I never thought that I looked beautiful. Whenever I looked into the mirror, I couldn’t help but think: “if only my eyes were bigger”, “if only I had thicker lips” and “if only I had nicer eyebrows”. The girl I saw in the mirror was not someone I wanted to be and I was not happy. Very often, you would probably have heard people say: “Everyone is beautiful in their own ways”. I have never truly agreed to that statement. If everyone was beautiful in their own ways, why am I not beautiful?About half a year ago, I started becoming excessively self-conscious about the way I looked. Soon, I was telling myself to eat less and exercise more. I would occasionally skip meals and constantly pick out parts of myself I desperately wanted to change. However, every night, I would go to bed feeling unhappy. I was slowly becoming someone I could not recognise anymore. As the end of 2017 was approaching, I was invited to share what I’m thankful for and the struggles I faced in the past year at the church service I attend weekly. After a long time, I gradually found the courage to share about the insecurities that I had about the way I looked. Never would I have expected that shortly after my sharing, a girl whom I frequently saw at church but never got a chance to talk to came up to me. She said, “Thank you for the sharing. To be very honest, I have been struggling with loving myself for the way I looked for quite some time. Your boldness to share about your insecurities in front of so many people really inspired me to realise that being myself was the right decision all along.” I was taken aback. Her words struck me with the sudden realisation that hey, being beautiful was not about looking perfect but about being myself! Nobody is perfect. Yet, we live in a world where we are constantly judged by our appearances. Men are always idolising the “perfect woman” and women do the same. We are always criticising our hair, clothes and bodies. We see girls in television shows and instantly feel self conscious, and run to the gym in hopes of achieving their perfect bodies.After what happened, I slowly realised that everyone was created differently. No one has to change the way they are to impress others. Sure, it’s not easy to ignore the way others think about you, but won’t you feel happier when you are just being you? I always had the idea that I’m only beautiful if I have big eyes, a sharp nose, nice eyebrows and a perfect body. Now, I see that there are many different kinds of beautiful and it’s okay if I don’t look perfect in my eyes. To me, the true essence of beauty is being comfortable in my own imperfections. I believe in being “be-you-tiful”.