Even if our body image is in a good place, for some of us, the insecurities still linger. They simply morph.
So it’s no longer fears over a bigger belly but concerns over the perfect prose. It’s no longer wanting smaller thighs but worrying if you’ve said the wrong thing.
Either way, you end up in the same place: growing self-doubt, diminished self-confidence.
You make one mistake, and suddenly you’re a failure. You forget to do something, and you’re a fraud. You don’t understand something, and you’re a wannabe.
It’s amazing how the smallest things can suddenly erase years of work (the work of improving your confidence, self-esteem). This has happened to me countless times.
Some days I desperately wish there was a magic secret to unwavering self-confidence. (If I find it, I’ll let you know.) That there was no more struggle or pain. That self-doubt would slither away. For good.
But, unfortunately and fortunately, there’s always more growing to be done. And in order to learn these powerful lessons, it’s important to cope with “failure” constructively. To move from hating ourselves for making a mistake to seeing “failure” for what it is: a stepping stone to success, a lesson in self-care, an eye-opener for our relationship with ourselves or others. A hundred lessons to be learned.
Failure may not feel good at the time. Often it feels downright painful. But it offers us an opportunity to learn, grow and blossom.
Even if there’s no lesson in sight, there’s always the lesson of choosing to accept ourselves despite the mistake.
Walking hesitantly on the path toward growth and self-acceptance is always better than sprinting to the dark place of self-loathing and destructive thoughts.
How do you deal with failure? What helps you be kind to yourself?
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Last reviewed: 3 Mar 2014