I was talking to my best friend the other day; she was talking negatively about her writing, saying she hates the way she puts words together and that she’ll never share her work. I instinctively told her “You’re so hard on yourself.” I stopped myself and immediately followed it with “We are so hard on ourselves.”

We as in my friend and myself. We as in humans.

Sometimes I forget that I am a human being and that that in itself opens up so much room for error, and error does not inherently mean failure, and failure does not need to always be a negative thing. Every failure is an opportunity to learn. You learn about yourself. You learn about how to do whatever you failed at, but better. You learn to be better.

There is this huge mountain of pressure that we place on ourselves to portray our lives and personalities and appearances as perfect. We can acknowledge that we ourselves aren’t perfect, but we strive to personify the term via social media and through the way we talk about ourselves and our lives. We are surrounded by these accounts ran by faces many of us have never seen, showing us exactly what an ideal life looks like. For me, that includes lots of traveling, photo-taking, love, and squats. I follow all of these things and I tell myself it’s to motivate me to one day be on these Instagrammers’ level, but most of the time all it’s doing to me is making me feel inadequate and discouraged. BUT I still try (to portray my life as peachy) online.


I am here to admit (to myself) that I am not perfect. My life does not look like my Instagram feed. I am not full of motivational quotes and body positive messages. Don’t get me wrong, I try to be, I really do. I strive to keep my head up and stay positive and drink water every day. BUT LIFE ISN’T always LIKE THAT!!! At least not for me or anyone I know. Life is so hard. Life is so messy. And in between all the hard, messy parts there are lots of fun and beautiful and amazing moments too. They’re all just blended together, handed out by the universe in ways that will grow you and challenge you and mold you into the person you were always meant to be.

I am writing all of these words down to make sense of them, if not for anyone else but myself. To remind myself that I am only human, I can only do so much, I am only in control of so much. Don’t be so hard on yourself. You are a growing, living being. A breathing thing. A memory to someone. A home to a life.

lifeasha bailey