DEAR ABBY: I have a problem. Basically, I don't like me. I am self-conscious about my weight, my face, my personality. I'm not pretty. I have heard so many times I should "just be myself" that I am sick of it! I don't want to be myself because I don't like myself.
All of my friends are either beautiful, witty, kind or whatever. And I am not, I guess. Please tell me what to do about it. -- COMING UP SHORT IN OREGON
DEAR COMING UP SHORT: I do have a few suggestions, and the first is to stop being your own worst enemy. The more you dwell on what you think you lack, the more you will amplify those things. Find one thing you like about yourself and build from there.
Because you're self-conscious about your weight, do something about it by adopting a healthy eating and exercise plan. While you may not be a cover girl, you can be well-groomed. More important than being "witty" is to be a good listener. Remember that, and people will think you are a great conversationalist.
The more you brood about yourself, the lonelier you will become. The more you think about helping others, the less time you will have to think about yourself.