At 3 1/2 my daughter climbed the countertops for a box of cheerios and a bowl. She was valiantly attempting to prepare her breakfast. I was incredibly threatened, “How after only a few short years, could this totally dependent being could already need me less?”
In his 1843 essay titled “Self-Reliance”, Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote about this basic human need for individuals to follow their own instincts and ideas in life. Liberating,right??!! Intimidating,Yes!!! My daughter’s innate drive for self-reliance and trusty individualism was a huge test for what Emerson coined as, “Trust Thyself”. If you are one of those people who have this type of inner confidence, naturally you most likely don’t depend on others. Here are 8 things those who don’t depend on others would understand.
1. You Have Strong Values
Whether it’s your disposition, experience, or some combination of the two, you’ve learned that truth is your religion. You live by values which naturally flow from the inner confidence and core of who you are. These values are the unshakable foundation from which you derive your sense of confidence. Those who don’t depend others to make determinations in life, are aware that truth comes from within and you use this fundamental truth to relate to the world, solve problems and set goals.
2. You Don’t Depend On Others To Make Decisions
Reserving the right to make your own decisions maintains your autonomy and independence in a world full of potential choices. Others may not agree or understand your strong “pursuit of happiness“, however there is no shame in following your instincts in discovering your path in life. Of course, it is important to be kind while asserting yourself, however it is not necessary to give into to an expectation that does not fit with what you desire.
3. You Know What You Want
Those who don’t depend on others are self-reliant and are fully aware of their direction in life due to inner confidence. You have have short and long term goals set that are realistic and attainable. You can often be labeled as stubborn, defiant, or bull-headed by family members and peers but you consider it to be inner confidence. However, because of a strong drive and sense of what is right for you; following your intuition rather than group consensus is all the direction you require. You staunchly express independent thinking in support of your own ideas and opinions.
4. You Are Informed
In knowing what you want, your thirst for knowledge helps you effortlessly move forward in life. Information is your life’s light saber; illuminating the path in the presence of uncertainty or influence. Although these are not common experiences for those who don’t depend on others, they are human experiences. Being informed keeps you well-rounded so the pressures of conformity can easily roll off and advocacy for self and others is one of your highly respected character traits.
5. You Are Seemingly Quiet
Quiet is not an accurate description, but that’s how others may experience you, however you are most likely engaging in quiet observation. Observation is a necessary tool in figuring things out. You stop, look and listen, while you observe your own as well as others’ thoughts and actions in an attempt to determine how to authentically relate to the situation. You don’t depend on the lead of others to fit in.
6. You are Okay With Making Mistakes
Those who don’t depend on others, typically don’t seek validation so making a mistake is no big deal. You fully accept the learning curve in life. As an independent person you have a “bring it on” attitude when it comes to figuring it out, knowing that mistakes lead to greater understanding. What’s the worst that can happen, right? Some of this world’s greatest entrepreneurs have confronted their deepest fears only to ultimately end up right where they belong — all because of inner confidence that carried them along.
7. You Don’t Need a Plan
Because you are resolute in your values, have identified goals, are keen in observation, and at ease with learning as you go; you let these principles guide you in your journey. Your infinite wealth of positive and negative experience provides proof that it all works out, because sometimes climbing the counter for Cheerios results in a tumble. However, you understand that a tumble is a part of success. Not needing a plan allows you to benefit from the trial and error in life because independent people thrive on learning through action.
8. You Assume Responsibility
How would any of this be possible if you weren’t a pro at taking responsibility? When self-reliant people don’t depend on others, they don’t point the finger, its just not an option. You assume ownership in all areas of your life, but you don’t beat yourself up for not being perfect. When independent people take responsibility it’s not just for all of the extrinsic stuff; they take responsibility for themselves as well, knowing that respect and trust in “thyself” is key.
Featured photo credit: Beautiful girl in forest turning her back by Viktor Hanicek via picjumbo.com