Being oneself takes courage, commitment and faith. It's a process of letting go of many false beliefs you have picked up from the collective consciousness: that you have to look good, be smart, know the right people, say the right things, have proper experience, in order to be happy and successful in life. Being yourself can be scary, difficult and even off-putting and at times lonely. However, being your authentic self is liberating, exciting and fulfilling. When you have the courage to just be who you are without apology or pretense, so much of the suffering, stress and worry in life simply disappears.
Here are a few things to consider and practice:
- Tell the truth to yourself. The more you let go of being defined by the external stuff, the more freedom, peace and power you can experience. And as you really get honest with yourself, you may realize that outside of these external things, you don't really know who you are. As scary as it may seem on the surface, it's actually great news and can give you access and more meaningful experience of who you are.
- Appreciate who you really are. What personal qualities(of being, not doing) do you value about yourself? The more you are able to tap into what you appreciate about who you are and not what you do, the more capacity you have for real confidence, peace and self-love.
- Practice just being you. It actually takes conscious practice to be able to just show up and be who you are. Practice alone, with people you know, and with total strangers. This is all about awareness: paying attention to how you feel, what you say and how you show up. It is not about getting it right or doing anything specific but about letting go of our erroneous notions of how you think you are supposed to be and just allowing yourself to be who you are in the moment.
- Celebrate who you are. Self-love is what we are all searching for. To be truly fulfilled in life, we have to find that love within us and give it to ourselves. No other person, amount of money, material possession or accomplishment can do it. It's up to us. We have an opportunity to celebrate who we are for any reason and at any time.