A Thing I’ve Learnt

I feel as though I’m tremendously successful in keeping my personal stuff entirely away from my posts (both here and over on the main beauty site). Mostly thanks to the fact that WordPress has a private post feature, which I use as a sort of a cathartic online diary. They languish along with old reviews in drafts that are never to see the light of day.

But I thought that I’d break rank for the first time to give you another aspect — not least because this is exactly why I have created this not-so-secret diary. A little informal ‘outlet’ where I can write about things that simply would never appear on RatzillaCosme‘s main site.

What I’ve learnt from my mistakes and low points — where I decide to place my identity and how I measure self-worth.

1.) When I measured it by the way I look, I’d immediately get insecure whenever someone more beautiful or has a more “desirable” body figure comes along.

2.) If I put my identity in my work (and my dedication to it), one harsh criticism — even if it’s true — and I’m left questioning whether all the positive feedbacks I have received were nothing but false flattery.

3.) If I place it in my affable, easygoing disposition, I feel a tremendous amount of guilt whenever I go against the grain and say something particularly disagreeable.

4.) When I place it in my good reputation, an attack on that makes me want to hide and obsess over every little thing I’ve ever said.

5.) Finally, when I measure it by the people I love, one bad fight with them can leave me feeling glum and exhausted for days.

In the past, whenever I see terrible comments targeted at me, I’d over analyse every detail of their words and replay them over and over in my head. I had placed my self-worth in my good reputation (#4).

When I’m down and it’s starting to feel a little unhealthy (i.e. I can’t focus, it affects my relationships, etc.), I find it helps to just be aware of what I’m allowing to define my identity at that time. For me, it’s usually one of five that I’ve listed above. This gives me more control and responsibility over my feelings.

Today, I still can’t say that mean comments roll off me like water off a duck’s back, but they don’t bother me as much. I want to be defined by something more wonderful than those hurtful words. And criticism is a huge compliment — it means someone care deeply enough to invest their time and energy. Because my emotions are a choice made entirely by myself. They’re my responsibility. I only have myself to blame (or thank) for how I feel.

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