in our lives, "me" time is so essential. Take care of yourself so you have lots of positive energy to put back into your life, your family, your friends, your career etc.. "You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserves your love and affection."

Self care comes in many different forms, and I think it's important to first get "in touch" with yourself, look within and see what you really need. Self care could mean preparing yourself a really nice healthy dinner, saying 'no' to a night out to recharge your body, or saying 'yes' and really letting your hair down, taking time to finally clean out and organize your closet, starting that YouTube channel you've always dreamed of, going to the gym and sweating it all out, preparing a dreamy candle lit bubble bath, writing down all your thoughts in a journal and coming up with solutions (so therapeutic!), getting that new bag you've been eyeing the last few months or taking a simple brisk walk to refresh your body.

Whatever it is that you've been thinking of doing, DO IT! Life is short and we should all try to reach our highest potential, and it all starts with you.


Ok I know this was a pretty long post, but I wanted to make sure I covered some important areas when it came to the topic of self-love. I am of course no "expert" and I deal with lots of ups and downs, but I can share what works for me with hopes that it may work for you as well. I really hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I loved writing it. I'd love to hear your thoughts down below! XOXO

33 comments:

  1. Hi Annie, totally unexpected post but I loved it! I've been struggling with some health issues this year and it has taken a toll on my body, so it's been extremely difficult to gain back some self confidence. Whenever I feel bad about myself or my life, I always turn to your videos to make me feel inspired and motivated again. Your positive attitude and kindness really shine through! Keep these posts coming, I'm sure they will benefit a lot of people! Plus, it's always nice to take a peek at what's going on in your mind, it makes us feel more connected with you! Much love from Italy :) xxx

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  2. It's amazing Annie

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  3. Great post! Would love it if you started blogging more! you are so beautiful and inspirational!

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  4. Amazing, it all starts with us and our relationship with ourselves xx

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  5. This is amazing, Annie! I love this and hope you will post more of writings like this. Love ya <3

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  6. Thank you Annie, you are such an inspiration for me, you are an incredible person in and out.
    Love from France ❤️

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  7. So inspiring and honest. Thank you for your post, lots of love ❤️ Xoxo

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  8. Thank you Annie, your article is helpful. You are such an inspiration for me and I admire your positivity in and out.
    Love from France ❤️

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  9. I love this post! You are such an inspiration to so many people, I love how open you are here and would like to see more posts like this from you. I love watching your videos Annie!

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  10. Hi Annie!

    I'm a long time subscriber of yours and I just wanted to say you are the reason why I started my Youtube channel. You inspire me so much in all aspects of my life, health, beauty, personal development, and just lifestyle in general and I can't tell you how much I loved this post. I'm going to make sure that every time I feel low or not my best self, I am going to make sure to reread this post. That will be my form of self love. Just reminding myself that if my role-model could do it, then I can do it! Because I already have worked on myself for so many years and I feel so much love from myself. Thank you so much again for this post and I would love more posts on this topic or any other related topics whenever you have a chance to write to us again. Have a beautiful and peaceful day, Annie! ❤

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  11. This was such a good entry topic for you blogging again (I hope it doesn't stop here) :)
    So important especially for younger girls to not put so much pressure on themselves and as you said in your video a lot of letting go of doubt and stress and comparison comes with age.
    PS my blog: https://peekinmylife.blogspot.de/

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  12. Such an inspiring post! I love all positivity I get just from watching your videos or reading your blog. You really are a wonderful soul and I would love it if you posted more frequently on your blog (specially yours 'what I eat in a day'). Much love from a small country Bosnia and Herzegowina (south Europe) xoxo

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  13. Such an inspiring post! I love all the positivity I get just from watching your videos and reading your posts. You really are a wonderful soul and I would love it if you posted more frequently because I just love to relax with my cup of tea while watching your video (specially yours 'what I eat in a day') or reading your blog. Much love from small country Bosnia and Herzegowina (south Europe) xoxo

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  14. Loved reading your blog.You are such an inspiring and positive person.I love your videos and blogs.I always feel happy after reading your post or watching one of your videos.Thanks for all you do.Love you!

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  15. Hi Annie, I think you are great. This post only shows how much you care about people and also your hopes to try and creat a better world-vibes (starting with the insides of each person). I'm a singer/songwriter and I found your post very calming, like a "stop" sign from this hectic life I'm living. Though I love what I do, as everything else it takes a lot of work and energy. Lots of dedication and stuberness. I also have my ups and downs and struggle with self confidence. There are good days and bad days so I agree with your saying about that it's our clear desicion to decide if we are gonna be happy or misrable. I wish you happy holidays and hope you'll keep growing and blooming. Kisses, Yael.

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  16. Really powerful thoughts you shared with us Annie!! It's so important to make our self a priority and really understand what our body and soul needs! It's so important to be kind with ourselves!! Xx

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  17. Hi Annie! I decided to print this text and put it in a frame somewhere where I will see it every day.
    That's exactly how I want to live my life but sometimes I forget and I hope this text will be my daily reminder. You are one of the "online" people who inspired me the most and in a way helped me accept that it's ok to like cosmetics and beautiful stuff even if most people who don't know me very well think I am superficial because of that. Thank you! Thank you for the effort you put into your work and thank you for sharing moments of your life with us :)

    I am sending you love and hugs from Serbia <3

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  18. This was GREAT. I definitely enjoyed reading this. I've been following you on youtube for so long now but I had never seen your blog posts. This is the first one I have seen and I just want to say thank you. I've been lacking self-care but this post really motivated me so thank you!

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  19. Thank you for being so honest :) I appreciate it a lot, you are a kind of role model for me and it relieves the pressure I put on myself to be perfect.
    Keep on doing! I love your blog/ vlogs/ videos :) the only thing is that you might consider the ethical and environmental impacts your purchases have, maybe sometimes less is more and you can afford buying good products ;-) The customer has the power! I recommend you watching the documentary "the true cost".
    Don't see it as a harsh critic, you are awesome and I love that you are doing your thing!
    :) feel hugged!

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  20. I absolutely needed and loved this post Annie. I haven't visited your blog in a while but, I'm glad this was my welcome back post. Thank you for constantly inspiring and really and truly embodying the thoughts that we have and responding in such a way. Thank you. Love you and your video's. Love and light x

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  21. Lovely post! It was so pleasant to read it and refresh all the things you were mentioned. I agree with all you have said. Hope you have an amazing day. Thanks! :)

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  22. Really good blog post, I'm not much of a blog reader, but I saw on your vlog that you made one and decided to read it and I really enjoyed it :) I think I might keep reading them.

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  23. Thank you for the tips! Love your outlook on life! <3

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  24. Loved this post! So inspiring, thank you and much love from Canada!

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  25. Thank You, Annie for such a great post! You inspire me..inspire to be better version of me :) Love u!

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  26. Thank you,for such a great post..

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  27. I'm so happy that you are such an amazing person, Annie! We think alike on the topic of self love, thank you for spreading the knowledge! And the way you expressed your thoughts is excellent! Stay positive! With love, Rada.

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  28. I'm so happy that you are such an amazing person, Annie! We think alike on the topic of self love, thank you for spreading the knowledge! And the way you expressed your thoughts is excellent! Stay positive! With love, Rada.

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  29. Thank you �� I would like to know what thoughts determine you loving yourself. When you started to have a healthy lifestyle, what kept you going on? How was it to treat your body better and to continue what you started? What do you think will not only inspire but impose a person doing something? It is important to feel but there's something that will make you DO things. What is that?

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  30. I love how you wrote this. It's really you. :)

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  31. You are beatifull inside and outside, you are my inspiration, after watching or reading your posts I feel much better...real positive stream. Wishing you all the best😚

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  32. You are beatifull inside and outside, you are my inspiration, after watching or reading your posts I feel much better...real positive stream. Wishing you all the best😚

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  33. great post, thank you!
    http://www.papatyaski.com/

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