I largely avoid Instagram. It takes seconds for me to begin spiraling down the"I'm not worthy, "look how perfect their life/business/family/body is" black hole of pity and self-doubt. So I only pop on every few days or so to see what some of my favorite artists and teachers are doing then get the heck out of dodge before the darkness sets in.
My approach to a world where I don't feel accepted, wanted, or even remotely fit - where I don't see myself in any post and only feel worse about myself after each visit - is to avoid it.
What other spaces am I avoiding because I don't look like everyone else? What places do I pass over because I don't want to be judged or rejected? What events do I skip because I don't want to be the "other" one in the crowd?
Where else in my life am I allowing other people to dictate how I see myself?
I avoid Instagram because I don't want to compare my imperfect life with what others want me to believe is their perfect life.
I avoid the gym because I don't want to compare my imperfect body with what society says how I am supposed to look.
I avoid the large industry events because I don't want to compare my imperfect business with what the industry "leaders" decide is the best new way to be an instant success.
I am realizing now how much of my life is determined by avoiding situations (and people) that attack my bubble of mediocrity and safety.
Truth is, I have complete control over what and who I let into my life.
I have complete control over which thoughts I focus my attention on.
I have complete control over how I see myself, my business, my body, my life.
Just as I can decide who to follow on Instagram, I can decide whether to allow in something that inspires me or spirals me.
Just as I can curate my Instagram feed with people who support what I believe what I believe, who look how I look, who exhibit radical self-love and self-acceptance, who are showing their whole life and not just a perfect snapshot, who are willing to tell their truth and share their story, who are boldly living their life without boundaries...
So, too, can I curate my life to be the same.
I can surround myself with people who believe in me as much as they believe in themselves.
I can attend events with the explicit intention to connect with those who uplift and inspire me.
I can find a gym that welcomes all bodies and celebrates the courage to try instead of (or in addition to) results.
I can create a business that feels right for me, built upon my talents and gifts, and focused on impact and service instead of comparing my struggles with someone else's Facebook brag.
I can curate my life and so can you.
Stop following people on social media that make you feel bad about yourself.
Surround yourself with people to inspire you.
Do one thing every day that makes you proud.
Focus on impact, not outcome.
Remind yourself of who you are, not what you look like.
Ask better questions when you get stuck. It's not WHY? but HOW CAN I?
Take control of your time.
Be ruthless in the messages you allow into your space.
Create more content than you consume.
For me, it starts with Instagram and designing a place where I finally belong.