As someone with tendencies toward people pleasing, perfectionism, and being the good girl, I've struggled a lot with self-acceptance and self-love. The overwhelming narrative in my head has been around how I can be better, be different than who I am right now. "If only I…" was a common thought for me. If only I was prettier, boys would like me. If only I was better at English, I could get an A. If only I could dance. If only I had a better voice so I could sing. I got so lost in the If onlys and in trying to be someone I thought I was supposed to be, that I lost track of who I was and what I wanted.
I began to wonder who I'd be if I let go of the If onlys. I began to read and was inspried by the words of Elizabeth Gilbert, Brené Brown, Glennon Doyle, and Nadia Bolz-Webber. These women who talked about how shaming ourselves doesn't get us anywhere but more pain, and how true belonging requires embracing who we are. Some speak of forgiveness and how we as humans make mistakes. And the resiliency of being able to brush ourselves off and start again.
As I looked at the stories, the If onlys, I began to see how they made sense. And I noticed how when I accepted them and met them with understanding, I began to shift. I could see how those patterns kept me safe (or tried to). I could see how they helped me cope. And I could find love for that part of me that created those stories. I'm slowly finding peace, love, and new ways of being. I'm building belonging to myself.
I also notice how as I learn to accept and love all the pieces of myself, how much more I'm able to do the same for others. How I can see the sense behind my children's behavior. How I can accept other viewpoints. That love for myself seems to spill out to others.
I think this has a big impact on who I am as a coach. The same curiosity, acceptance, and love I bring to myself, I share with my clients. The endeavor to make my coaching space a tranquil welcoming place to meet yourself. A place where all of you is welcome, where all of you is loved and accepted.
You see, I don't think we can build real lasting change in our lives without acceptance and love. We can't access the best of who we are if we can't look at all of ourselves and find love.
What parts of you do you have trouble loving? Can you get curious about where they came from and their reason for being? Can you begin to see how they made sense at one point in your life?
If you would like support with exploring these questions, I would love to hold space for you in a coaching series. Together we will get curious, open space for acceptance and love, and work to build new stories and new patterns to support you in working towards your goals. Book a FREE exploratory call to get started.