A lesson I learned the hard way was to put my feelings first before everyone else’s.
I’ve been a bit of a pushover my entire life, always wanting to please everyone, and always aiming to be good at everything. I was 100% perfectionist. It wasn’t until I was in my second year of University that I realized I wasn’t always going to be succeed, and then my world came crashing down. After becoming mentally unwell, my physical wellness deteriorated even more rapidly than it had before.
I was not in a good place until I learned that my feelings were important. I had to start saying no to the things that made me supremely uncomfortable, even though there was societal pressure on me. There are still some people that are incredibly important to me, for whom I would bend over backwards, but generally, I have managed to take my thoughts into account before making any serious actions.
I now have so much free time as a result of being stuck at home with my illness, and it has allowed me to focus on finding the things that I love: writing, health activism, art, and fashion. Before two years ago, I wouldn’t have even been able to tell you what I liked, because all I knew were the things I could do well. Little did I know, putting so much pressure on myself to perform at things I didn’t even remotely care about was detrimental to my health.
Now I try to keep myself comfortable and surround myself with things and people that I love. I can’t say that my life has improved drastically in terms of health, but it certainly has in terms of mental stability. It is a lesson that took a long time to learn, but will make my life more meaningful as a result.
What have you learned the hard way??