People always talking about finding themselves.
I’m no exception. My tagline after all is “Your journey to you.”
And if you’re like many of the people I talk to, you’re probably sitting there thinking, “OK, great sure, I should find myself, but seriously, what the f*** does that even mean??”
MY TAKE ON THIS WHOLE FINDING YOURSELF THING:
I would say it’s somewhere around starting a mindfulness practice that will help you build self confidence and courage – the confidence and courage to DO what you want, SAY what you want, and FEEL and ACT how you want. Regardless of anyone else’s judgment or reaction. Basically, giving yourself permission to be all that is you. Not someone else’s idea of what you should be (think, say, feel).
(And no, I’m not trying to say do whatever you want with no regard for others. Definitely not. There’s an art to selfishness and self-care. See what I’m talking about here.
GET A HANDLE ON THAT INNER VOICE.
Being authentically you is easier said that done. Especially with the negative inner voice we all have that just loves to berate our each and every move.
So, finding yourself also involves not judging yourself. You learn (with plenty of practice, mind you!) to accept your thoughts and actions whole-heartedly. Instead of beating yourself up over mistakes or poor decisions, you see them as an opportunity to learn.
What you’ve said or done doesn’t define you. You get to define yourself every single moment!
We live in a dualistic world and are in constant comparison and seeming conflict. Learning to release these tendencies is where it’s at.
Through mindfulness training and coaching techniques, we work towards your true confidence so that you can feel free to be and do, as we touched on above. This is the journey my tagline is speaking to.
YES, IT’S A JOURNEY, NOT A QUICKIE CHANGE.
It first takes awareness to see that you are judging, how you are judging, and why you are judging.
Judging = catalyst for insecurity
This awareness of where in your life you are judging yourself and not allowing yourself to be free will open the door to understanding who it is you really are deep down inside.
It can be something as simple as realizing how you like your eggs, no ifs ands or buts about it. Of course, that’s not to say you are inflexible, it just means, this is your preference and it will take more than a cute guy to change your mind.
It means you ask yourself “What do I want right now?” and even when you feel the insecurities trying to draw you in, you go forward with your true desires. It takes a lot of courage to stay true to yourself and to do the thing that you know is best.
You will eventually come to know what will provide you long-term happiness and you choose that, instead of the short-term gratification your insecurities push you towards.
It will take time and practice to make the right choice for you and it will get easier over time as your self-awareness and confidence grows. (Check out this post – How do I know what I want?).
STOP AND THINK.
Pause and ponder before you take action. Be mindful. A good question to ask yourself is…”Do I want to feel how I will feel if I make the decision for short term satisfaction, or do I want to feel that long term happiness even if the decision feels too hard right now?”
For example – going to yoga, drinking that second pint, calling your ex, choosing to stay home while your partner goes out.
LET’S LOOK AT AN EXAMPLE IN ACTION:
You’re feeling tired, maybe a little disconnected from yourself, and there’s been a slight distance between you and your partner lately. You’ve noticed that when you feel that distance you start getting a little bit clingy/needy and tend to start giving up your own self-care just to be close to your partner at all times (yay, self-awareness!). So, he comes home and is heading to a friend’s house and asks if you want to go along.
- One part of you is saying YESSSS!!! Of course I’ll go honey.
- The other part of you is saying, thanks but no thanks. I’m exhausted and a long bubble bath and chick flick is just what I need to unwind.
Here’s the moment for mindfulness and wisdom. You check in and go – “Hey, what do I actually need right now? How do I want to feel? What’s the best decision for me?”
- Looking more closely, the yes part of you is really saying, “OMG, I have to do everything you do because I can’t stand the feeling of being distant from you so if I just go with you everywhere it will get better.”
- The no part of you knows you need some “me” time, and has the confidence to assert that need.
The choice is always yours. Becoming aware that there is a choice in the first place, rather than just running on auto-pilot or taking action without checking in, is all part of the journey of finding you.
Once you start tapping into your true needs and making decisions with your own self-care in mind, you’ll be on your way to you. By holding/honoring your insecurities and pushing forward with that long-term happiness decision, you will start to feel whole again.
So that’s one approach to defining this whole concept of finding yourself. It works for me, but I’m curious about what it may mean to you? Or what questions this post brings up for you? Would love to hear from you in the comments!