See here's the thing about learning to be yourself (and maybe one day like yourself, but that's quite a ways off for me): you have to accept what you're NOT, too.
It goes a little something like this: I meet many different cool people who are able to do things (many things) that I can't do, or they do them better than me. So I start to want to be like them- except the ME part of me just doesn't do that. Things like talent at sports, getting up easily in the mornings, lack of anxiety and depression, fashion sense, flexibility, doing something half- assed everyone once in a while just because. Those kind of things.
And if I really, truly start accepting myself for who I am right in this moment, it means I have to accept that I am a night owl, that I have no innate talent at athletics, my tendencies are to be regimented, and looking on the bright side isn't my strong point. In my stereotypical way, I thought that if I worked hard enough, I could make these things come true. I was going to be in bed by 10pm EVERY NIGHT and WIDE AWAKE at 6am, and have a full day's work done by noon! Or I would start trying to plan an impulsive trip- is this a good weekend to call someone to go on a road trip? Maybe?
What this really means is: I wish I were different.
There. I said it.
Constantly wishing to be different let me live in a fantasy world where I really was different, where those possibilities existed and I could fulfill them. Except here's reality and this is where I try to live most of the time, and I have to make the most of what I have.
Which still makes me sad.
I don't think that self-improvement is a futile task- far from it, in fact. But you have to start with who you really are, and not who you're NOT.