Seven years ago, Melissa Ambrosini was in hospital struggling with depression, anxiety and an eating disorder.

Fast-forward to today and she's an author of two books and happily married to a husband she describes as her ''soul mate''.

The 31-year-old, who has written a new book called Open Wide to guide others through love and relationships, credits her new life to taming her inner mean girl and practicing self-love.  

"Relationships are our biggest spiritual assignments, our greatest opportunities for growth, and the highest-stake games we'll ever play... and yet most of us don't know how to navigate them," she says.

"I mean, let's face it: we weren't given a manual when we came out of the womb. And it's not like we're taught 'Relationships 101' at school or (for most of us) by our parents.

"Imagine sitting down with a Sudoku grid for the first time and not being told what the rules are... You wouldn't get very far, would you?

"And if you're anything like me, you fumble," she adds. 
"You make poor (really poor) choices in relation to men and friendships, wasting hours — scratch that, wasting days, months and even years — holding grudges against people and agonising, worrying and stressing out over what he or she — or you — once said or did a long time ago.' 
Melissa Ambrosini says most people don't know how to navigate relationships.
Ambrosini says the reason most women don't have fulfilling relationships is because of self-sabotage.

"Their inner critic or what I like to call your inner mean girl," she explains.

"That's that voice inside your head that says, 'You're not good enough, pretty enough, smart enough, you will never meet the guy, true love won’t happen for you'".

"That fear-based, limiting voice is what is stopping you from experiencing deep love, rocking relationships and soulful sex," she says.

So how can we find true love? According to Ambrosini we should start with ourselves.

"Love yourself first because you can't call in your love until you know yourself on a deep and intimate level.

"Soulful sex starts with you. So the first step is opening wide and loving yourself and your body wholeheartedly. 

"Once you open wide to yourself you will then be able to open wide and let another in."

"We need to reprogram our brain with positive, body-confident messages," she adds. 

Ambrosini says many young women who scroll through social media feeds are constantly comparing themselves to others, which can lower their self-esteem and confidence.

"Social media comparison is a big one, especially among younger girls. 

"My advice is to use social media for inspiration — not to make you feel bad about yourself. Follow people who inspire you." 

Daily Mail