“ You Deserve Happiness Even If You’re Not Used To It ” – Unknown
When I was younger, life used to feel so perfect. I had everything that a person needs to have a perfect life. My loving and rich parents, a beautiful sister, good food, a roof over my head, everything.
I remember the days when I used to quarrel with my siblings or got scolded by my mom for not eating my meals or by my teacher for not preparing my lessons. Some days I cried. But, there was still something precious that I miss today.
The younger me wasn’t afraid to cry out when hurt or embarrassed to laugh loudly. Because,
after all, that ugly smile was real.
Ah… Those beautiful days. I wish everything would be the same. But, the situation changes.
I never thought that the same me who was so excited to grow up would regret it.
As I grew up, I realized that it’s actually illegal to cry or express emotions when hurt. It’s illegal to have failures. It’s illegal not to look pretty. Even being different emotionally was also a crime.
Not to mention, what a big crime it was to protest and also smile loudly. No one really cared if the smile was even real. When I was younger, I cared a lot. But, at a time, it felt like caring was actually the real secret of unhappiness.
I still remember the day when one of my relatives called out my mom to take care of my appearance. Otherwise, my skin color and short height could create problems. And yet, she was right.
I remember the days when I was mocked for my appearance. Those days are way too many to count. At one point, when I was in my only 5th or 6th grade, I stopped going to school. I would
never face my classmates unless there was an exam.
Even my tuition teacher also didn’t avoid the chance of laughing and making jokes about my big nose among all his other 60 students in the room.
I’m pretty sure the jokes were really funny. Even I myself laughed at them several times knowing I was dying inside. At one point, it became a real mental problem for me.
I hated looking at the mirror. Tried to cut my body several times. Irritating my little sibling by asking her if I was beautiful just to hear that one magical line “you’re beautiful”.
My obsession with seeming perfect didn’t stop here. It reflected on every part of my life. I started reframing my life with the definitions given by other people.
When I cried, they would say that I was trying to gain sympathy. So, I started trying to be
emotionless. I knew taking everything to my heart would only cause more pain. So, I stopped caring.
The day, when I was out of the viva test of my dream institution for mostly being an introvert, I thought being an introvert was a crime.
After several years of pushing and changing, at one point, I felt the real pain.
I was emotionally detached, careless and a perfectionist. Also a person suffering from extreme body image issues.
I forgot to smile.
I felt like I had lost a part of me. Which made me even more depressed about myself. Suddenly, I started missing the younger me.
The change was supposed to bring something good, right? Then why did it happen?
After days of feeling restless and broken mentally, I finally took the decision of finding myself again.
And that was actually the best decision I ever took. Here are some tips that I used to find myself again and you can use too if you’re feeling lost.
1. Going back to the time and finding where I actually lost It
What would you do if you lost something valuable? Most possibly you would try searching in those places where you think you could lose them. And doing the same, I found myself.
I tried reanalyzing the times that added to the change I have today. Or, at least it had a really
strong effect on me. I made a diary to record them. It was impossible to remember every one of them.
But for those I could remember, firstly I memorized how it affected me. Then, I figured out how I could react, do or think about the circumstances differently.
Perhaps, I wouldn’t feel so lost today if I would use the alternative ways.
2. Writing letters to my past self
When I was craving for my past self and was trying to found myself, I started looking out for every single opportunity I could have to connect with myself.
One of them was letter writing. Even though I can never really send that letter, at least it was worth the effort. There, I talked about the beautiful days I spent and how I’ve become now.
It felt like I was writing to one of my friends that I hadn’t seen for a while. And this process helped me to let my emotions be out and express them in a much easier way.
3. Building good relation with parents and kids
As I became emotionally detached, I lost my connection with my parents too. I would feel
nervous or bad when they were around. I didn’t like talking with them much or at all.
Though, all the parents are not understanding and worth building connections with. But, after all, I decided to give it a go. I decided to bring the days back when they were nothing less than my friends hoping that it could make me happy.
And it really did work. At first it must be hard trying to rebuild a relationship that already felt broken.
But, I tried. I talked about all of my bad feelings about my parents and why I felt them. It took a lot of courage really. But, finally after days and hours of talking sessions with them, it really showed the impact.
Also Kids taught me things like seeing beauty in smaller things or smiling and forgiving. So building a good bond with them also helped me a lot to found myself.
4. Accepting my imperfections
I accepted all of my flaws so that I could found myself. I accepted that just like every one, I am not perfect too and I stopped being one.
It took me a while to do that. But, what it really brought me was something precious. I wasn’t feeling bad anymore when anyone would mock me. Instead, I protested. Not pretending to be someone who is perfect, but actually trying to elaborate that I was already good with all my
imperfections and who I was.
Also Read : My Story with Body Insecurity
5. Forgiving and cutting out some connections at the same time
Forgiveness has always been considered as a massive power and I decided to give it a go. It
felt like letting go could really stop the fire within me from burning.
And it really did.
I forgave all those people who gave me bad experiences. I stopped allowing myself to stress over the things given by the people who were not with me anymore.
But, at the same time, I couldn’t let myself hangout with negative people and create more bad experiences.
So, I cut out some connections. At first, doing this felt so awful. But, building a healthy boundary is definitely a big potential to become happy.
6. I decided to be happy in a new way
I realized that I was not my younger self anymore. Years had passed and change was vital.
Having massive changes along the years doesn’t mean that it’s impossible to be happy again.
So, instead of pushing myself to become the one I was, I decided to have a fresh start. Trying to be happy with who I am and with the new positive surroundings around me.
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Final Thoughts :
It feels so disappointing and empty when you feel like you’ve lost yourself. I know the frustration.
If you ever feel the pain, take these steps.
But, most importantly, believe in yourself that you can. You can be happy again no matter how much time it takes. As someone who had gone through this phase for a long time, I can totally feel you.
I’m not here to give away unrealistic motivations like “it’s just all in your head” or “you’re already happy enough” or “these feelings don’t exist at all.” It’s totally okay to feel in that way.
What I can say is that, things will get better and one day, you’ll feel okay again
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These are some great tips. It’s always hard when you lose yourself. I always try to look at the positives now when things are tough.
This is something I think many go through. It’s nice to know that I am not alone and there are resources available to help.
This is interesting, I like the idea of achieving a timeline to getting yourself back. I will definitely keep this in mind.
I can relate to this as I lost myself to my addiction to alcohol. I’m not eleven years sober and I’ve finally found peace and it was because I used some of these same methods. Great post!
This resonated with me because I have been in a similar situation. At such times, it can feel like the darkness will never end and it is easy to just give up. But taking the necessary steps to get back on track and following your own path is essential to being truly happy. It takes time and effort, but if you believe in yourself, nothing is impossible! That’s why it’s important to be kind to yourself and accept that these feelings are normal. Keep up the great writing!
Writing letters to your past self is a great way to forgive yourself and move forward. Great other tips here!
I can totally relate to this. I’m sure a lot of us have felt like losing ourselves but there is always a way to come back and get up again.
This is such a wonderful post. I love everything about this, especially writing letters to your past self.
This is such a thoughtful and motivating post. I appreciate your ideas, thoughts, reflection, and tips. Great post!
This is a really wonderful post. Learning how to accept our own imperfections is really important.
You’ve been through such a profound experience. How we are raised can really make or break us. Good for you for rising above and becoming even stronger because of it all.
We all deserve and need to be happy. Happiness can be different and I am glad that you found your way to it!
What a beautiful and inspirational post. Good for you for being so strong and pushing through. Finding yourself and growing yourself is hard work.
Great post! Thanks for sharing!
This is such a thoughtful post – thanks for sharing these tips. Writing letters to your past self is a great idea.
Loving yourself is a hard lesson to learn. Your post resonated with me and I wish I could give you a hug right now! Stay strong.
These are awesome tips. Thanks for sharing your experiences. I find that accepting our imperfections is difficult but one of the most important things we can do for ourselves.
Love this. We all change and need to recognise that so we can try and be happy with it. Excellent to read you’ve come back stronger – inspirational.
Ah yes! I love this journey for you. It was a long journey but worth-while.
Great post! I found your tips very helpful and will definitely use some of them in my own growth journey. Thank you for being vulnerable and sharing! We need honest voices like yours among influencers who make self-improvement seem like an easy game.
Accepting imperfections is a must. Noone is perfect, we need to learn and accept as long as the habits are not harming anyone, including yourself.
What a vulnerable and touching post. I really like a lot of wisdom here – especially writing letters to your past self. Your post shows so much bravery and courage. Thanks for sharing!
It’s hard to be singled out in our youth. I am a teacher and I see the toll it takes on kids. It’s hard to convince them of their value. They believe what kids are saying instead of the truth and they put a lot of merit on it.
I’m glad that you were able to find yourself after all of the pain and loss of self, and thank you for sharing your wealth in knowledge in it.
These are such relatable points. I think we have all struggled with some of these things and realized at a point in our lives that we needed to make some changes.
One of the side effects of adulthood is (sometimes) we lose a great part of ourselves, sadly that includes our childhood. I lost mine years ago and I felt unhappy. However, I took a leap of faith and chose to focus on myself and find the happiness that I lost. Happy to share that I claimed it back before it’s too late.
I don’t care what others think, the important is I am happy and the people in my circle see it.
I lost myself amongst my abusive marriage. It’s been 4 years and I keep finding things I gave up for staying to long in that marriage. I am happier not but at times I still have bouts of those old feeling resurfacing. I’m still scared of someone loving me again. But with more healing and finding me, one day I’m sure it will happen.
I understand… Many of us had been there so we can relate. However, the letter writing yourself if most effective.
Greetings! Very helpful advice within this post! It’s the little changes that produce the largest changes. Thanks for sharing!