Let’s face it, when it comes to being ourselves, there are a lot of pressures in our external world that act as obstacles to living a life from the space of our truest self.
But what do we mean when we refer to being yourself?
In our view, being your true self is not limited to allowing ourselves to give expression to our talents and gifts in our life (though this is certainly a very important part of being yourself). It’s not even about being willing to speak your truth (though this is important as well). We see being yourself as being who you are from all angles. You might label these angles as good, bad, light, shade, ugly, beautiful, worthy, unworthy, smart, dumb....the list can be endless.
Simply put, it is about living your truth in all its guises in such a way that you can live your life as a whole person.
In our view, many people splinter their own beings by narrowing the process of connecting to their true self by only focusing on their perceived strengths and only allowing these to be seen out in the world and being ashamed of the rest of themselves. We believe this has a detrimental impact on us in 2 ways.
- Firstly, we believe it undermines our self-esteem by labelling only certain aspects of ourselves as being worthy whilst piling the remaining aspects of our being as being incomplete, a work-in-progress or a flawed and failed aspect of ourselves that needs to be hidden in a corner so that no one (not even ourselves) can be reminded of our own ineptitude.
Our thoughts might go something like this: “I can speak to an audience and have people hanging on my every word but I’m not good with maths and numbers. I always failed at maths and I’m ashamed of it. I don’t want anyone to know this about me (including myself) or have any suspicions about my worthiness as a person validated”. Sound familiar? Perhaps the examples might be different in your world but maybe the divisive way you embrace and discard aspects of yourself is familiar to you. And for many of us, this thought process has become so automatic that it happens at an unconscious level.
- The second way we see this thinking as being detrimental is that this splintered view of ourselves fails to recognise the dynamic interplay that the various aspects of ourselves fulfil. In truth, it is simply impossible for every single person to possess every single talent and gift known to mankind. This is what is so rich about our experience in life that we can each give expression to our own unique gifts in such a way that is speaks potently to those individuals who resonate most deeply with our own being, allowing us to connect on a much more profound level than if we were only ever to connect with everyone in the same way. Therefore, rather than seeing only our gifts and talents as being worthy of making up the whole, we invite you to acknowledge those aspects you’ve buried in shame and acknowledge them for the powerful role that they play in allowing your most dominant gifts to come to the fore and shine brightly in the way that they do.
See all aspects of yourself as being on a continuum where there are no aspects that are shameful or unworthy, simple some that shine more brightly than others. This is a powerful paradigm shift for this allows us to embrace ourselves as a whole, worthy and deserving person. This frees up so much energy – energy that is no longer tied up in suppressing feelings of shame and unworthiness that can instead be directed towards sharing our gifts with the world in a way that is truly meaningful for ourselves as well as those around us.