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3 Easy Steps to Becoming Your Authentic Self

3 Easy Steps to Becoming Your Authentic Self

“Be a first rate version of yourself, not a second rate version of someone else.” – Judy Garland

Our roles in life don’t make us who we are. We tend to base our idea of who we are on everyday roles such as parents and spouse or even what we do in our jobs or what qualifications we have. We even go to the extent of changing our personas in different social situations & acting out of character because we think we have to. Realize that by acting in this way you are not being you at your deepest level. When you begin to use the following steps to become your authentic self you will begin to experience the benefits of a happier life.

Benefits of becoming your authentic self Include:

  • Being happier
  • Feeling of fulfilment
  • Decision making becomes easier
  • Awareness increases
  • Truthful to self & others
  • Doing things on your own terms
  • Doing what you really want
  • Doing what you love
  • Satisfying your needs
  • A sense of purpose
  • Helping you prioritize how you live
  • Being in alignment with goals & dreams

Research suggests that authentic people are well-liked, and they benefit from social support and the many other positive outcomes associated with enjoying close relationships with others.

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Your Authentic Self in 3 Easy Steps

Step 1

Choosing your values are what is important to you in life.

Knowing your values helps you understand what drives you—what you enjoy, what inspires you, and what you’d like more of. By building a life and lifestyle around our values we create a life that is more satisfying and meaningful to us.

Values change over time, and deepen as you understand yourself better.

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Finally, the values list below is only to give you some ideas of  values. We are each unique, so there will undoubtedly be words that are missing from this list, and different words that sum up your value better. If so, feel free to add those words to the list below. There are hundreds of

Sample Values List

  • Accomplishment
  • Authenticity
  • Balance
  • Beauty
  • Boldness
  • Calm
  • Community
  • Compassion
  • Confidence
  • Contribution
  • Courage
  • Creativity
  • Determination
  • Excellence
  • Freedom
  • Friendship
  • Family
  • Fun
  • Growth
  • Happiness
  • Harmony
  • Health
  • Honesty
  • Independence
  • Integrity
  • Intuition
  • Joy
  • Kindness
  • Learning
  • Listening
  • Love
  • Loyalty
  • Optimism
  • Orderliness
  • Passion
  • Patience
  • Peace
  • Productivity
  • Respect
  • Self-Esteem
  • Service
  • Simplicity
  • Spirituality
  • Strength
  • Thankfulness
  • Tradition
  • Trust
  • Understanding
  • Wisdom

Step 2

Choose up to 10 words that resonate with you and make you feel good. These are the values you want to live in your everyday life. Write them down or create a poster so you can see them every day.

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So as an example, one of my values is family: I have children, I have always spent time with and meet regularly with my extended family too, and I am also close with my cousins.

Action Plan: Ensure my children’s needs are met and that they are getting my attention by having fun time, activities together, showing my love & being there for them. As for other family members I stay in contact on a regular basis.

For me I feel this is necessary because this is who I am. I would otherwise feel frustrated and guilty if I didn’t do this. However, things may be different for you.

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Step 3

Make a list of 5 to 10 activities you love to do and 5 goals you want to achieve. Look at the work you do & look at the relationships you have. Do your values you have chosen currently align with what you want to do? If not make the necessary changes. Make a plan for how you will include your activities into your life & make steps for achieving your goals. Look out for values that are sabotaging your time and energy & live for the ones that bring out your authenticity making you happy and likely to achieve your goals. Values are not set in stone so change they may change over time.

That’s it! You will find you no longer have to fill many versions of yourself only the best one. Because by following your values you live with integrity, truth and being a happier you. Don’t let your role in life define who you are, take action to become your authentic self.

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Diana Reid

CEO - Moxie House Ltd

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Last Updated on June 24, 2019

Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression

Why Social Media Might Be Causing Depression

A study [1] published in Depression and Anxiety found that social media users are more likely to be depressed. This was just one of the huge number of studies linking social media and depression[2] . But why exactly do platforms like Facebook and Instagram make people so unhappy? Well, we don’t know yet for sure, but there are some explanations.

Social Media Could Lead to Depression

Depression is a serious medical condition that affects how you think, feel, and behave. Social media may lead to depression in predisposed individuals or make existing symptoms of depression[3] worse explains[4] the study above’s senior author Dr. Brian Primack. So, the problem may not be in social media per se, but how we use it.

Signs You’re Suffering From “Social Media Depression”

If you feel like social media is having a negative impact on your mood, then you may be suffering from “social media depression.” Look for symptoms like:

• low self-esteem,

• negative self-talk,

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• a low mood,

• irritability,

• a lack of interest in activities once enjoyed,

• and social withdrawal.

If you’ve had these symptoms for more than two weeks and if this is how you feel most of the time, then you are likely depressed. Although “social media depression “is not a term recognized in the medical setting, social media depression seems to be a real phenomenon affecting around 50% of social media users. As explained in a review study[5] published in Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, if a person has a certain predisposition to depression and other mental disorders, social media use may only worsen their mental health.

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Social Media Could Crush Self-Esteem

We know that social media and depression are in some way linked, but why is this so? Well, according to Igor Pantic, MD, Ph.D.[6], social media use skews your perception about other people’s lives and traits. To explain this further, most people like to portray an idealized image of their lives, personal traits, and appearance on sites like Facebook and Instagram. If you confuse this idealized image with reality, you may be under the false impression that everyone is better than you which can crush your self-esteem and lead to depression. This is especially true for teens and young adults who are more likely to compare themselves to others. If you already suffer from low self-esteem, the illusion that everyone has it better off than you will just make you feel worse.

Causing Social Isolation and Other Negative Emotions

Another commonly cited reason for the negative impact of social media on mental health is its link with social isolation. Depressed people are more likely to isolate themselves socially and chose only to interact indirectly through social media platforms. But communication online tends to be superficial and is lacking when compared to real-life interaction explains Panic. What this means is not that social media leads to isolation but the other way around, possibly explaining why we find so many depressed persons on these sites.

Lastly, social media use may generate negative emotions in you like envy, jealousy, dislike, loneliness, and many others and this may worsen your depressive symptoms.

Why We Need to Take This Seriously

Both depression and social media use are on the rise according to epidemiological studies. Since each one has an impact on the other, we have to start thinking of healthier ways to use social media. Teens and young adults are especially vulnerable to the negative impact of social media on mental health.

Advice on Social Media Use

Although these findings did not provide any cause-effect explanation regarding Facebook and depression[7], they still do prove that social media use may not be a good way to handle depression. For this reason, the leading authors of these studies gave some suggestions as to how clinicians and people can make use of such findings.

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One suggestion is that clinicians should ask patients about their social media habits. Then they can advise them on how to change their outlook on social media use or even suggest limiting their time spent on social media.

Some social media users may also exhibit addictive behavior; they may spend too much time due to compulsive urges. Any compulsive behavior is bound to lead to feelings of guilt which can worsen depressive symptoms.

Having Unhealthy Relationship with Social Media

If you feel like your relationship with social media is unhealthy, then consider the advice on healthy social media use provided by psychology experts from Links Psychology[8]:

Avoid negative social comparison – always keep in mind that how people portray themselves and their lives on social media is not a realistic picture, but rather an idealized one. Also, avoid comparing yourself to others because this behavior can lead to negative self-talk.

Remember that social media is not a replacement for real life – Social media is great for staying in touch and having fun, but it should never replace real-world interactions.

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Avoid releasing personal information – For your safety and privacy, make sure to be careful with what you post online.

Report users who bully and harass you – It’s easy to be a bully in the anonymous and distant world of social media. Don’t take such offense personally and report those who abuse social media to harass others.

The bits of advice listed above can help you establish a healthy relationship with social media. Always keep these things in mind to avoid losing an objective perspective of what social media is and how it is different from real life. If you are currently suffering from depression, talk to your doctor about what is bothering you so that you can get the treatment you need to get better. Tell your doctor about your social media use and see if they could give you some advice on this topic.

Reference

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