Thursday, January 28, 2016

Hey there, hotshot! ;)

Self confidence is more than just looking at yourself in the mirror, pointing your finger whilst winking at your reflection and telling yourself "hey there hotshot/sexy beast, looking goooood!" (feel free to still do that though, I'm sure it can't hurt) 

A little while ago, somebody pointed me to an audio questionnaire by Katherine Woodward Thomas with 20 questions about the ability to love yourself. Feeling intrigued after all of the personal development work I do, I took the test. Before I started I thought I had a pretty good idea of the concept of self confidence. I was also convinced that I would score a pretty decent number on it. Because 9 out of 10 days I feel pretty good about myself.

However, after I took the test, the author of this particular test started explaining what truly loving yourself entails. And it is more than what most of us think. Which is why I'd love to share these realizations. 

The author describes three components to achieve self love;
1. Self clarity
Self clarity has to do with knowing who you really are. Reflecting on your true self. Looking at what beliefs and perceptions (perhaps disappointments?) are rooted in your childhood and knowing what is really your own. Being able to see through patterns and deciding what is still helpful and practical at this point in your life. Self clarity is basically the ability to acknowledge your own flaws without feeling less because of them.

2. Self compassion
Self compassion is closely linked with knowing your true value and worth, having an unconditional positive regard for yourself. A deeper rooted acceptance that comes from confronting your own humanity. Because with realizing what is truly your perception and what is not, comes the ability to accept that difference or disagreement and the opportunity to move on and grow. 
With self compassion we can also ask ourselves how we treat others, if we can leave our self judgment behind and give ourselves the same understanding, loyalty, empathy and forgiveness we show others. That allows us to be patient, kind and firm with our true self. 

3. Self care
This is what most people mistakenly define as self confidence. Self care should simply be the icing on the cake, but in its core is not enough to give you true self love. It is merely the evidence of your self love. Think of this as watering the flowers, feeding yourself to be able to give to others. 

After working through these three components I started asking myself some of those questions. What values are truly my own, which of the ones that I took from my parents are no longer functional for me at this point in my life. Who is the true me. Am I as kind to myself as to others. 

It took me some time to work through these questions. But now that I have, I can say that I find this theory or article to be right. I worked through the layers to get to the core. And after having done so, I would wish this on everyone. To be able to stand in front of that mirror in the morning and to not have to fake anything with a wink or a pointed finger, but to look at yourself and see the true you. And for you to find that person ok. More than ok; absolutely amazing. 

If we love ourselves, isn't the rest simply icing on the yummy cupcake? 

Ps. If you're interested in the audio questionnaire to see how much or how deeply you truly love yourself, click the link below to listen to Katherine herself.