I went through life as a passive observer merely going where the wind or my friends took me rather. I didn’t realize I wasn’t making my own decisions or choices that would emotionally benefit me.
“Emotionally benefit” isn’t that a loaded phrase.
I mean, much of my life, I never let myself feel. I never let my emotions show to anyone at all and so, in some ways I feel I caused myself to be numb to all elements that would evoke emotion positive or negative. Everything in life I experienced was just a part of the process. I remember thinking to myself, I should be happy. This is a really good thing, why can’t I feel happy.
It was in these moments I realized I needed to redefine who I was and I urge all of you who may relate to find you too. He or she is out there waiting. Don’t wait your whole life for the person you could be today.
My first step
This is going to sound absolutely ridiculous, but I grew up in the age of Myspace and the up and coming social media giants. Yet Myspace had a feed on the far left side that was commonly surveys. I had completed some in the past and I know I had been passive aggressive and untrue in them. It was all a front of surveys I had completed for my friends.
I would do it for real this time. Questions included: What is your favorite music? Favorite color? Favorite animal? What are you passionate about? What is your favorite childhood memory? If you could only keep five possessions what would they be? What do you want your tombstone to say? What is one of the most defining moments you’ve had in your life so far? Who do you admire?
As you see, these questions started off basic….and still were hard for me. And then got harder. Some of these have changed and some I am still searching for the best answer. Yet, I made myself not make a BS answer and take the time to think into me.
My defensive mechanism against anything that made me feel was to stay surface level on a bunch of things or to give a halfass answer I wasn’t proud of because I knew no one would push me deeper.
I began to own the choices I had made and return started to become active in my life. Any opportunity that presented itself, I made it known what that color and animal was. I wasn’t great at it at first. I wanted to crawl into my shell and I felt ridiculously vulnerable to put myself out there. I knew I could no longer let others define who I was while I am literally standing there because I don’t have the confidence to voice who I am.
You will receive the “I didn’t know that” or “I thought you liked this” or “you never said that before.” Trust me, you will receive some variations. Well, I do.
Who is someone to tell you what you like, what you feel, or who you are.
Who is nobody.
I began saying no. No to places I didn’t actually want to go. No to friends I didn’t actually want to hang out with. No to friends I knew were fair weather friends. No to back handed insults.
“You are pretty now.”
No, you’re just a bitch.
Okay. I wouldn’t go that far. But, I began crafty with handling this comments such as, I have always been pretty if you saw it or not.
Start saying yes to what you really want. It was more important for me to say no first. Saying no allowed me to cut out negativity from individuals, friends, and items of my life that brought me down. Yet, then, it became important that I drive forward it to the things I do want.
Yes to driving to small donut bakeries because I knew that would make me happy. Yes to having my alone time. Yes to being okay with situations that scared me before.
Find the things you want and do them.
Do things alone that you want to do. Some people would love this and think this is the easiest step of all, but I am not talking about reading, writing, video games, computer use alone time. These things are valuable too and you should make time to do them if they like doing them.
What I am referring to is seeing an event you really REALLY want to go to, having no one to go with, and going any way.
I wanted to go to Dana Bailey’s beauty in strength talk at her gym. I had no one to go with me…well my husband, but it wasn’t something he was really interested in. So, I went alone. I drove about 1.5 hours and I enjoyed myself. I made friends in line waiting to meet her and I had a solid workout.
I was alone, yet with some many.
There is power is finding that sense of self and independency. If you have someone to go with you– great. If not, do it anyway.
I am still working to define who I am and fully participate in life in the situations where I wanted to say something, but froze. I am still working to better myself and be the person I want, but this started through these steps.
You got this.