Writing by Savannah Mullings-Johnson // Photograph by Ira Limon
Every morning when I wake up, I think of all the different things I can do during the day that can help me become a better version of the person I was yesterday, whether it’s going for a walk, volunteering, or looking after my little brother. I am always trying to find ways to make every day more special than the last because if not now, when?
Becoming a better you can be so rewarding, especially if, like me, you have suffered from low self-esteem and anxiety. The steps that I am about to share with you are some of the easiest ways to becoming a happier, confident, and more inspiring version of yourself.
Step 1: Mirror, Mirror on the wall:
As I have said before, mirrors can be your best friend or your worst enemy, but taking charge of your reflection is another way of saying F-U Insecurities. I am smart, beautiful, and confident and nothing is going to take that away from me, not even your false perceptions of how I should look. One of the easiest ways to take charge of your reflection is to simply smile every time you walk past one of those ghastly things… walk past, smile with your head held high and say “I am bad-ass,” and then watch as that symbol burns to the ground.
Step 2: Read, read, and read:
Anyone that knows me will know that I am a massive bookworm who loves to read. I can get through about six books in a week and even triple that in a month. If you are a person that doesn’t read, you’re missing out, and I definitely think you should start. Reading does not have to be the chore many people make it out to be, trust me when I say there is a book for everyone. Take Urine Therapy for example, a book all about the benefits of drinking your own pee… a book probably not for you OR me, but someone out there will love it. The thing about reading is that you often find that it educates you without you even realising, whether it’s teaching you a new word or the background of feminism.
Step 3: Take up a new hobby:
Do not listen to anyone who ever tells you that having a hobby is unhealthy. Having a hobby is a great way to relieve stress and pressure, a way to socialise, and often a creative outlet. Sadly, for a lot of us these days our favourite hobby is Netflix with a side of Ben and Jerry’s, which can be great, don’t get me wrong (you will never find a bigger TV addict than myself). But there is something really rewarding about taking up a new hobby; I love making things so I decided recently to start making bracelets and it has become one of my favourite things to do whenever I have spare time. Obviously we are all different so find something that suits you; for example, if you like to read maybe start a book blog.
Step 4: Go to bed early, get that beauty sleep:
We all need our beauty sleep so that we can wake up looking (and feeling) fab. The recommended amount of sleep that you should be getting most nights is eight hours; any less will often lead to lack of concentration, a higher risk of heart disease, and will most likely make you feel irritable. There are so many benefits to getting enough sleep, for example: Sleep boosts immunity– if you suffer from prolonged lack of sleep, your immunity could become affected making it harder to fend off diseases. Sleep also makes you slim– who knew something so lazy and peaceful could help prevent weight gain? This is because those who are sleep deprived tend to have more hunger stimulating hormones than those who are not, so you often want to eat more than your body really needs. So the moral of the story is SLEEP… you never want to be the person relying on caffeine and energy drinks as a short term pick me up.
Step 5: Eat your fruit and veggies:
Yes, I know what you’re thinking…Nagging you to eat fruit and veggies is what your mum is for. I get it, honestly I do. But this article is all about becoming a better you in all aspects, and I would be lying to you and myself if I didn’t say a healthy diet was a part of that. There really are no negatives to having fruit and veggies in your diet, as it is a good source of vitamins and minerals, and can reduce the risk of some cancers, stroke, and heart disease. If you are the sort of person who gets grossed out by greens, seeds, and all that… start slow. I used to hate pretty much anything that was remotely healthy until one day I just decided to make a lifestyle change. I started very slowly, often having one fruit and one vegetable a day, and then working my way up to the recommended average of five a day. Eat your greens kids, it’s good for you… Didn’t your parents ever tell you that?[share]