It’s hard to see growth when there’s no tangible evidence. You can easily begin to think badly of yourself and how much you haven’t done and of all the things you have not accomplished.
There’s a great way to address that, document it.
I’m about to tell you a story, that might sound random, but follow it for a moment.
At the beginning of 2018 my acne flared up terribly. I had just finished 3 chemical peels back to back, in a bid to clear up acne scarring, believing that as I approached my 30s everything would settle down. Not my skin and not my face. Rather than reveal new skin, my acne returned with a vengeance. My skin was not happy with the peels or me and it showed. I felt defeated again. Who wants to be dealing with acne at any age never mind at 30!
Up until that point, there existed NO pictures of my bare face. Not one. Not one since I was 17. Not on my personal phone, not even in a place where’d it be hidden, where only I would be privy to it. Not even after 2 rounds of roaccutane (which significantly improved my skin temporarily), numerous facials, topical treatments and so on. Never. I didn’t want to see it. I didn’t want proof of it anywhere, thinking that if I didn’t have to see it, it’ll piss off and never return somehow. It can’t exist if I do not acknowledge it right? Well it didn’t piss off and it did exist.
For years I hated pictures and was always running from a camera and deleting pictures from other people phones. Even today, I’m still not all that enthusiastic about it, however I am MUCH better than I used to be.
Anyway, I’m not sure what possessed me this time around, but I decided I would take pictures of my bare skin in June 2018. It was bad, really bad.
No one ever believes how problematic and scarred my skin was, because I was an expert at disguising most of it. Those with acne prone skin usually are. Now I’d have proof to show people when they’d say ‘you’re skin isn’t bad’, erm yes it was, let’s call a spade a spade.
Truthfully though, I had no intentions of showing anyone and still don’t. I did however, want to see the changes that might happen.
I took action to repair my skin for the umpteenth time and gradually it improved, but I wanted more. I wanted my blemish free taunt skin that I had pre-acne, that was until I looked at the picture I took a year ago. I was astounded by the difference.
I immediately felt immense gratitude for how far I’d come and the progress I had made. I couldn’t actually believe this was what it used to look like. I looked in the mirror again and appreciated how much had changed.
Being able to look back and see the difference between then and now instantly shifted my perspective on how I saw things and increased my confidence. I give myself a little bit more love and a pat on the back for not giving up.
You should consider doing the same. Write down your feelings or take pictures of what you’re doing/working on now, and if you feel compelled to regarding that particular thing, continue to do so. Over time, you will notice the leaps and bounds that you will have made, if only you will not give up and keep going.
P.s Perhaps I’ll share pictures another time, when I am ready and or feeling much much braver lol.