I’ve spent a majority of my life trying to please other people. In my early 20’s especially, I wasted so much of my precious energy trying to maintain unhealthy relationships with people who really had no place in my life in the first place. In other words, I constantly tried to be someone I wasn’t. Now that I’m a bit older, I’ve come to realize that I am who I am: take me or leave me. Oh sure, I am constantly trying to better myself as a whole, but my reasons for doing so have changed. I want to be different… better… for me. Constantly pushing myself to be the best version of myself that I can be has taught me the most effective ways to be who I am, unapologetically. Here are my top 4 ways that you too can be your most authentic self, and let your freak flag fly…
1. Don’t apologize for your likes and dislikes, whatever they may be.
In order to achieve this, you must FIRST spend time getting to know yourself. I can’t tell you how many people I meet that no longer know what they enjoy doing in their free time because they spend so much time working and/or caring for their family, spouse, and home We wear so many hats as adults that sometimes who we truly are and what we enjoy gets lost in the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Get to know what your interests and passions are and do them.
In addition to this, don’t waste time and space doing things that you aren’t passionate about simply because other people are. Perhaps some of your friends enjoy going out and you’re more of a homebody. That’s perfectly OK. Just because you don’t enjoy raging all night long does not mean you’re a bad person. Maybe you’ve met people who don’t understand your need to work out daily or your passion for fitness. That’s OK too. Those aren’t your people. Focus on building relationships with people who share similar interests.
2. Be OK with repelling some people and attracting those who share the same interests.
It’s OK to let some people go who don’t share the same interests as you or who don’t understand why you devote your time and energy to certain things. In the same token, if you do what you enjoy, you will naturally attract the people in your life who are meant to be in it. An example of this for me personally is fitness. I love fitness; it is my passion, my career, and my therapy, and it has been challenging to keep people in my life who don’t understand my love and need for fitness. So, I simply let them go. People come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. Find the people who share your same passions; those people are your tribe. Surround yourself by them.
3. Practice not caring what other people think.
I say practice because not caring what other people think won’t happen overnight, unless you’re my husband who just doesn’t give a crap what other people think. Remind yourself that other peoples’ opinion of you is NONE of your business. The same goes for your opinion of someone else. It is none of your business. Just do you and you will soon realize that is so freeing to not care what others think. Live your best life and be you, for you. Fu** your haters.
4. Be clear on what you stand for.
Make sure you really know your morals, values, and non-negotiables and stand by them. As long as you are true to your core values and beliefs, the right things will always fall into place and the right people will be in your life. This goes back to number 1 above: spend time getting to know yourself and what is important to you. Also, remember that it is OK to tell someone “no” if it compromises your non-negotiables. For instance, on weekdays, my husband and I rarely go out simply because we have no desire to be out late when we have to be up by 4:30 am the next morning. So, we have no problem turning down invites from people during the week. That is a non-negotiable for us. Make sure you identify and label yours and stick to them. They can be simple, small things like not going out on weekdays or they can be larger, more complex things like always being 100% transparent with people no matter what the consequences are.
Remember that there is no one on this Earth like you. There is no one who laughs the way that you laugh, maybe you snort when you laugh or your smile is a bit crooked. There is no one who cares for their spouse, friends ,and family the way that you do or who has the same unique quirky traits as you. There is no one who brings to the table what you bring to the table each and every day. Be the authentic YOU. Confidently embrace what makes you YOU and let your freak flag fly high. Own it and wear that shit like a badge of honor.
Written By Rochelle Sonberg (rdsonberg)
Owner, Unique Performance
Post was originally written for East Valley Moms blog and original post can be found here: https://eastvalley.citymomsblog.com/be-your-most-authentic-self/