Too often we let social norms dictate the way we live our lives and interact with one another. More often than not, we neglect our true selves to avoid coming across as foolish, different, or confrontational. Unfortunately, this “safe” pattern of suppressing the true nature leaves our lives and relationships lacking and empty. This state of discontent we create by suppressing the true self, leaves us with a sense of loneliness that can persist even when surrounded by friends and family. Ironically, this loneliness is exactly what the ego was trying to avoid by holding back the authentic qualities and action that it deemed foolish, different, or confrontational. It’s no wonder we are attracting meaningless work and loveless relationships while neglecting our true selves.
To escape this cycle, ask yourself what it is you’re holding back or what part of yourself you are suppressing in this moment. Maybe you’re at odds with a friend because you fear the confrontation of an open, honest conversation. Maybe you have a brilliant solution or idea that you’re keeping to yourself for fear of being questioned or laughed at. Maybe you have feelings for a man or woman that go unrequited for fear of being rejected. Maybe you want to quit your job and move to a new town for a fresh start, but stay where you are out of fear of the unknown.
Once you find your secret stash of suppressed self, ask yourself what you’re so afraid of. What is the worst that could happen if you reveal this part of yourself? Chances are, it’s not death. Chances are, if you release this part of your true self into the world, you will still have a roof over your head and food in your belly. You may even find a connection with someone, or with a group of people, who share your true aspirations, hopes, feelings, and dreams.
I can tell you from experience, that the connections you’ll find with people who really see you, are powerful ones that will nurture love and keep you pushing forward in life. These are the people who will encourage you to be yourself and try things you’re scared of. As you grow into your true self, the superficial relationships in your life will fall away and new, more meaningful ones will emerge. As you gain confidence from these special relationships, you’ll start to notice new people coming into your life who only know the real you. They don’t even know that you who was cynical and only capable of superficial relationships.
Human beings are hugely resilient and capable of withstanding the onslaught of adversity one faces over the course of a lifetime. Instead of shying away from change and fear, internalize that strong shield of resilience and use it to push yourself forward. Exercise those muscles and go after the things that speak to you on a soul level. Make connections with others who share your passions, and risk trying something new. Once you find that sense of passion and purpose, you’ll experience the exhilaration of contributing something that only you can give to the world.
For a peek at my own, very personal, journey through this process, you can visit my blog: www.kristindaemontravel.blogspot.com.