Learning To Know My Worth

I’ve made some changes in my life recently. I started a new job in January, began an intensive diet the same month and have taken a break from dating. As much as I’d like to say it’s purely because I couldn’t take any more dating disasters, the reason goes much deeper than that.

The truth is, dating wasn’t good for my health. My self-esteem was so reliant on others that each disappointment chipped away at it until there was nothing left. I was putting so much hope on every date I went on that it sent my anxiety into overdrive when I heard nothing back or they didn’t want to see me again. I would blame myself for every rejection and expect the same outcome from the next person. But, what I didn’t realise then was that none of them were worth my time.

I was dating people who didn’t care about me because I didn’t care for myself. I would accept the worst behaviour because I didn’t think I was worthy of anything better. It’s a vicious cycle that leads to unhealthy patterns, accepting whatever comes along because the fear of being alone is too much. It’s no secret that I struggle with loneliness, but I didn’t realise I was making myself feel worse by trying to find someone.

I remember the exact moment I said enough was enough. It was October 2017 and I had just been on what I thought was a successful second date with someone. They even made comments about what they liked about me and implied they wanted to see me again. But, then the messages began to get shorter and the time between them longer, until they just stopped. It was a lightbulb moment that made me step back and say, “I can’t do this to myself anymore.”

I deleted his number, followed by all the datings apps on my phone. Of course, this wasn’t the first time I’d deleted the apps after reaching my limit, but there was something about this time that felt different. Usually reality, and boredom, sets in a few days later and I download them all again. But, I’m proud to say I still don’t have a single dating app on my phone. This may seem like no big deal, but almost five months without even wanting to date is a revelation for me.

I don’t want to date people for the sake of it anymore. I don’t want to rely on other people’s opinion of me to validate my self-worth. I don’t want to waste time talking to people who only want one thing. It’s like I’ve taken a deep breath, stepped back and realised it’s okay to be alone. I’ve been working towards understanding my past and building my self-esteem over the last few months and it’s the best decision I’ve made in a while. I’m starting to realise where my insecurities come from and it’s not my fault when things don’t work out. There is nothing wrong with me and there never has been. I feel the strongest I’ve ever felt and I’m only going to get stronger.

The best part is, others have noticed a change in me. They’ve commented on how much happier I seem and to keep doing what’s working for me. I feel like a different person than I was just a few months ago. I’m noticeably more content in my own skin, as I’ve stopped putting so much pressure on myself and take each day as it comes. I’m not constantly looking for someone to fill some sort of void within me. The more time I spend on my own, the more I realise I’m not half a person looking for someone to make me whole. And it’s the best feeling imaginable.

Until next time,
Donna x

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