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LIFE: Is it all about fitting in? No.
Is it about trying to be different? No.
Is it simply about being your true authentic self – you know, embracing YOUR NATURE? Yes!
“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken”– Oscar Wilde –
As we gaze around us and peer within us, we can see hints of uniqueness. However, so frequently that uniqueness is disguised, whether physically, emotionally or behaviorally. The beauty of diversity is hardly realized.
The truth is, we as humans are all pretty similar – 99.9% identical on a genetic level (amazing)! When you think about it, its not hard to see, we all have the same basic emotions and fears, we all can feel joy, we all feel pain, we all want the same basic things in life – safety, security, food, love.
Absolutely and undoubtedly, there is far more that unites us, than separates us. We share much sameness. We are truly connected, here on this one earth, floating in this grand universe.
Within all of our sameness, there is still diversity to embrace
How many of us truly embrace our unique differences? A more challenging question, how many of us even know ourselves enough to truly recognize and embrace our uniqueness?
Why do we so easily forsake our authentic self? Is giving into the latest trend, gaining a high five or a “like” from your peers, or spending money on a fad, really worth sacrificing your authenticity?
Are we buying what we buy, thinking as we think, and doing as we do, because we really want to? Or are we slaves to marketing, social media, big business, and celebrity endorsements?
Ultimately, all that we do to fit in – consciously or subconsciously – is this truly bringing contentment to our lives? Is it worth it? Or are we simply losing touch with our true selves, living more shallowly, the more we attach to what the world outside us is telling us to be?
“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”– Ralph Waldo Emerson –
How do you want to live this one life you got?
We have one shot on this planet. How do you want to live this one life you got? I firmly believe that there is nothing more rewarding than connecting with yourself, harnessing your inner strength, and only doing those things that actually align with your true nature.
What would be the point of being born YOU, if you never even learned who you truly are? Whether it’s the way you think, the way you express yourself, the way you want to dress, the way you want to accessorize yourself – or not, what you want to study, how much you want to socialize, your ideas, how you choose to love, ANYTHING – there is value in who your authentic self is.
We already have too much of the same. By living and embracing your true self, you realize your own gifts, and you become a unique gift to the world around you.
How can we be better at embracing our true selves?
I am committed to a path of learning to value and embrace my true nature – to think and act in ways that are TRUE to me. I am strongly opposed to giving into fads and tends just because they are popular. I strive to embrace that which is in alignment with me.
Do we all really need to dress ourselves the same way? Is makeup really for me? Do I really want to shave my beard? Do I really need to buy the latest version of this phone? Is this really going to bring me contentment, or just another temporary high? While it isn’t always easy, and there are situations and times in our lives where this becomes more challenging to do – its about making the commitment, and consciously striving in the right direction for ourselves, even if we fall back at times.
“To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself. When you are born a lotus flower, be a beautiful lotus flower, don’t try to be a magnolia flower. If you crave acceptance and recognition and try to change yourself to fit what other people want you to be, you will suffer all your life. True happiness and true power lie in understanding yourself, accepting yourself, having confidence in yourself.”– From: The Art of Power by Thich Nhat Hanh –
7 ways I am learning to embrace who I am
1) Reflect, reflect, and then….reflect some more
This is really the foundation. Self-reflection and self-awareness. Its about observing and understanding yourself – your thoughts, feelings, and motivations. When you get an uncomfortable feeling about something – stop and think about it. Ask yourself, why is this making me uncomfortable right now? Think about it with an open mind. Be honest with yourself. This will start the journey towards uncovering your truths and embracing the real you.
Deep reflection has really been my number one strategy to better understand myself, and in turn, better understand others and the world around me.
2) Limit social media
There are a host of benefits and positives that can come out of social media. Like anything else though, there are limits, and we need to balance how much social media we consume.
Social media is a powerful tool that can influence how we feel about ourselves, others, and influence what we think we need to be or buy to be “better.” You are already good enough. Set a goal for yourself. Limit your social media incrementally say reduce it by 20 minutes this week, then try to bump it up to 30 minutes next week.
Fill that time with something more useful and productive, that brings you real contentment. Reflection, meditation, nourishing your body, sleeping, exercising, a craft or hobby, or just hanging out with loved ones. This will be much more rewarding.
Write about your reflections, thoughts, and feelings. Writing is a great tool to help you get your thoughts out and make sense of them. Just start writing freely and keep going. Don’t worry about proper grammar or spelling. See what comes out.
This is strategy I use often. I have a habit of writing down various thoughts on random pieces of paper. This can range from poetry, to just freestyling my thoughts and feelings. However, I then end up losing those pieces of paper, and can’t keep track of all I have expressed! Perhaps its time that I actually invest in a journal to keep it all together!
If you don’t prefer the freestyle journaling approach, you can also try a thought journal. This one has supportive prompts and exercises to help you reflect through writing and drawing:
4) Get inspired
There are plenty of powerful and thoughtful quotes and books, and even movies out there that can get you reflecting, open you to new perspectives, and can spring you into action to embrace yourself.
One of the most influential books I have ever read that really got me thinking about who I am, what my role in society is, and about the subtle ways that others and society impact us, was by my one of my favourite thinkers: Carl Jung! I highly recommend this book:
Here is a quote I love from this book is:
“It is not the universal and the regular that characterize the individual, but rather the unique. He is not to be understood as a recurrent unit but as something unique and singular which in the last analysis can be neither known nor compared with anything else.”
I’m also a lover of poetry, and music with deep and profound lyrics (any heavy metal fans up in here? You’ll know exactly what I mean!). But hey, different types of music suit different people. Embrace your nature and explore what is inspiring to you!
My most recent poetry reads is the following, and I loved it! Its full of short, simple, funny, and reflective poems. Don’t be fooled by the cover – its humorous, and the poetry is inspirational
5) Surround yourself with the right people
This is key. Do the people you surround yourself with support your contentment? Can you be your true self around them? Is individuality valued? Having safe and supportive people around you where you feel comfortable being yourself, is a great ground to practice embracing and exploring your true nature. I’m all about quality over quantity. While it has been challenging to find, I am content that I have a small handful of people that I can truly be myself around.
6) Spend time alone
My alone time is the most rewarding. And no, that doesn’t mean filling the time with social media. It’s alone time to engage in something that is true to me – whether it’s a feel-good workout, sipping on tea, writing, creating, relaxing with essential oils, or whatever it is, schedule time to just be with you, and let the true you come out, unhindered.
It can be difficult to make alone-time with our busy lives. However, it is possible. Start small and be realistic. Perhaps try to set aside 10 minutes a day just for yourself this week, and slowly try to increase it to 15 minutes the following week, and so on.
7) Think about the earth
Let’s remember, fast fashion and other fad products are also bad for the environment. We live in a world of finite resources. The more and more there is being produced, the more we buy, and inevitably, there will be more that we throw away. Whenever possible, choose the eco-friendly, sustainable options. Embracing you also means embracing, loving, and being mindful of the earth that sustains us all (and all other unique creatures we share this planet with). I strive to be eco-conscious with my purchases, and that includes eating organic foods.
GOAL OF THE WEEK: Pick at least one strategy from the above (or any other that you think of) and try it for 1 week, even if its just for 20 minutes a day. Its worth embarking on this path. How do you feel after each session? How do you feel after the 1 week? Do you feel that you’re moving towards your true authentic self?
I end here with my favorite quote on this topic, so elegantly and concisely stated – you know, Well Said:
“At bottom every man knows well enough that he is a unique being, only once on this earth; and by no extraordinary chance will such a marvellously picturesque piece of diversity in unity as he is, ever be put together a second time.”– Friedrich Nietzsche –
Embrace You. Live Well Natured.
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, at no cost to you. If you click on a link and make a purchase, we make a small commission. Read our full disclosure for more information. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
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