Okay, so we all have heard the quotes about “loving yourself”. Yes, that is a very important thing to do. However, what a lot of people who struggle with this don’t realize is that you have to know who you are before you can love yourself. Make sense? Sure, the words make sense. But finding yourself is not an easy process. It takes love, loss, betrayal, happiness, and a lot of other emotions to really bring out your true self. It also takes doing things alone, for yourself. Nobody can really help you, but people who know you closely may be able to provide support along the way.
Our world focuses on our egos. How we look, what we say, who we talk to/who we don’t. From a young age we adopt a viewpoint that makes us put up a front, an illusion of who we want people to think we are. Well, over time that gets confused inside of us, and becomes ingrained in our mental self image. If you’re not careful, you end up completely unsure of yourself and all that you are. Part of growing up is realizing when you hit this point. You suddenly think things like “what do I even want to do with my life” and “no one understands me”. You start worrying and become obsessed with “figuring out” who you are.
The thing is, you don’t have to “figure out” anything. You already know who you are, you’ve just buried it underneath this facade of who you’ve been pretending to be. There are certain ways I’ve found to really center myself and get back to my true identity, but I know it’s a different journey for each individual.
The first thing I do when I feel like I’m losing myself is lost everything I love. Everything. Activities, things, people, and whatever else comes to mind. Then I try to make sure I do more of what I love, talk to certain people and tell them I appreciate them, and also go to places I enjoy as often as possible. Personally, being outside in the natural world, like near a river/hiking trail, anything I can get to readily, helps me clear my head. However, it takes a lot of time, a little bit of emotional stress, and going through hard times to really get a feel for it.
The more you do things you love, are around people you love and who love you, you can more easily see your true self. If you don’t want to do something (that’s optional), don’t. If you don’t want to talk to certain people, or if you do, do it. Follow your instincts rather than social normalities and I promise you’ll feel better in the long run. Obviously there’s a lot to the process, but little things contribute and assist you along the way.