Many of us, myself included, have been conditioned to not be truly ourselves from an early age. We have built up layers of masks to the outside world, never really revealing who we really are.
Wouldn’t it be an amazing world if we allowed ourselves the gift to be fully and truly ourselves?
We have been taught to deny how we truly feel and not say what we truly think. This people pleasing behaviour has prevented us from really been seen for who we truly are, warts and all. It also denies us the opportunity to fully love and accept ourselves in front of another, when we are revealing to them who we truly are.
I feel inspired to write about this because on my recent journey on the Camino de Santiago, I felt complete freedom and the opportunity to be fully myself. I feel I gave myself the permission to do it. However since I have returned to the so called ‘real’ world I have noticed that at times that I am trying to be somebody that I am not. I see myself not fully saying my truth or saying how I feel. I would love to create the possibility of being myself all of the time 🙂
I see in my own life, what ultimately stops me from being myself, is fear. Fear of what other people think of me, fear that I maybe be judged, fear that I will not be loved, fear that I will be alone if I choose to be fully myself, fear that I may hurt people etc. I am aware that this so called ‘fear’ is an illusion. I cannot control what other people think of me, whether they love me or not, whether they judge me or not…..
At times we try to be somebody we are not because we are looking for other people’s approval, acceptance and appreciation when ultimately the only person who can give that to us, is ourselves.
Anthony De Mello says that
“In many ways we were drugged when we were young. We were brought up to need people. For what? For acceptance, approval, appreciation, applause—for what they called success.”
Anthony De Mello ~ Awarness
Also we may be afraid that if we reveal who we really are to the person or the people in front of us, that they will dislike and disapprove of us.
When we continue to be somebody we are not, we may experience unhappiness in our lives, never really giving ourselves the gift of really loving and approving ourselves as we truly are. Ultimately we can experience a sense of dis-ease within ourselves because our external selves are not congruent or in line with our inner selves.
So how do we go about stop trying to be somebody we are not?
Well a few ways I have found useful are;
* To just listen to ourselves and see what feels right for us.
* Become aware of when we are on the people pleasing mode.
* Write morning pages – stream of conscious.
* Trust our inner inspirations.
* Choose to love and approve of ourselves, exactly as we are.
* Have the courage to express our true self, if it feels right to do so.
* Say to ourselves that it really is okay to be who we are.
As always, I would love to hear any feedback or suggestions you may have.