LOVING YOURSELF IS WORK
There is no map, manual, or set of directions—and the journey never stops. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve dragged myself out of bed, exhausted in my own skin, looked in the mirror, and prayed I could just be somebody else. And then one day, like I was Andy walking away from Miranda in The Devil Wears Prada
, it hit me: if I ever want to be happy and successful, I probably need to learn to love myself. I haven’t discovered my love-yourself potion, but there have been moments where I felt pretty, confident, and proud of myself: overcoming heartbreak and loss, graduating from college, starting The Just Girl Project . . . I channel those memories when I feel down and use them to uplift me. So before you read this chapter, take a deep breath, close your eyes, and travel back to the moments where you felt glowy and energized. Those memories, along with the struggles, are key!
DON’T EVER HIDE YOUR MAGIC
Girl, you’re magical. Like unicorns or Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. Now, you may not be able to move objects with your mind or predict the future, but you do have a unique ability: BEING YOURSELF. Growing up, I acted like I didn’t want to fit in. I enjoyed playing devil’s advocate and having friends outside of school. I loved to be mysterious and resisted showing my classmates who I really was. I was afraid that they would discover that I was weird and different. But I was wrong. When I finally started to open up and express myself creatively, people started to like me more. It felt good. I don’t remember why I decided to start being myself, but I do know that as I got older, it got easier. Being yourself is magical. Don’t hide yourself or be what you think people want you to be. Find out what’s unique about you and get in touch with it. To be anybody else, when you can just be yourself, is such a crime.
Copyright © 2021 by Ilana Harkavy. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.