Who were you before the world stepped in and told you who to become? When a baby cries out and a caretaker responds with loving kindness, in the beginning it’s all a guessing game to try our best to soothe, respond and love. But we really never know the true meaning behind those cries. Even the best intending people may put their own needs and assumptions on those cries and respond the way they see fit. That’s the best they can do until that baby can confirm those suspicions. Is that baby having every need met, or is that sweet, dependent soul beginning the journey of taking what is offered and making it fit? Such is life as we grow into ourselves and begin to make our true selves heard. And even then, how much are we forced to push down and ignore of what we really want and need? Those innocent smiles on children desperate to please may be the faces of little ones learning to do the best with what is given to them while learning to manage what they truly wish.
As we grow and mature, we have a chance to consider who we are and what truly makes us happy. Are you letting yourself be the person you were meant to be? How do we figure out exactly who that is? After years of being told what to do, it may be difficult to truly be authentically present and acknowledge how much of who we have become is put upon us and how much of it we were free to develop on our own. Take a step back for a moment and think about where you are, why you are there and whether or not it is who and where you would like to be. Such is life really, but the next phase is letting go of some of that ingrained learning and allowing yourself to push back from the shore and mindfully explore what your choices will bring. Navigating your path after you set sail on an adventure such as this may be filled with unknown, but it’s always in times of deep reflection or exploration that we have the opportunity to grow the most.
Need to change a few things? I do, and I want to learn more about myself. There are 5 steps I am taking to thoughtfully process this lesson.
Live life and engage in activities I enjoy.
Over the last few years I have found myself diving into new experiences with a brave, awakened yearning for change. Feeling satisfied and content was no longer acceptable. I longed for a divergence from my routine and I have found myself engulfed in exciting new opportunities saying, “YES! THIS is me! THIS is what I crave and how I want to live!” And it feels good. I want more of that, so I make it happen.
Stay curious and learn
Instead of sitting in wonder of some of my interests, I decided to engage in workshops and learn new skills, read new books and attend readings of their authors, and manage my own new business focused on my passions. I hunger for new knowledge and I will never know enough about the matters that interest me.
Live in the present
Engage. Put down your technology, turn off the television and properly engage with the people and experiences around you. I like to make a pile of cell phones when my friends have dinner and the first one to reach for their phone instead of being immersed in the gathering is handed the check. If we all remain engaged and never touch a piece of technology then I consider that a win. If you are not enjoying your surroundings and need the stimulation of outside sources, then it’s time to unravel that. That unraveling is genuine work and you should be making time and space to focus on and improve that matter. It’s the constant learning and unraveling that makes us grow indefinitely, but it’s in the present that we live. Wherever you go, there you are. Be there.
Meet new admirable people and reawaken valuable lost connections
The people I have met and align myself with have made all the difference, and the people I have reconnected with from my past have impacted my journey more than words can say. It’s those who love you unconditionally and authentically that deserve your precious time and attention. Strengthen those bonds, throw your energy in their direction and it will come back to you with boundless possibility. Your soul mates, no matter how abundant or few, will see the authentic YOU emerging and admire the light shining from you.
“All of me loves all of you. Love your curves and all your edges, all your perfect imperfections” -All Of Me, John Legend
Sleep and spend time alone
When I am alone with my thoughts and without other influences to taint my perspective is when I catch a clear glimpse of who I am and what I truly want. I like to form my own impressions without speculation of others leaking in. And, never underestimate the importance of rest and renewal. Our sleep patterns are the refresh opportunity that we have everyday. After expending all of this energy to make change and become my authentic self, I need to let my body absorb this information so it can truly be integrated into my reality.
The question of who I am may never definitively be answered because she changes with each moment, but it is the promising journey to discover and rediscover myself that ignites my spirit and inspires my momentum.
above photo is of my daughter holding my hand that very first day