There are a lot of beautiful people, on the inside and outside, in my life.
Sometimes I wish I had some of their qualities.
I wish I had Dibet Wilkinson’s eyes. (insert girl with beautiful eyes)
I wish I had Carly Bandt’s hair. (insert girl with beautiful hair)
I wish I had Callie Fry’s facial structure. (insert girl with beautiful face)
I wish I had William Ball’s smile. (insert guy with perfect smile).
I wish I could sing like Luul Lampkins (insert girl with beautiful voice).
I wish I could be as joyful as Amir Williams (insert girl who brightens a room).
I wish I had the patience of Jack Dolgin (insert kind, understanding guy).
But today I realized a few things: In “wishing” that I had something of someone else, I was dissing myself. This “wishing” was really jealousy in denial.
In spending so much time wishing I had other people’s inner and outer qualities, I am beginning to lose who I am.
When I focus on wanting someone else’s intelligence, I give up on assignments that are totally within my mental capabilities. When I wish I had someone else’s smile, I stop smiling all together. When I wish I had straight here, I stop wearing my hair naturally curly. When I wish I was more inspiring, I start second-guessing this blog.
Somehow I stopped loving myself so much that I started to wish I was someone else, or, lots of someone elses.
So here’s what I’ve discovered. You can love aspects of other people without hating yourself in the process and you can even incorporate the things you love about other people into your own unique qualities.
I am inspired by the authors of great books I read, and then I create my own words.
I am inspired by the fashion sense of my best friend, and then I wear my own clothes in my own way.
I am inspired by the accomplishments of the students around me, and then I am able to step back and be awed.
To rid ourselves of jealousy we must love the individuality and freedom that comes from being our own unique people. And we must love ourselves.
I know it can be hard to love ourselves in a society that constantly tells us to hate ourselves.
Every day I’m told that I’m supposed to be skinner (that’s why I keep hearing about fad diets), that I’m supposed to be prettier (that’s why I keep hearing about makeup brands), that I’m supposed to be smarter (that’s why I keep getting asked how I’m ‘academically challenging myself’).
But you know what, no. All that we’re “supposed to be” is ourselves. And not just “be” ourselves; we’re supposed to love ourselves.
So I’m through “wishing” I was someone else. Because I’m not them. I’m Hope Arcuri. And I love it.
Who are you?