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January 3, 2016

If I’m Being Honest

kindnessquote{illustration: Jen B. Peters}

Hello friends and HNY! I know it’s been awhile since I’ve written something personal. After a life-changing adventure in India then holidazzling for days, I sort of couldn’t find my blogging bearings in all of the emotion and commotion. It’s a familiar challenge for me, overwhelm followed by total paralysis. The dirty little secret that I’ve eluded to here and here but never fully admitted to anyone, including a therapist (ummmmm), is that I am not very kind to myself. I’ve been living a lie in this department, albeit one that looks very loving and even luxurious from the outside. It goes something like this: When I feel sad/lonely/tired/confused/depressed I have a way of piling on more trips, more massages, more happy hours and more projects to make myself feel happy and productive. Instead, I wind up anxious, exhausted, and utterly depleted on a soul level. I am only now starting to take seriously my need to slow down and be still, not as an experiment or a resolution, but as essential to my well-being. In order to carve out this time for rest and reflection, I will face the biggest challenge of them all: Believing that I’m worthy of self-love for no reason other than I exist. With rare exception (and oh, these are the most joyous, peaceful days), I’ve been living in a way that only values my career achievements. When I’m not high as a kite on one of those, I start judging myself to the point of abuse. I hate myself for not being more successful, for not knowing EXACTLY what I want to do next and EXACTLY how I’m going to do it, and for not having all of the skills, knowledge and contacts I need to change the world. Yeah. There it is. Just typing that makes my skin crawl it sounds so crazy and self-destructive. For the record, I DO go through most days with a smile on my face, and it is genuine because I’m so grateful for the amazing people in my life. But inside I feel like a failure. Rationally, I know that’s ridiculous. I don’t think anyone else is a failure. I don’t care what anyone else does for a living. I care about how they treat and interact with others, the energy that they share with the world, the way that they love. But as you can see, I am yet to convince myself that I deserve that same respect. This is where I begin 2016, with full awareness of the ways in which I hold myself back from living and loving and just being. Wish me luck and please, share your own story below if it feels right. Those help more than you know!

XOXO,
Bets

  • Elizabeth Dehn
    ABOUT ELIZABETH
    Born and raised in Minnesota by surprisingly low-maintenance parents, beauty writer and lifestyle editor Elizabeth Dehn (aka Bets) spent her awkward years buying Mood lipstick and whipping up DIY face masks before founding Beauty Bets in 2009.
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