Find yourself and reclaim the real you! But how do you embark on a journey of self-discovery? Although to some it may sound like a vague task, there are some practical things that you can do. In this article we’ll discover three possible routes to finding yourself.
We live in a complicated world that seems to expect us to be lots of different things all at the same time. Very rarely are we called on just to be ourselves – yet strangely when we see that in others we applaud it! If we could understand ourselves and accept ourselves for who we are, we would also have greater capacity to understand and accept others. So what can you practically do to start finding yourself?
Roles and identity
Think about the number of roles that you play, at work and at home, in your family and with friends. Maybe you are the big sister and the dependable employee, or the strong man and the responsible provider. Over time your sense of identity can become determined by your more dominant roles.
Start to become aware of the many roles that you play – to what extent do they determine your identity? Who are you without them? It is difficult to find yourself when you are stuck in all these roles and becoming aware of them is the first step to becoming unstuck.
The secrets hidden in language
Our language can be revealing of some of the thoughts, feelings and beliefs that we have. Start to become aware of what you think and say. What does that reveal about the “rules of life” that you have built up over your lifetime? Which of them are truly yours and which have been acquired without you realising it? The word “should” in your language can often give away some of these beliefs – it suggests there is a rule about how things “should” be.
When you become aware of these many rules you then have the power to choose whether these are genuinely yours or are unhelpful rules that can now be discarded. Become aware of the secrets hidden in your language and you have made a start on reclaiming your true self.
Seeing yourself from the outside
The third possible way is to take an objective view of yourself. To see yourself as you really are rather than your current perceptions of yourself.
It has been said that the “truth will set you free” – but how do you find out the truth about yourself? It is very difficult to see yourself objectively from the outside, as all we can really do is see ourselves subjectively from the inside. Asking others for feedback is certainly a step in the right direction, but all we might then see is their subjective view of us, further shaped by the relationship that we have with them!
This is where a good a professional coach could come in. With no other agenda apart from being a professional coach to support your self-discovery, they will be able to feed back to you objectively. Being non-judgemental and non-directive in their approach, they can act as a mirror to increase your self-knowledge. Whilst no mirror is without its flaws and distortions, a good coach will be aware of their main flaws and seek to minimise them.
If you are embarking on a journey of self-discovery to find yourself, then you may be interested in reading more about it in Andy Turnbull’s book “Finding Yourself: Understanding Yourself and Relating to Others” which can be found here.