“We have all experienced those moments in life when we felt loved, secure, and at peace; that is your true self shining through. This core self is the real basis for all successful and rewarding relationships in your life. The true self is fundamentally different than our false self with its ego-centered desires, judgments, and goals. When we try to establish relationships based on our ego needs, we invariably find conflict.”
This was the message of Day 3 of the most recent Oprah Deepak Chopra 21 Day Meditation Experience. Day 3 really resonated with me because as fall approached, I made a vow to “turn a new leaf” and really connect with my authentic self. This can be a challenging thing in a world where we are all supposed to look and act a certain way to be accepted.
What does authentic self even mean? Your authentic self is who you are in your truest form. The authentic self is your genuine and innate substance of your being. Some may consider this your soul or something to that effect. This authentic self is the basis of who we are at our core, but it tends to get lost in translation once the world comes in.We are constantly inundated with information projecting what we should be, what we should look like, how we should act and how we should navigate the world. Oftentimes, this is a conflict for our authentic self. When this happens, then we feel confused as to whether we should be who we really are or who “they” want us to be. Once other people, social norms, societal pressures, jobs, education, our ego etc get involved, we tend to start putting forth our representative, or false self as described above. We start sending our representative into the world as a means to protect our authentic self which tends to be much softer and vulnerable. We learn which representative or false self to send into different situations and we get good at faking it until we make it. The problem with all of this is, we get so busy trying to protect our truest self that we become disconnected with it.
The term “just be yourself” is used all the time, but most of the time, we don’t even know who or what that is so we just continue being a representative, a shell of our authentic self. As we get older, we look back and realize that we don’t even like who we are or what we’ve become. We realize that we’ve been doing a lot of things because that was just what we had always done. A lot of people don’t even know what truly brings joy to their lives because they are so caught up in pleasing everyone else. If/when this happens, don’t just ignore it and keep doing the same old thing, CHANGE IT! Find yourself again. Get back to the bare bones of who you truly are. It is never too late.
Throughout this holiday season and coming up on the New Year, I challenge you to really take a look at who you really are. I don’t mean what you do for a living or what your family needs/expects from you. I mean who are you in your truest, wisest, most genuine and realest form? What do you like? What do you dislike? How do you feel? What do you value? What brings light into your world? What would it take for you to let that light shine?
Remember, your authentic self is enough and is probably more than your representative could ever embody, let your light shine.