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Taylor and I are the new cub scout leaders in our ward (which means we spend our Wednesday evenings with nine-year-old boys doing normal nine-year-old boy things like running around in circles whilst screaming and trying not to set everything on fire). This week we piled into the car and took a mini field trip to BYU's bean museum-- which was fun, but this is all somewhat beside the point, really.

On our way home from our excursion, we had the pleasure of listening to one of our little cubs excitedly explain to us some of the many reasons why he's so awesome. His voice danced up and down in a very animated manner as he took the time to count out each of those reasons on his fingers, "I can spell comprehension and geometry, I can count by nines, AND I know division." When Taylor asked him if he's going to be the next Albert Einstein someday, his immediate response was a confident, "Probably."

He was genuinely, innocently confident in himself. He was proud of who he is and he had confidence in who he can become. My first response to his confidence was a chuckle and a big "thumbs-up." I think everyone can agree that it's pretty cute when kids are that confident in themselves. But I think that sometimes it's easy to look at confident children and think something along the lines of, "Oh, you cute, naive child. Someday you'll learn that it's not okay to be so proud of yourself." When that thought crossed my mind on Wednesday night, I bit my tongue. I didn't want that cute little boy to ever lose his sweet self confidence. I didn't want him to "grow up" and learn that society doesn't think that it's okay to like yourself and to be proud of yourself. 

Why do we think like that? Why does society encourage us to shame ourselves for thinking that we are awesome human beings? Why do we feel as if we aren't pretty enough, smart enough, or funny enough? The phrase, "I'm not pretty enough," doesn't even make sense to me. What are we not "pretty enough" for? What are we not "smart enough" for? Is there someone out there who examines the human race and the different cultures across the world and then defines what "enough" actually means?

Well, I think we've got it all wrong.

It's okay to like yourself, you know. It's okay to look in the mirror and like the way you look (even when you don't look exactly the way society tells you to look). It's okay to be proud of yourself for acing the exam that you spent hours studying for. It's okay to laugh at your own jokes (even if no one else is laughing)! It's okay to acknowledge all the strengths you have that complement all of the weaknesses you're always paying so much attention to. And it's okay to expect great things from yourself (just don't beat yourself up when things fail to go exactly according to plan). 

If you are constantly hearing some awful invisible creature whispering a plethora of mean things about you into your ear, stop listening! If you feel the need to constantly put yourself down, stop! The world is already too full of negativity for us to keep on adding on to the pile. It's okay to like yourself, you know.  So say nice things about yourself every now and then. Oh, and don't forget to be proud of yourself too. It's important (I learned that from a nine-year-old boy).

1 comment

  1. This post made me tear up! I needed to read this so badly Calea!! Thank you so much for sharing! <3

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