Updated: Mar 5, 2020
Life is confusing! It is full of uncertainties, struggles and complex relationships: even with ourselves. Especially with ourselves! With our daily obligations, we tend to forget that we are born alone and that we die alone. In other words, we must do things for ourselves.
We constantly discover and rediscover the world around us, lose and find ourselves and our expectations, through every little moment of our life.
And even though being surrounded by people can feel great and reassuring, it can also get in the way of exploring and expressing who we truly are. Don’t get me wrong, we are social beings. It is normal to meet with others, and to rely on them in some ways. However, it is very important to acknowledge how all these constant interactions can affect us. It can be easy to lose sight of our essence, especially when we have to respond to so many expectations!
Being our own person may seem simple on the surface, but it's much more complicated when you go in depth. In fact, taking into account the good and the bad is a responsibility which may seem enormous - but which is worth the effort. I always thought about it as being fully aware of my abilities in order to be the best version of myself.
At some point in my life I hated myself, as I no longer recognized the person standing in the mirror. Between this idea of who I wanted to be and the idea people had of me, being myself started to be uncomfortable. I wore a mask all day long in order to please everyone; to be a “good” person, whatever that meant. And it was exhausting! It seemed like I couldn’t satisfy anyone, or if I did, I wasn’t satisfied with myself. I think that deep down I knew I wasn't being honest.
What happened was terrible. I ended up with people swearing they knew me better than I knew myself, and you know what? Sometimes I believed them! I don't know if I lacked confidence or if it was easier to pretend, but I accepted it. I was defined, if not controlled, by people’s motivations; it was very subtle and also pervasive. They answered for me, dictated my behaviors, and made me feel guilt when I was myself. I fell into this totally wrong and painful perception of myself every time my true personality arose. That's how I realized I had to stand up for myself. I’ve learned over the years, how people treat you could say a lot more about yourself than about them.
So yes, the fear of judgment, of being misunderstood, the need to fit in was still there... but I realized it should never make us accept less than what we deserve! Be it a job, a relationship, anything! Sure we have to adapt ourselves, but we shouldn’t forget at the end of the day, our only responsibility is ourselves.
We are our own person, we have to take care of ourselves. Sometimes it’s quitting your job, going on vacation, cutting someone off. However, most of the times it’s just being honest and consistent with you and your people, knowing your worth and acting on it. Loving yourself is what matters! At the end of the day we’re left with our conscious, and I’ve never known more peace than when my heart, soul and mind are all getting along.
And I firmly believe that being aware of who we really are, what we actually want, without settling and compromising, is one of the keys of true peace. And that in order to have an uplifting relation with ourselves we should actually know ourselves. Honesty is the best gift we can offer to the human soul. We have to be honest with what we deserve in life, and not ask for less than that. How many people settled for something less than what they deserved? And then they end up with overwhelming regret, because deep down, these people knew they deserved more.
I think it is necessary to emphasize, that what suited us a year ago, may no longer suit us today. And what we stood for yesterday may not be what we believe in today. We should never feel bad for protecting our peace, nor neglect time to reset.