I’ve been holding back all of my life. Trying to fit an impossible mold that changes depending on who I’m with and what they think. I remember staying true to myself, when black was my favorite color in fifth grade. I saw the strange looks and the uncomfortable laughs and didn’t try to take it back. But as I grew up, I changed it to blue: a more common favorite color.

A small favorite color change is seemingly insignificant until it snowballs into a larger problem. The more tiny changes I made, the less I recognized who I was. I became less decisive and more afraid of showing up in an honest way. I wanted to remain small and quiet until people liked me because of how agreeable I was. 

It sounded like a good plan, to agree with people and get them to like me. Until I woke up and realized that I didn’t remember what I liked about myself. I became the “great girl” that everyone wanted me to be and forgot whose opinion mattered the most: my own.

Why do we seek friends that don’t know the real us? Why are we afraid to speak our truth and attract the people who like what our souls genuinely have to say? Are we that afraid of being judged?

It’s important to treat yourself with respect. To live as your authentic self and only change through growth and excitement for the person you want to become. Because at the end of the day, if people don’t like you, they aren’t your people. 

So be the person you want to be friends with. Find fulfilling relationships by being your true self and hang out with the people that love that true identity. The more respect you show yourself, the more joy you’ll find in life. The more you let go of people who don’t like what you have to offer, the more room you have for the people who love what you have to say. 

In the words of Brooke Castillo:

“You could be the juiciest peach, but there’s always going to be somebody that doesn’t like peaches.”

Don’t live in fear of other people’s opinions. Allow them to decide whether they like you or not. And don’t let their opinion determine your worth.

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