self-care / part 5: accepting your flaws & setting goals for change

self-care series
((part five of eight))

i've always considered myself to be self-aware, which for me also includes being incredibly insecure. i have memories of being very young, looking in the mirror, and only seeing things i wished i could change. 

still not a day goes by that i don't think about the smallest details of me that i wish were different. but what good can come from just sitting around thinking these thoughts? really, i'm only slowly sipping at poison.

so while i'm working on taking care of myself, i thought about how i could grab onto these thoughts as though they're balloons, let some go, and take others and shape them into something beautiful. 

while these words are so often thrown around, they hold a life changing amount of truth: nobody's perfect. a human is a human, we all struggle and suffer and cry and wish we could change. 

so let's take that desire for change and let it fuel a fire of love and passion within us. let's find what we have the power to change and set realistic goals to change them. emphasis on realistic. 

if you wish had a different sleep schedule, that you could wake up earlier than noon on your days off, maybe don't set your alarm for 6am and expect a change overnight. or if you are wanting to cut back on sugar, it doesn't always work to eliminate it completely the next day. for some people the extreme change can be what they need. in my experience, i try and make these big changes and when i don't see results right away, i give up. most often, i think gradually easing into change can be the best thing. 

sometimes the first step is asking for help. it's hard to make changes alone. this can be as simple as going to a dermatologist for your acne, or as big as asking help for an addiction. accountability is so important. 

if you look in the mirror and wish your teeth were whiter, allow yourself to budget in whitestrips from the grocery store. you deserve it. it can be little things like this that we constantly think about being different, but don't take the step to change them, maybe because we don't feel that we deserve that extra care. i'm telling you now that you do. 

so we've identified some things that we have control over in our lives. what about the things that we don't? this is the bane of existence, but it's an eternal truth. we'll never have full control. there are some things about ourselves that, realistically, aren't in our control to change. these things are mostly appearance-related for me. 

so maybe there are things about the way you look that could be fixed by plastic surgery or extreme measures, but this isn't entirely realistic for you. i don't love my nose, but i don't plan to go under the knife any time soon, so instead of dwelling on it, the healthiest thing for me to do is accept that it's the face i was given, and focus on parts of it that i love. i do love my eyes, so when i start to think about what i don't like, switch gears in my mind to what i do. 

nobody's perfect. we all have things about ourselves that we wish were different. it can be easy to think that everyone is looking at you and only seeing flaws. maybe you do struggle with comparison and looking at people around you with a critical eye. i've found a practice that helps with this: if i'm in line at a grocery store or sitting in a busy mall, i'll look at each person near me and think about the lovely things about them. i notice the woman in front of me has beautiful hair, and the young girl walking by has a warm and lovely smile. this can be a way to train your brain to notice the beauty first. as you're doing that with others, you can start doing it with yourself. and if you get a chance, tell the person what you think is beautiful. compliments can truly make someone's day and possibly help with their own insecurities. 

know that your soul is so special and so valuable and so much more than the skin surrounding it. you are strong and have the power to make peoples' lives better, and what is more beautiful than that? 


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  1. Ashley, your blog posts always help me so much. Thank you for creating this space and helping others.

  2. this was beautiful, I would love for everyone to read these series and try these little things you're recommending.

  3. I have been struggling with body image issues and your post gave me a lot of motivation to change things up in my life. Thank you for the tips.

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