The world does an excellent job of giving us labels and telling us who we should be. Skinny. Funny. Wealthy. Smart. Young-looking at any age. Beautiful. Together. The list is long and varies from you... to me... to the next guy.
With expectations (theirs and ours) distracting us, it’s easy to forget who we are beneath what the world says. It’s easy to strive to satisfy the outside voices and, in the process, disconnect from who we are at our core, where our truest, deepest-self resides, often forgotten.
I wish someone had told me when I was younger to check in once in a while, to reconnect with myself. I wish I had made a habit of visiting that place within and asking myself how I really feel about things. I mean... REALLY.
I wish I had spent less time looking outside of myself and more time asking probing questions. What's most important to me? What parts of myself have I lost touch with? The adventurer? The light-hearted? The compassionate? The one who was patient?
When I do this now... finally... I consistently find a part of myself that has been waiting for me to come back to her. (This exercise recently led me to rediscover my inner adventurer who had long been neglected. So. Much. Fun! Click here for that.) When I tap into those buried parts of myself, I can almost feel them releasing a big exhale from my soul, as if they are relieved, as if they are saying,
"Ahhhhhh, you're finally here. You've come back to me. You've come back to you."
Sometimes this rediscovery leads me to the fun girl who loved to laugh before life loaded me with a series of hard things that came one after the other.
Laugh, I remember. Yes! Laugh!
Sometimes I find old hurts that were easier to bury than resolve.
Heal, I am reminded. Deal, heal, and let go.
Sometimes I find pain and have wept at my realization of neglecting essential parts of myself, dropped alongside the road of life because they didn't fit someone else's expectations. Why? I lament. Why did I leave you behind? But this realization, as painful as it can be, is a poignant reminder that all parts of me that live in my core are good and worthy companions that I must safeguard. I will not abandon these parts of myself for anyone ever again. Pain, like manure, is stinky and horrible, but it is powerful fertilizer for growth.
These buried treasures (yes, even the tough ones are treasures because they are part of who we really are) are much more valuable than the labels of the world. These are the parts of us that make us... us. Real. Vulnerable. Beautiful. Scared. Hurt. Excited. All of it.
Dig deep and rediscover who you really are. Then commit to being her or him.
You at your best.
No matter what the world says.
Here's to you.... the real you... and the real me! We are our very best...
(Like what you read? Comment, like and share below 'cause someone you know needs this.)