“Maybe being oneself is always an acquired taste.” Patricia Hampl
I stumbled across the above quote the other day, and it immediately spoke to me. I am definitely going through a phase in my life where I am learning to be more authentically me, instead of being who others want me to be or what society wants to me to be. I am taking the risk to be who I really am, and it certainly does feel like a risk sometimes!
For anyone who is a follower of self help or personal development, we know that the gold at the end of the rainbow is finding out what it means to truly be our real self and to live from that self as often as possible. As the above quote says, though, sometimes living from your authentic self can take some getting used to and can be an acquired taste.
It can be scary to be your real self, especially when your real self goes against the grain of society. Fortunately I have received nothing but positive feedback on my website since I launched it, but honestly it took a bit of a leap of faith when I first created it because I had no idea whether people would respond to it or not. When I was a little girl and began reading self help books and scouting out the best personal growth resources, it certainly wasn’t as “mainstream” as it is today and people hadn’t fully recognized the value of self help resources yet.
It can be scary to be your authentic self when you find out that what your authentic self wants is a little bit out there! For example, if your real self is telling you it wants to grow up and get married to someone of the same race, have 2.2 kids, a dog, a white picket fence, and work for the same company your entire life, then that person might not feel as much apprehension at being their true selves as someone whose real desire deep down is to own their own business rather than doing the worker-bee thing, or not get married, or not have children. Everyone has their own right to pursue whatever dreams their heart desires, but unfortunately society does not always remember that.
Think about Barack Obama when he ran for president. He’s said that he feels it was his destiny to run for and be elected as president. So far things seem to be working out for him, but I’m sure when his inner self first started telling him to run for president he probably felt feelings of apprehension and fear. I know I would! Just to know that I was meant to run for president of the United States, let alone as the first African-American candidate to be elected, would take me a little time to get used to. It takes a lot of courage to step outside the box that society has placed around us.
The good news is, our authentic selves know the bigger picture and when you are brave enough to truly live from your authentic self, doors will fly open that you never even dreamed were possible! Opportunities will fall into your lap without you barely having lifted a finger, and people will appear in your life seemingly out of nowhere who can help you fulfill your dreams. All of a sudden things will really start to fall into place in your life. You will be amazed at how much more “in the flow” you are, and will wonder why you didn’t start living from your authentic self sooner!
If you need help getting in touch with your authentic self and finding the courage to be able to live from it full-time, please check out Jeannette Maw’s Art of Self-Love. I highly recommend it! There are not a ton of resources out there that explain what self-love is and how to love yourself, but this one really gets the job done. I have been following Jeannette's work for years, and admire everything she does.
I recently published an article on self-love on ezines.com, and was surprised when it received twice the number of hits as other articles I had published that were not related to self-love. Apparently people are really resonating with this idea of loving and accepting yourself as you are, and living your life from that place!
Again, for Jeannette Maw's "Art of Self-Love", please go here.