In the last few days the theme “be yourself” keeps coming up. And when God keeps bringing something to my attention, I always like to pay attention to the lesson I’m supposed to learn. Sometimes I feel like I struggle with saying what I mean, doing what I love or relaxing around certain people. Yet even if I’m confident and sure that I’m comfortable being “me,” at times, there is often room to go a little deeper – an opportunity to uncover another layer and free myself to be more ME.
Not being at ease with myself can be so draining.
In fact I often don’t even realize the amount of energy it drains keeping a smile on my face, attempting to be perfect, pleasing other people and trying to make myself fit into situations that simply are not me.
Some of the strategies that help me be myself and maximize my best me are:
Say what I need to say.
- Am I beating around the bush?
- Too afraid to speak up?
- Have I found myself telling a “little lie” to avoid embarrassment or telling the truth? (Yeah I don’t mind staying late to help you out).
These are clear signs I’m not being me. Identify at least one situation in which you have not said what you need to say. When you finish reading this, go to who you need to go to and just say it. If you can’t say it now, then mark your calendar for the day and time when you will. Being YOU means being honest, so you don’t waste precious energy pretending all is well when it isn’t.
Wear what makes me feel my best.
It may seem superficial, but it’s not. Clothing is a language all its own. What does yours say about you? And is that message consistent with who you truly are. When I transitioned from working in the marketing department of a major ministry that focused on dressing in corporate attire, to my current work in health coaching and working in my Purium Biz, I changed my daily wardrobe. Out with the suits and long skirts and in with a more relaxed, fun look. Be creative to dress in a way that makes you feel good, even when your choices are restricted for professional reasons.
Do what I know is right.
There is nothing more authentic than living my values. When my actions don’t line up with my beliefs, inner turmoil is sure to follow. When I do what’s right I have a sense of peace about my decisions and actions.
Give myself permission to be imperfect.
Most of the time, when I am uncomfortable in my own skin, it is because I haven’t given myself permission to be human. In other words: permission to be imperfect. When I relax, I enjoy myself more. When I value the journey as much, if not more, than the destination, I embrace the fact that there will be bumps along the road – but they don’t have to keep me from reaching my destination.
Anytime I feel myself getting anxious, feeling tempted to step away for just being me, I take a deep breath. Breathe and get centered again. It’s such a simple concept – just like being you.