Are you afraid to be yourself?
We live in a world of tall poppy syndrome, and in the fear of people knocking us down for our success, ambition, having an opinion or being a little quirky. It is becoming more prevalent that people are scared to be themselves.
After chatting to a group of mid 20 year old women, 85% of them said that they have never felt like they could ever be themselves. Common themes were they are always over thinking everything they say in the fear of being judged. All that time up in our heads, no wonder the rates of anxiety are so high. According to Beyond Blue One in six young Australians is currently experiencing an anxiety condition.
This means that people are spending so much energy in thinking about what they are saying instead of being raw and expressing themselves. The moment we do not honour ourselves our energy stops flowing and we can become unrecognisable to ourselves. I read a great book called “The Alchemy of the Desert” by Cynthia Athina Kemp Scherer and my favourite quote form it is “When we pretend to be or feel what we are not, we deny ourselves the enjoyment of who we really are".
Many of us think that we have to say, or feel, or be something other than what we are. We say things that we don’t mean, thinking that it is what others want to hear. We pretend to feel things that seem acceptable so that others will approve of us. In this way we hide our true selves, both from others and our own selves. We bury our light in the mire of pretense and ‘trying to’.
What type of world are we creating for the future generations if we walk around on eggshells over thinking what we say - crippling our right to free speech and opinions.
Years I had spent toning myself down in the fear that people wouldn’t like who I was - worrying that I was too much or too intense because I was a ball of love and thought that people would find me annoying so I stood behind a mask and was a bundle of nerves. Funnily enough it was those moments that I did let people in to see the real me that relationships blossomed and those deeper connections were developed and flourished.
The one thing that I have learnt as I am getting older is that if people don’t like you or have an issue with you, it is generally their own shit that they have going on and are just projecting on to you. In this instance, all you can do is send love and compassion their way and hope that one day they can obtain peace with whatever insecurities they are dealing with. As long as you lead a life this way you are being true to yourself.
Let your guard down:
I myself find it extremely difficult to let my guard down and open up and be myself which I identified and have been working on, it’s not something that’s easy, but it’s necessary to grow, flourish and build a meaningful life.
Don’t be scared to tear away those onion peels, surrender those masks, put yourself out there and dare to be vulnerable. REMEMBER - You should never apologize for being you. DARE to GLOW.