Believe in Yourself

Validation. We all need it. But how do we get it?

A lot of us tend to seek it out from other people. It’s hard to value ourselves. It’s hard to be able to see our own self-worth. It’s hard to really trust that we are the best versions of who we can be. So we look to others and if they approve of us, we feel good about ourselves.

But what happens if we do something that people don’t approve of? What if we do something that is a good decision for us but isn’t what others think is the “right” thing to do?

How do we validate our decisions then? How do we feel good about ourselves when the rest of the world tells us we aren’t good?

I honestly don’t know the right answer to these questions.

I know that we should be able to validate ourselves. I know that if we are going to trust others, we should trust the people who have been there for us through everything. Why should we listen to people who don’t know us at our core? Why should we listen to those who don’t understand us or our feelings?

I think that sometimes, we just need to trust ourselves. I didn’t trust my emotions and myself throughout my entire 20s. I thought I was wrong in feeling the way I felt. I tried to change my mindset because I thought that I shouldn’t be feeling the way I did. I thought I wasn’t gracious enough and that I wasn’t good enough. I looked at myself through the lenses of the people around me. I didn’t like what I saw at all. I learned by my late 20s that the problem wasn’t me or the way I felt. My feelings were correct. I needed to change my life around.

So I started doing just that. As I entered my 30s, I learned to trust myself and the way I felt. Once I felt centered, I was able to make friends who really were people that I could really reflect off of. I was able to see myself for who I really was. And they saw me for who I really was.

It isn’t easy to always validate yourself. Once you start believing in yourself and who you are, it gets easier.

Encourage, Not Discourage

I have a friend who posted about working out on Facebook. In her comments section, there were a bunch of comments about how it was funny that she started working out or that they were waiting for her to give up.

Seriously???

Someone is trying to do something good for their own life and whether it will work out or not, why are people discouraging her? Why would you tease someone who was trying to make a positive change in their life?

I don’t know about everyone else but within the Indian community, you do see this a lot. Instead of helping people out, we tend to put people down. We don’t always support others in their dreams or goals. Even when we do seem to support someone, it’s not always real. We end up talking negatively about them behind their backs.

Why do we feel the need to put someone else down? Why is it so hard to just believe in them? Does it matter if we end up being right or wrong?

Just say that someone does quit or doesn’t achieve their goals. Does it make a difference to us? My guess is what that person will remember is your belief in them, in your support for them.

There’s no reason to discourage someone (even if you mean it jokingly). It could really hurt their feelings or prevent them from following their dreams. Even though we think that our words would not have that effect, they might.

Support. Believe. Encourage.

 

Sometimes, It Is What It Is

Have you ever noticed when you don’t have such a good day that you start to wonder what happened? Sometimes, things don’t go well or you have a bad experience or sometimes, it’s just plain boredom that will drive you crazy. 

One of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever received was “You are exactly where you are supposed to be”. This statement reminds me that when I’m struggling with something that there is probably a reason for it. I can usually figure out the reason in hindsight but at the moment, in the moment, I can’t see it at all. Remembering this statement allows me hold onto the idea that at some point, I’ll understand why I’m going through what I’m going through. 

I have these friends who are amazingly strong. They have families, full time jobs, health issues, new businesses, moves, the courage to stand up for themselves, and so much more. I watch them go through struggles where it’s not clear why they have to deal with what they are dealing with. Sometimes, it’s not about dealing with the present. It’s about seeing how it shapes your future. And sometimes, that one step you took to do something or to change something will create the present for you. I see the results their actions bring and it’s amazing how their tenacity has gotten them there. 

Eventually, everything makes sense. Look for one good thing in your present. There is probably a single point that you can trace that back to. And every experience you have had along the way contributed to that good thing. So when things happen and they don’t make sense, just know that this is what it is for right now. Live this moment as today and know it has a bigger purpose. Believe that someday that you will understand the path that has taken you where you will be in the future. 

Oh NO, I’m caring!

As I was writing today’s post, I realized that I needed to start a new one. The reason for that was that I was thinking too much about what if I offend someone or they don’t agree with me. So now, somehow, I am caring what people think about what I write. The purpose of this blog was to bring up issues and thoughts that most people won’t say out loud. I am not supposed to censor myself. But here I am, doing exactly that. So I decided to start over and to write about why should I care what people think.

I want people to enjoy what I’m writing about as well as really start thinking about issues that are brought up in these posts. I forget that it’s not all about how many views you have or how many likes you have just because the numbers make me feel validated. It makes me feel like I’m doing something useful in this world when I see a lot of people liking my posts.

Here’s the thing. I’m not doing this for the numbers. That wasn’t my original goal. I’m doing this to talk about things that hadn’t been talked about. And that includes censoring myself for no reason. That includes most of us censoring ourselves because we think someone might not like us or might criticize us.

Why do we worry so much about this? Yes, we should be discerning and tactful in what we say but at the same time, why are we so worried that someone is immediately going to dislike us because we say what is on our minds? Most likely than not, that person is worrying about what he/she will say rather than what you’re going to say.

We all want to be liked, accepted. There are people that will come into your life and will like you and there are people that will not. This happens to everyone. So maybe we should just be confident in what we are trying to say and say it. We know that our intentions are not bad. If someone takes something the wrong way, they can discuss with you and listen to what you actually meant or they can dislike you for it and walk out of your life. At the end of the day, if someone does not like you for something you said (true or not), it is their problem. As long as you are not intentionally being rude or mean, saying what you’re thinking should not be a huge deal. You are allowed to express yourself.

I have learned over the years that if you worry too much about what you say, things get left unsaid. Sometimes, everyone is thinking it and no one wants to say it. Sometimes, it’s that one thought that crosses one mind that can solve a problem or help someone. Sometimes, it might be that one thing that gets said that prevents a bigger problem from happening. I don’t want to make this sound like you’re saving the world by saying what you’re thinking but I still want you to believe that it might. And it might. All of the great people who have fought for freedom or for change are people who didn’t care what others thought and said what needed to be said.

So believe in yourself. Believe in what you have to say. Believe that your words count.