Self-love advice is now abundant on blogs and digital publications. Here is the real self-love advice that I have learnt and should have taught myself back at 20.
1. Just because you are no longer a teenager, do not assume that you have it all figured out
I loved the idea of being an adult. I liked the concept of being taken more seriously; being able to learn more about myself. Turning 20 was a huge milestone and I thought that with that milestone, I would naturally be better – somehow the confident, independent woman who I dreamt of.
But age is just a number. You have to physically make alternations to incur growth. And sadly, sometimes you see people far older and with far less wisdom.
2. Love is not painful
I think for the longest time, I had no real concept on what love was. My parents lived separate lives until they divorced and I rarely glimpsed the sight of a happy couple.
My education came from reading about passionate affairs in Hollywood. There was a wildly attractive appeal to a couple so enamoured with each other that they couldn’t be apart. And yet when together – train wreck.
I thought true love was drama – you need fireworks and extreme highs and lows. I chased them and unfortunately I found them. Real love is simple – it’s easy, loving and it’s about that person never needing encouragement to contact you, instead of a wild make-out session followed by arguments and tears.
3. You find yourself when you stop looking
With so much importance now placed on writing self-love advice, there is a need to continuously to track down exactly who you are and what you are about.
Occasionally however, you need to stay still for a moment and let your ideas guide you. I always believe that you are supposed to be exactly where you are in the present time. And if you believe in yourself enough, you will always be heading in the right direction.
So stop admiring every other person’s goals and giving yourself a bazillion tasks to complete. Just live in the moment and listen – deep down you always know the right answer.
4. Sex appeal is confidence
Such a cliché, but I finally understand why it has become one. My idea of being sexy was this pure physical notion of a beautiful woman with long hair and great curves – probably wearing miniscule clothing.
And I think that at times it is great to embrace your body and be comfortable with showing skin. But I notice far more – I think it’s sexy to not care what opinions you may hear, it’s sexy loving yourself (in a non-narcissist way) and it is pure sex appeal to own your look unapologetically.
In those ways I believe that I have sex appeal – I am more and more comfortable in embracing my traits. Sex appeal is not earned by the tightest dress you can find and the darkest of eye shadows blended.
5. You will change completely
Because when I turned 20, I thought that was it. I knew my style, my ambitions and I remember looking back at my teenage self and laughing.
How naïve of me – I am 25 and despite a tremendous heap of change in 5 years – I know full well that I am nowhere near being finished. I hardly presume that I will ever be.
6. There is nothing wrong with you
As insecure as I was as a teenager, by the time I reached 20, I was bundled in heaps of self-doubt.
I hated my personality – my shyness, my awkwardness at meeting new people. I wished that I could transform who I was – really I should have just wished to be proud.
7. What your mind can conceive, it can achieve
I talk about fitness profusely. It was a great turning point. My heart-broken and my self-esteem shattered – my mind reflecting a glass smashed and cracked, I had nowhere to turn.
When I then decided to take my health seriously – working out and eating well, weeks go by and miraculously I see definition. There is progress. Not just physical progress – but mentally I realised that I could actually work towards a goal and accomplish it.
This alone made me want to reach in all aspects of my life – perhaps the reasoning for my bravery in creating a blog.
8. You are more fearless than you assume
Would I skydive? – No. Neither would I bungee jump or hold a tarantula – not now anyway.
I have lived a pretty crazy life though – according to my best friend. I have pursued my dreams, ignored the fear that I would not make it and not once gave up.
What self-love advice would you give to yourself at 20 or as a teenager?