I keep preaching this to myself and my friends - so much so that when it came to choosing a topic for this weeks article it really wasn't that difficult.
See the image above? That's me mid August 2012. I look miserable as anything! You think I would be happy in living my true self. Truth be told I was dying inside.
I was struggling with fitting in and standing out - an oxymoron if ever there was one.
Let me explain what I mean.
I was happy I could express myself as a woman. I was no longer bound by societies pressure of conforming to an identity that wasn't me - but I was also struggling with the fact that I wasn't fitting into my new identity either.
I hated the wig, my five o'clock shadow, the stares of strangers, my lack of curves, no friends (I'd moved to a new town, not knowing anyone), the lack of confidence, the lack of fitting in, I was being berated by total strangers in the street shouting obscenities at me.
On to of all of this I had bulimia - I'm 6 foot tall (182.88cms) and I was down to 9.5 stones (60.33 kg).
I was also missing my daughter whom and had not seen her for the longest period I'd never seen her for. Needless to say I wasn't in a good place.
My colleagues accepted me and work became my refuge - but this was not healthy and as time progressed I knew that I had to do something. Before my health deteriorated further.
My GP was luckily amazing. He agreed to prescribe bridging hormones as i was buying off of the internet anyway and I was also referred to a Gender Clinic - I was starting to make progress.
I also made a friend in a lady called Suzy. We hardly see each other anymore, but her friendship at such a low point in my life actually saved me from disappearing into a very dark place.
I gave me confidence that I was ok. I was a likeable person. I could make friends and more importantly make a go of this new identity.
I started to accept myself - in doing so I started to feel like I was worthy. I was valuable. I did matter.
The rest is history and too much to fit into one article. But fast forward four and a half years and you'll see the person below.
Still the same height now weighing in a much healthier 15.5 stones (98.43 kg's) - I could do with loosing a few pounds. But I now have curves and 38b boobs (all natural and from hormones alone) - trans woman on average put on 9lbs of fat in transition.
I let go of worrying about what to eat, what to drink and what people thought of me. I concentrated on loving myself and doing things that aligned with me rather than others.
I let go of worrying about what strangers shouted at me as I walked along the street and I was free at last.
There is so much more to this journey that I will share with you over the coming weeks but if you can take one thing from this post take this.
The pain is only temporary - you will get there. You just have to believe in yourself.