I can already tell that you guys are rolling your eyes at me. And yet, you clicked on the article, so you're ready to be convinced. Well, I'm only too happy to oblige in reminding everyone present that there is a Person for everyone out there. Not necessarily a one-size-fits-all soulmate that aligns perfectly with every aspect of your being. You don't even know yourself yet, so how could we expect someone else to?
What I'm saying is, we've all been so enduringly taught to subscribe to the need to find flaws in ourselves. Basically, any deviation from what has been established as the norm (straight white, rich male) is painted unalterably as a flaw. Sometimes, the flaw can be fixed; solved with some capitalistic consumption and confidence. Other times, however, we absorb into our personality a defence mechanism whereby we can protect ourselves with self-deprecating humour and a tendency towards isolating ourselves when things get hard. As a result of all of this, many of us have been conditioned to view our flaws as things people can use against us.
Weaknesses that make us unloveable or undesirable, or fundamentally unworthy.
Hang tight, dear readers, because I'm about to go on a deep dive into everyone's diary entries from 2012 to present… "I'm not good enough. Attractive enough. No one will ever know me. No one will ever love me"
Sound familiar? Don't worry, we all had that grunge emo phase where the world didn't make sense and we didn't know who or what we were in relation to the big machine of socio-economic players. To be quite frank, I probably don't fully know who I am even today. What I do know, is that love is out there, always. It's not a finite resource, the fact that other people have it with different traits to you doesn't mean that it's not there for you too. Like Karl Marx said, 'seize the means of love'. Well, something like that. I didn't major in economics, lol. But you get my drift.
I know that it's what's written on all the guidance counsellor's inspirational posters in your high school. I do know this. However, I have nonetheless elected to title my article today on that very statement. Do what scares you. Why, you ask?
Because we still haven't done it yet, for the most part.
Most of us, myself included, still have much to learn. when I was feeling really down a year or two ago, I explicitly remember watching a trashy nameless rom-com on Netflix and they said something that really changed the way I go about my daily life. You have to be willing to fall flat on your face and fail. For all of you perfectionists and 'never enough' out there, I hear you. I feel for you. I am one of you, through and through. That said, this statement was damning, even in that knowledge. I thought I was getting better at being vulnerable and putting myself out there and ensuring that I was living my life to the fullest – even without the bounds of my comfort zone. Apparently not.
One way to feel at home in your life is to stop living other people's lives. Or trying to achieve their goals.
Or live on their terms. It will never satisfy you.
Right, so now that we've tried a few things here and there that tickle our fancy and we've settled to a way we may take that hobby or interest further. In the back of your mind you know that it would be fun to try sky-diving. You probably also know that you need to tell the person you like that you actually do like them, rather than just admiring them from a distance and giving no other indication of affection other than stolen glances.
You may even realise that you should move out. Or move in. or leave the country. Or come back. Maybe you just want to go to a night class and get your GED. But because we put these things off for so long, they have become part of our brain and register only as something inaccessible, impossible and unachievable. Brace yourself for another cheesy guidance counsellor poster message. Ready?
Since when did being impossible stop us from doing anything?
We also decimate our own self worth in the way we dismiss our talents – the very talents that everyone around us can see, clear as day. We forget that not everyone can write as well as we can, or that people can't memorise facts just at the drop of a hat. Indeed, all of the skills in the humanities or arts seem to be ignored as just basic skills, or things that we all should have anyway. Moreover, in areas where we may be less talented or capable, it's viewed as a flaw or as though we are unintelligent. In reality, different people offer different things, but certain scientific or mathematical skills are just valued higher than others. But note that everyone wants different things.
Therefore, it stands to reason that, even though you may express your emotions or affection in a certain way, other people might be sending you signals of interest right back but you just don't recognise them for what they are. As such, we are blinded by our own perceptions. But the perception that we aren't valid isn't our perception at all. It's one foisted upon us. Leave that behind, friends.
Let me put the matter to bed, once and for all.
You are worthy of being loved, and you will be. Period
Have faith that you're going in the right direction and try not to overthink your life 'too' much.
Easier said than done, I know that better than most.