However, from the time, we find that we are being programmed to “fit in”. Sometimes we don’t even know it’s happening. We find ourselves conforming in order to please those around us because we think that’s what we’re supposed to do. This conformity comes at a cost and often means that you have to suppress what you know is your authentic self.
Your relationship with yourself is the most important relationship you’ll ever have. Without a healthy relationship with yourself, it’s practically impossible to have healthy relationships with anyone else. If you’re ready to get reacquainted with someone you haven’t seen in a while, yourself, start with these five ideas to help you rediscover the authentic you.
1. Quiet the noise in your head
You know those voices well, the ones that are constantly nagging you to pick up the dry cleaning, talk to the school teacher, juggle the bills, schedule the vet, keep the boss happy. With all that noise going on, it will be impossible for you to hear anything above the din. This MUST be the first step. How do you do that? By setting up systems, simplifying, and establishing enough extras in your life to allow you to operate from a position of abundance, instead of lack.
2. Create a mantra card for the external pressures
That voice may also be the one that tells you that you MUST fit in. You MUST please your boss. You MUST “get along” with your peers and you MUST have happy subordinates. I call this voice in my head Ursula, you know, the sea witch from the children’s movie “The Little Mermaid”. When I feel the expectations of someone squeezing me tight so that I feel like I’m being forced into someone I am not, I write a mantra card to myself. The card says something like this, “Ursula, take your nasty tentacles off of me. I don’t live a conformed life. I live an authentic life.” Whenever, I feel the squeeze I go back to the notecard and repeat this often until I feel the tentacles release.
3. Practice thinking about yourself in healthy ways
In order to do that, you must first believe that you are valuable, and your authentic self has something to offer the world. Since you talk to yourself more than everyone else in your life combined (that’s a lot of talk!) it’s up to YOU to establish healthy communication in your thinking. Consciously listen to how you talk to yourself; write down the unhealthy things you say; challenge them; and replace them with facts. Self-Talk: “You never do anything right.” Challenge: “Of course I do things right. I did (example) right. I did (example) right. This time, I just made a mistake. I’ll learn from it and have better success next time.”
4. Listen to your heart
Sounds easy enough, but by the time we’re adults, most of us have stopped listening to our hearts and go only with our heads. Those two must reconnect in order to find your authentic self. It’s easy to become accustomed to thinking about your feelings instead of really feeling them. Instead of asking yourself what you think about something, ask why it’s important.
5. Be careful not to get hung-up on a specific goal
What you’re really after is a feeling — respect, love, appreciation – as opposed to the company car, or a great guy/girl. Keep an open mind to the feelings, and be willing to adjust the methods you use to achieve them. Determine not just your goals, but how it satisfies who you really are. The mask will come off and your authentic self will come shining through.
A person you can know and love – you! – is waiting for you to take the time to listen and understand and accept. When you accept your Authentic Self, you’ll make smarter choices, and those choices will stick because they actually fit who you are. Now, that’s what you’re really looking for, isn’t it?
Work with me
I work with women all the time who are trying to figure out who they authentically are. I empower them to articulate their uniqueness when they pull up a seat at the table. They don’t need to have the Ivy League PhD or the Harvard law degree to stand out, because they know their value is tied to who they authentically are. If you’re ready to uncover your authentic self and powerfully pull the seat up to the table, click here to schedule a time to talk about how we can work together.