As many of you know by now, I struggled a lot in my teens and early 20s, I struggled with confidence, low self-esteem, anorexia and self-harm. A great deal of my wanting to be a coach who helps people with self-worth and self-care has come from these experiences.
Sometimes I feel like what I write here are the words I would have loved my younger self to read. So today I thought I would just go ahead and pen a letter to her.
She’s scared, hopeless and unsure. She hates herself in every way imaginable. She feels like she doesn’t fit anywhere and as if she has nothing to offer the world. She fears she’ll never be loved and that this feeling of self-hatred will never leave her.
Dear younger self,
I know you feel invisible right now and sometimes you wish you were, but I’m here to say I see you. I see your pain, your scars and your fear. You can’t see it, but you are surrounded by people who love you and care for you, don’t shut them out.
Your body is frail, but I promise you one day it will be strong, soft and happy. Your mind is even frailer, but again, just you wait. It will surprise you with its resilience, strength and sheer power.
You think no man will ever love you – you think beauty is skin deep. This isn’t your fault, society has taught you this, but I also want to let you in on a secret… this is a lie. There is so much more to you that the shape of your body or the arrangement of your features. It’s your soul that shines with beauty, nothing else.
When you get older, you’ll see this. The boxes people are trying to fit in right now will explode before your very eyes. You’ll open those eyes one day and see everything differently.
When this happens, you’ll stop waging a war on your body. You’ll eat again without guilt. I know it sounds impossible right now, but you’ll eat what you want, when you want and feel joy at every mouthful.
You’ll see your body change and, one day, you’ll finally stop caring. You’ll love the softness of your curves, the way your hair falls and the sense of freedom you never thought you’d have.
You’ll make friends with your mind and learn how to survive. You’ll fight back against the raging voice so determined to tear you down.
Eventually, it will leave you and will be replaced with a cheerleader, encouraging you to keep going, even when something scares you.
You’ll find your voice and gain confidence to speak up. You’ll fall in love. Relationships will start and relationships will end. You’ll learn what you need from a partner and refuse to settle for anything less. You’ll find someone who loves every inch of you, including your flaws.
You’ll discover your passions and find work that fulfils you. You’ll get curious about what you have the power to be and you won’t let self-doubt hold you back.
Your friendships will flourish as you surround yourself with people who truly light you up. You’ll learn how to take care of yourself and how to connect with others.
What you’re going through is awful, but it’ll mould you and shape you into someone with incredible strength and compassion.
You’ll help people in so many different ways – you’ll discover your purpose here.
You have so much light and love inside of you, I can see it from here. Keep writing, keep breathing and I promise everything will be OK.
I can’t wait for you to get here, to the other side of self-hate. It’s a wonderful place… in fact, it’s so wonderful you’ll end up dedicating your career to helping others join you here, to share in its beauty.
With love, hope and endless support,
Your future self xx
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