Life After Undergrad: Love yourself like you mean it

Three words, eight letters, say it like you mean it. No, I’m not talking about telling your kids or significant other that you love them every chance you get (though you should because life is short). No, I’m talking about reminding yourself that you love who you are unapologetically, every day. Self-love is the foundation for every other type of love we have in our lives, and it’s arguably the most important. For years in our adolescents (and sometimes beyond) we critiqued everything about our appearance, tried to be thinner, more athletic, have better skin, and so on; but now we’re adults and how many of us can say those habits haven’t followed us far into our 20s? I can admit that it followed me, and haunted me brutally after I had my daughter Ava, I couldn’t understand why I got such bad stretch marks, why I didn’t “snap back” and why that baby weight hung around for 10 months.

In all of this self-doubt we forget to love the good parts, how kind we are, how organized we can be, how good we are at crossword puzzles or Sudoku. Every morning I used to wake up and think of all the things I HAD to do, run through a mental list of these tasks that I had to check off and complete; but more recently I’ve started ignoring that mental list and finding positives like, today’s weather is going to be beautiful, I can’t wait to do _______ or just reminding yourself that you’ve got this. When you wake up feeling like you’ve got a handle on things and not the other way around you just feel better.

I’m far from perfect and I know I have my flaws but I’m slowly learning to turn even those into strengths, I’m learning to share, to let people help and most of all to trust in my abilities and what I can do. I try to face challenges or setbacks with poise and patience and not feel like everything has gone to shit because when I let that feeling of panic take over I ended up creating problems that weren’t there to begin with. Everyone has a new year new me goal (if you say you don’t- you sir are a liar!) even if they don’t broadcast it to the world and you know what; good for you. You owe it to yourself to be the best version of yourself that you know how to be—and love the crap out of yourself while doing it!

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