Vanity, How It Can Rob You of Your Life
By Robird's Words
Published on 04/17/2012
Don't let your self image prevent you from enjoying your life.

Vanity and How it Robs You of Your Joy in Life Have you ever been someplace where everyone was having fun and your were trapped on the sidelines by your own low self image? Are you overweight, is your nose to big, or is there some other kind of physical trait that you are not happy with within yourself. What if you knew that almost everyone has something that they struggle with? Could you accept yourself a little easier then? We think if we were only a little thinner, a little taller, a little younger, then we would be comfortable diving in and being a part of the fun. I can tell you about my first hand experience of how having a negative body image affected my life and how I work at freeing myself from it on a regular basis. When I was younger I was quite overweight. I couldn’t go to the beech and be comfortable like many of my friends. Everyone was water skiing, swimming, and sunning themselves on the decks, while I hid off out of site. I dreaded these gatherings and formed an intolerance for the sun and beech. As years went on I lost all the weight, but the insecurities remained. No matter how good of shape I got into there was always something about myself that wasn’t good enough. My legs were to heavy, my hair to curly, my skin to white, and nothing seemed to ever be worthy of exposure. Later I married and had two children and I did force myself to enjoy a few water sports and come out of hiding every now and then. I often thought back on all the fun times I had missed by worrying about how I looked. I never realized that the only person who ever cared about how I looked was me. I kept my self covered up and was hiding basically from myself. These self created prisons we put ourselves in rob us of all the fun times in our lives. I encourage you to live life. Enjoy everything and never say no because of vanity. The harsh judgement we hold against ourselves makes us falsely believe that every one else is looking at us in the same way. In reality the only people judging are the ones who have the same issues we do. It won’t be easy to let go and not let your view of yourself prevent you from having fun, especially the first few times. Every hurtful experience you have ever had in the past will have joined, making it very difficult for you overcome. You might say, “But, I really don’t like the way I look.” That may be true, but the reality is when you are by yourself you are fine, it’s when you worry about how others view you that it becomes a problem. Often times the view of ourselves is very distorted and inaccurate. It starts out as just a slight dislike and we allow it to grow in it’s control over us. It becomes bigger, louder, and finally inhibits our ability to live a full life. Often times the people close to us can’t understand what it is that we are so concerned with. There are many beautiful models and attractive people who have low self images. Just as there are many average to not so good looking people who have very high self images. What’s the difference? Clearly this is an issue within the ourselves and one that we can correct. Most often the most damaging behavior comes by making comparisons. Check yourself regularly to see if this is something you have a habit of. Do you see someone who has beautiful skin and think to yourself, I wish my skin looked like that? Do you see someone with beautiful, flowing, thick hair, and think, my hair is nothing like that? Do you see someone with a lean, beautiful, body and think, I can’t go swimming because I don’t look like that. These are just a few thoughts that at one time or another most of us have had. So what can we do to positively affect how we feel about ourselves? Remember that beauty is to be admired and not envied. Enjoy and compliment all traits that you find to be attractive in another and yourself. Know this, that beauty is in the eye of the beholder and what one considers beautiful may not be so beautiful to another. Understand that everyone one has talents, gifts, and unique traits. For some it is beauty, for others it is intellect, and the list goes on. Finally, here is the question to pose to yourself that will change everything about how you feel about you. If you could trade yourself in tomorrow for someone else would you? If you could have that hair, that face, that skin, that body, and give up yourself, would you do it? The answer to that question every time is no. It is in this moment that you realize you really do love yourself and that nothing that anyone else has would be worth trading for. That you are unique, special, and one of a kind. Now you can let go of all those hang ups and all those things that prevent you from doing everything you want to do in life, because you just remembered that you have a gift to the world and that gift is you, just the way you are.