A world of known and unknown opportunities become available when you’re able to start being okay with who you are. Doing this however is much easier said than done. Grappling with the person staring back at you in the mirror will likely be one of the longest fights for the remainder of your life. At times you’ll celebrate who you are, other times you’ll struggle with who you are, and sometimes you’ll be totally unsure who you are, or who you want to be. All of these are part of living, and you should be reminded now…
IT’S PERFECTLY OKAY TO FEEL ALL OF THESE THINGS!
Life is full of peaks, valleys and plateaus happening mentally, physically and emotionally for various periods of time. How each one of us reacts during these periods will vary, but learning to fully accept yourself, and your feelings at all of these points in life could be a difference maker for overall happiness. Here are five factors to consider that may help the process.
1. Being Okay With Your Outer and Inner Self
On macro and micro levels, today’s world constantly pushes us towards its own standard of who it believes you should be. With constant pressures telling you how to look, feel, think and act, especially those stemming from social media and our own thoughts, it’s easy to see why feelings of anxiety and depression run rampant among the millennial and gen z populations.
The reality is that most of us won’t meet several of the subjective criteria thrust upon us simply because it’s not who we are, nor who were meant to be and that’s okay! Loving yourself inside and out despite these circumstances is key to navigating, or outright avoiding several pitfalls in our interactions within society, and more importantly with ourselves. Below are a few words of wisdom helping put things into better perspective:
- Accept your past, enjoy your present, and embrace your future, for these represent who you were, who you are, and who you have yet to become.
- You are one of a kind, and the world is lucky to have ever known you.
- Life is lead by what’s in your heart. Therefore choose to fill it with happiness and contentment.
- While you look to others as your example, rest assured someone is looking to you as their example.
- Control and influence are things you give to others. You can just as easily take them away.
2. Being Okay With Your Strengths and Weaknesses
Part of being okay with who you are is accepting your areas of power and struggle as they are. From a personal development and growth standpoint, none of us are going to be the best at everything. The beauty though is since none of us will be good at everything, all of us can help one another get better at something.
That being said, encouragement in our strengths and weakness can found through a lens of “humble brag”. On one end lies opportunities to excel and flourish in your areas of strength, and on the other end lies a world of improvement and growth opportunity in your areas of weakness. No matter how “strong” or “weak” are defined, comfort can be found in knowing that opportunity exists on both sides of the equation.
All factors considered, the most important variable is of course YOU! The sum total of your strengths and weakness is an essential part of who you are. Reconciling with this fact in the face of what society says, and more importantly your own thoughts and feelings helps avoid unnecessary stress, and improves overall optimism and outlook.
3. Being Okay With Putting Yourself First
For many, this serves as a large stumbling block hindering self-care and mental health. To clarify, “putting yourself first” isn’t intended to mean do whatever you wish regardless how it affects others. On the contrary, it means being comfortable protecting and preserving your own well being even when it may be frowned upon by others, most importantly yourself.
In all honestly, the concept of putting yourself first is indeed harder than it sounds. This is partly because virtues such as selflessness, discipline and sacrifice have been explicitly and implicitly misrepresented in ways that effectively demonize most scenarios where an individual places themselves at the center. The real balancing is knowing when it’s okay to do so.
In a matter-of-fact sense, putting yourself first is a matter of overall health and wellness. Depending on the circumstances, this could mean placing yourself ahead friends and family, customs and traditions, career demands and other high value influences impacting your life. While doing this is undoubtedly tough, there will be times where it’s the best thing you can do for yourself.
4. Being Okay With Expressing Yourself
Each of us are uniquely special individuals. We all have our ticks and quirks that make us well… Us! Surprisingly, most of this is actually genetic so we literally can’t help various aspects of our personality. Ideally, we would have a less harder time simply being who we are as a result, but as many people can attest to this isn’t always the case.
Despite living in times where differing world views, lifestyle preferences and personal convictions have caused intense opposition between groups of people, we still owe it to ourselves to reasonably express who we are, what we believe, and how we feel as often as necessary. Something most of us find may surprising in allowing ourselves to be open and vulnerable is how many people share our thoughts, feelings and similar experiences.
That being said, know that it’s okay to simply be yourself. After all, each of us is only human no matter our differences. Despite those differences, the U.S. founding fathers couldn’t have declared better unalienable rights available to us all. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
5. Being Okay With Not Pleasing Everyone
Let’s face it. You won’t be able to get on everyone’s good side no matter how hard you try. To make matters worse, there are those who actively wish to see others fail. As negative as it sounds, these are two factors help shed light on why each of us should ultimately be at peace knowing this is the case.
The simple fact is people can find criticism in just about anything. Because of this, our mindset and actions in response should be ones of happiness and contentment knowing they’re both supported by good intentions, and hopefully our best efforts. After all, if we’ve found a way to make being a “goody two shoes” undesirable, how much more will we inaccurately judge others in their flaws and mistakes?
All in all, being okay with who you are is a matter of embracing and accepting the fullness of yourself. It is also being able to live with everything beyond our ability to change. What have you done lately to help better accept and express who you are? Leave a reply below letting me know!
#HARDWORKEASYLIVING – Do #HWEL For Yourself
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