I never used to be who I really was. I used to pretend. I used to put on a show. I used to put on a mask. I used to try and be who I thought others wanted me to be. I think everyone’s been here at some point in their lives, and I’m sure we can all agree that it’s not much fun. When I started being myself, it was one of the best things that had ever happened to me. I couldn’t have imagined the changes it would make in my life. Looking back on it, some of the below are obvious, and some less so. So, what will happen when you finally start being yourself?
1. You’ll have more fun
I smile more. I laugh more. I play more jokes. I’m creative. I’m crazy. Life’s just better.
2. You’ll care less about what others think
My decisions are my business. No one else’s. I make them and I have to live with the consequences. I’ve learned the hard way that if you try to make others happy at your own expense, surprise surprise, it doesn’t make you happy.
3. You’ll know what you want
At the very least, I know what direction to go in. As the dialogue from Alice in Wonderland goes:
“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to.”
“I don’t much care where –”
“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”
4. You’ll make decisions with ease
I know what’s important to me. I know what’s more important and less important. It’s quite difficult to not make decisions when you know this stuff.
5. You’ll be more respected
I was more honest and more forthcoming with my opinion and people respected that, even if they didn’t like it. I wasn’t afraid to act like who I really was and, again, if people didn’t like it, they sure respected it.
6. You’ll respect yourself more
This was a bit of a surprise in a way. More because I didn’t know that when I wasn’t being myself I didn’t have a whole lot of respect for myself. And why would I? If, deep down, I knew who I really was and yet wasn’t acting like it, how could I respect myself?
7. You won’t doubt yourself
This is not to say that I think everything is going to always and forever work out fantastically. It’s more that I’m happy with my decisions and so I can live with the consequences, whatever they might be.
8. You’ll love you some you
It’s really hard not to when you’re being yourself and having fun and are happy. It’s just an awesome feeling when you start being yourself, and “I love me some me” sums that up pretty well. It’s not arrogance. It’s knowing you deserve to love who you are.
9. You’ll dream big
I know who I am. I’m confident in who I am. I know what direction to go in. Do I know I can achieve all of my wildest dreams? No. How could I? But am I scared to try? Hell no. The time to act is now. It always is.
10. You’ll want to grow
I’ve been interested in learning and growing and developing for the last 8 years. My passion for it increased over time and was especially intense when I was on the edge of finding out (admitting?) who I really was. Now I want to grow more broadly. I want to learn about life. About business. About money. About relationships. And, when you do this, you can’t help but grow personally. Win win.
11. You’ll feel proud of yourself
It’s not always easy. Like anything worthwhile. It’s easy to be dragged along in life without ever really taking control. For me, that’s no way to live. I want to take control. I want to create my own life. So every time I make a choice that empowers me, that creates something, that the real me would make… I’m proud.
12. Your thoughts will become actions
Thoughts aren’t real. Thinking about something doesn’t make it happen. You have to actually stand up and do something. It’s blindingly obvious, but it’s a truth I rarely paid attention to. When it came to creating the life I really wanted, anyway. I’d always say “yeah, one day.” And I’d think about it. Daydream about it. Wish for it. But never do anything.
Now I’m just being me, I act. I do. I make things happen. I know what I want and I’m decisive. Why wouldn’t I do? What would I be waiting for?
13. You’ll be more relaxed
“Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you are.”
I love that quote. And I believe in it. I used to worry a lot and I think this is why.
14. You’ll inspire people
“You’ve also kind of been an inspiration for me, as a lot of what you’ve said over the past 6ish months has really struck a chord with me and made me think loads about what it is I want from life. So, thank you. Just for being you :)”
This was in an email I received after a girl I worked with had decided to quit and go do what she really wanted. I was ecstatic. I’d essentially helped someone by accident, but it felt amazing. This one isn’t about bragging. It’s about saying that when you start being yourself, people notice. Everyone wants to be who they really are so it’s difficult for people to not be inspired when they see someone who’s doing it right in front of them. I’ve been inspired the same way plenty of times in my life. I hope that continues and I hope I can continue to inspire others.
15. You’ll be happy
This might be the most important one. I was being myself and I was happy because of it. Does anything else really matter?
Featured photo credit: Len Matthews via flickr.com