My school has an awesome program called the Alumni Mentoring Program (commonly referred to as AMP). Some of it helps students network for when they graduate, but a lot of it is self-building and exploration. We meet up once a month and talk about what’s going on in our lives, have an exercise that helps us reflect inward, and then hear someone else’s story.
My group met up last week and focused on core values. We had a stack of words that symbolized values people can have. We separated them into very important, somewhat important and not important. Eventually, out of all those words, we had to pick our top three. Mine?
…I have to say, this didn’t surprise me all that much. Here’s why:
My mission in life is to love everyone and show them that they are all wonderful people that deserve love. No matter what they do or who they are, we are all people and all deserve respect. I may not agree with someone’s decision, but I believe that we should have the ability to make good and bad decisions equally.
And creativity, well, I want to make things. I want to represent ideas that help people, that touch them and better them in some way. I like finding new ways to do things and I love finding stories with unique narratives or elements. I want to use my creativity to spread love and respect. We are all brothers and sisters and all deserve equal chances. I despise anything that goes against that or believes that someone is lesser because of something completely out of their control. Who gave them the right to ruin someone’s life?
After we defined what each of these values meant to us, our mentors asked us if we lived by those values. After a bit of thought, I realized that I lived up to those values when it came to everyone but myself. I don’t love myself, I don’t respect my limits and I judge myself so harshly.
That’s not okay. It’s not okay to hold myself up to some unattainable standard and then beat myself up when I can’t reach it. That behavior is a type of hypocrisy, which is something I abhor.
Readers, I am going to do better. I am going to work on self-love and self-respect. Will you do the same?