You hear people talk about the importance of being yourself, being true to who you are, but how is that achieved? How do we even start to find out who we are?
Obviously I’m going to say therapy, because I’m a therapist? Not necessarily. We can find ourselves through introspection and self awareness, but I will admit these are often easier if we have someone to explore the ideas with. It doesn’t have to be a therapist it can be a trusted friend, or even a journal or blog.
The trick? There isn’t one. Or at least not one I’ve found. Many people will offer advice, remember that’s just advice, take it – leave it – adapt it to yourself, only you know whats best for you.
See you just started. You just made your first ‘being yourself’ choice.
I found myself bit by bit; sometimes in small bits, sometimes in big bits and sometimes without noticing, often through making wrong choices or uncontrollable life events. I learnt to listen to me, not others, I felt my gut reaction, I felt the pleasure or sadness something brought.
An example? I’m a nerd. I used to hide it, be ashamed of it, try to fit in. Then I realised that it just made me feel unhappy. I got no pleasure age 21 of wearing uncomfortable clothes that revealed (what I felt to be) too much of me, of painting my face and dancing to music I didn’t like, while drinking cheap alco-pops that made me feel sick, I hated staying out late. I am not saying these are bad things, but they were bad things for me. So I did what I felt right? No because I had no idea what was right yet. I did over time, I found reading fun, I found board games, I found live role-play, I found counselling, I found university, I found computer games, I found sci-fi TV and films, I have watched every Star Trek episode, I learnt bit by bit, trial and error, what I liked and didn’t like. In the process I learnt I’m a nerd and I am proud of it.
Do you know what else? I found some of the most amazing friends. Because I was being me, they could get to know me, feel comfortable around me because my reactions were honest and didn’t change because they were real rather than fitting for the moment. This meant they could be themselves around me and I didn’t judge them. We grew to know one another.
So Being You – its not easy, its not fast and I don’t think you ever stop learning but I find its worth it.
If you’d like some face to face counselling in the Stoke-on-Trent, Newcastle-under-Lyme or Staffordshire area please do contact Wright Minds on firstname.lastname@example.org or 07598810304