To Thine Own Self Be True

A couple months ago I was sitting on the couch watching Netflix with a beer in one hand and a chocolate bar in the other. It was relaxing, it was comforting, it was peaceful, and it was everything I wished was not true about myself. You see, for the last 10 years or so I have been on a journey, like many others, to “get fit” and be healthy”. Oh sure I was good in short spurts. There was the cabbage soup diet that was attempted 3 times. I lost 15 lbs one time and quickly gained them back. Another time I made it halfway through the first day. But it hasn’t just been eating and working out. It has been time spent on the phone, or how I treat my wife and kids or my work ethic. How about you? Is there something in your life that you have been trying to change for days, weeks, months, years, decades?

In the therapy world this might be referred to as “incongruence”. Psychologist Carl Rogers theorized that the fully functioning human lived in harmony with his/her deepest feelings and impulses. He said that,

“Becoming a person means that the individual moves towards ‘being’, knowingly and acceptingly, the process in which he inwardly and actually ‘is’. He moves away from being a facade… he is not trying to be more than he is…he is not trying to be less than he is”

Another famous quote that seems to fit might be from Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet’ where Polonius says, “This above all: to thine own self be true”. Where in your life might you not be being completely true to yourself? Are there some situations where you are puffing yourself up more than you ought to be? Perhaps you are playing too small and need to have a little self confidence!

When we can align our inward hopes and dreams and feelings for who we should be in the world with our actual selves we will find that life will bring us more peace and calm. We can go to sleep at night knowing that we lived up to our own expectations. Not those of others.

While there are practical steps that can be taken to remedy some of these issues it is also helpful to look inward. Here are a few quick tips to help you discover some of the things that consistently hold you back from being who you want to be…

Find some space to be quiet with yourself for 5-10 min. Put the phone down (that may be part of the problem) and write down things you have wanted to do but have not. Characteristics you have wanted to embody but have not.
Have these notes handy and reflect on them daily. Multiple times if possible. See what happens when you don’t act or behave in ways you want to. Notice what’s going on around you. Do you consistently mess up at a certain time of day? Is it consistently with the same friend or work colleague?
Don’t beat yourself up! If you think you are the only one who feels this way or deals with this you are not! We are all in the same boat.
If you feel like you want a partner on this journey come talk to me! At OnBoard Coaching, my passion is for you to live your life to its fullest, whatever that looks like to you!

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