Trusting Our Inner Selves
A few years ago, I began a long journey. The goal was to accept myself just as I was. That sounds easy, but it wasn’t. Just as I seemed to be making headway, something would happen to cause me to doubt myself.
I really didn’t know how to love myself, and when I tried it seems stilted and forced. I didn’t feel as if I was enough. I didn’t know what ‘enough’ was in my life and realized that I was really trying to live up to others’ expectations or hopes for me. Not just my family, but society’s expectations.
I didn’t feel as if I was like other people. I wasn’t a groupie. I wasn’t a loner. I wasn’t drop dead gorgeous and didn’t meet society’s definition of a model.
This story of unworthiness had me trapped and I couldn’t figure out how to break the hold. I asked the universe for help, attended courses, and read every relevant book I could find.
What was the answer?
The conclusion was to stop judging myself based on what others’ thought or expected and to reach deep inside and find what truly resonated. That sounds simple, but it wasn’t. The tape in my head didn’t want to stop playing.
I had to change my story to change my view and claim the life I deserved. That’s where my “Own Your Story” Program came from. When I broke my own patterns, I knew I could help others. I couldn’t do that until I proved to myself that it was possible.
True to Myself
First, I had to be true to myself. I had no idea what that meant but I was going to find out. I realized that I had lost touch with myself and had to start forming a new relationship with the true me. I didn’t know what I really liked, what I really wanted to do, how to say no without feeling tense, how to set limits that were honorable, or how to make decisions without putting others’ needs ahead of my own.
I wondered, “What is wrong with me?”, “Am I flawed?”, or “Why do I feel as if I put my foot in my mouth so many times?”
It was difficult for me to take risks and display behaviours which were not considered ‘normal’ for me.
I sat down and wrote out a list of my strengths and flaws. Then I questioned the gifts that may be hidden in each weakness. That exercise opened my eyes. There were so many hidden gifts that were being downplayed.
I learned that when I congenially spoke my mind, I couldn’t accept responsibility for the fact that it wasn’t necessarily what the other person wanted from me. It was okay to do things alone. I didn’t have to belong to a book club and read books I didn’t enjoy. I could choose what I liked and enjoy every moment of interaction with that author.
I began to identify the types of people who resonated with me and wondered where I could meet them. I realized that I am very spiritual, yet I was associating with people who were very scientifically focused and did not hold similar beliefs. There are spiritual persons, and they were there for me to meet if I put in the effort.
When I was honest about who I was and what excited me and made me feel whole, I began to feel very vulnerable. Fear set in big time. I made the feelings of fear very personal. I didn’t see it as a normal reaction. It temporarily paralyzed me. Then I began to realize that fear can be a form of love. It is designed to keep us safe.
That realization freed me to feel the fear, honor it, make sure I was safe and move forward in the direction that was in harmony with my true self. It wasn’t easy, but it became my friend and did not become a barrier.
I realized that most of the messages that played in my head came from my childhood. These revealed the deficiencies others felt about themselves and really had little to do with me.
Remember when others talk about someone else, they are really talking about themselves.
Changing Our Expectations
Do not expect rejection, abandonment or lack of support. Expect acceptance, inclusion, and safety. Practice that with yourself and others will respond to you appropriately.
We teach others how to treat us, but we must start the pattern ourselves first.
As you know I own GDP Consulting. Let’s apply GDP to this situation:
- G means you are great just as you are. Let the Greatness of your true self shine.
- D means develop the story based on what you want for yourself and make sure the story is your own and exciting.
- P means put yourself first, always harmoniously speak your truth and protect your well-being at all time.
I know you are amazing. You have nothing to hide. You can create the world you deserve. I know because I’ve been there. You have my best wishes as you move on your path.
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- reduce stress and achieve harmony in your personal and professional life?
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Dr. Brenda Kelleher-Flight