In my recent search for the lost part of me, I'm realizing that as much as I want to complete this journey in a few giant strides, it really requires baby steps to get to the finish line; one baby step at a time. And since I have always struggled with patience, this was not a conclusion I wanted to come to. But it is what it is.
I have, however, already learned something about myself. It may not necessarily have come as a complete surprise to me -- nor may it be all that different from a lot of you out there -- but I did make myself dig a little deeper into the 'why' of it. Are you ready for it?
I need to feel accepted.
See? No big suprise right? We all desire to feel loved and accepted. But I began to realize how much that desire actually impacts my life. And how often I get hurt because of it.
As I have mentioned several times in the past, my primary love language is definitely -- without a doubt -- words of affirmation (click here to take the test to figure our your own love language). This means that I feed off of people's compliments, encouragement and affirmation. I don't (as much) need people to give me a hug or to bring me a gift -- although those are all great things too. I need to hear people say positive things about me and I need to know that these people want to spend time with me.
I know it's silly -- but I want to be everybody's first choice. I want everybody to tell me how wonderful and special I am, and how much they love hanging out with me. I want to be everybody's best friend. I know it's not realistic, but that's just the way it is. So when I don't get included in absolutely everything that goes on, or when I feel that somebody likes somebody else more than me, I get hurt. I'm not getting that verbal affirmation that I crave.
I am also a peace-maker who doesn't like it when anybody is upset with me. Even if I feel like the other person should be making the first move to make things right, I will often go out of my way to make sure that things get patched up. It may mean that I apologize for something that I honestly don't feel was wrong, or to take responsibility for something that I don't believe was my fault. But in the end -- to get things fixed and have that person happy again is all that matters to me. Being as stubborn as I am, this comes as a bit of a surprise. But that just goes to show how important it is to me to have people like me.
While these realizations may not be entirely negative, I do feel like I need to 'get a grip' and gain some more confidence in myself.
I need to remind myself that I am affirmed in God's eyes. I need to remember that I am loved by my husband, my daughters, my family and my many friends.
And I need to realize that I am not everybody's best friend. And that it's okay. Just because I am not everyone's favorite, it doesn't mean that I am not loved.
While I don't necessarily want to change this part of me (I think there are many positives to being more on the sensitive side), I do want to challenge myself to fine-tune it. And I want to end up being as confident in myself as the woman in this picture looks -- without relying on my 'cravings' to get me there.