The magical moment in this photo lasted several minutes. It happened to my friend Tim, who is also one of those people who is 100% authentically himself all the time. He is irreverent, incorrigible, irrepressible and consequently adored for those reasons. He is the poster child for the point I want to make here. We are each a gift to the world; if we just let ourselves be true to our nature.
The idea that “being true to ourselves is an essential gift only we can give ourselves” came to me while doing the two-day workshop last weekend. I was deeply moved and struck by how many participants have suffered greatly trying to accommodate others. Whether it was from trying to make an abusive relationship work, trying to meet others’ career expectations or muting their own nature to be more accepted, the results are the same. They’re tired of the hurt and ready to reclaim their true nature. Thanks to their determined decision, they are doing it!
How do we claim the gift of our true nature? Here are some of my thoughts:
TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS
It sounds like a simple enough premise – trust your instincts. Why is it so hard? Our instincts are one of the powerful wisdom gifts from our soul, but our western culture favors rational thought over our instinct’s knowledge.
Consequently, we often think away the instinctive nudges that say something isn’t right. “Give it a little longer, try harder, I must be doing something wrong, I can change it” are examples of the self-talk we give ourselves when something is off kilter. And we work harder and harder to create internal balance until finally, something breaks that says “ENOUGH IS ENOUGH”.
That breaking point is the soul’s wisdom again – talking loudly and repeatedly until we finally listen. Imagine, if we connect to our inner stillness long enough to hear and heed that internal warning. Then we would be honoring our true nature.
Listen to the quiet voice inside that tells you the truth – your soul knows.
RELEASE TOXIC PEOPLE AND EMBRACE THE ONES WHO SUPPORT YOU
Being true to yourself is much easier when you are surrounded by family, friends and loved ones who support you. More often though, there are toxic people involved that are part of the problem. From difficult parents, partners, friends, bosses or coworkers, concerns about the consequences of releasing them keep people hostage in tough situations.
Toxic people may disagree with your best laid plans, plant seeds of fear or doubt, and undermine your confidence with the slightest of comments. Concerns about their reactions tends to take priority, creating a sense of emotional bondage.
Getting freed from the impact of difficult people can start with something as simple as taking your focus off them and putting it on those you can count on. A plan of gradual distancing can work and ease the pain.
Certainly, in any situation where violence is involved, this change must be carefully considered and is best done with help and support. In any case, priority must focus on releasing the toxic people who surround you.
We need friends and loved one who match us, see our true nature and honor us.
MEAN WHAT YOU SAY AND SAY WHAT YOU MEAN
Many people have been raised to believe that “if you can’t say something nice, don’t say it at all”. In business and politics there’s an art to the diplomacy of finessed comments and opinions. Both situations can leave a person silent. The contrast we’ve witnessed in the presidential campaign, with full throttle hostile, aggressive, insinuating words only create more conflict.
There is a middle ground and a fine line that must be drawn. It means honoring yourself and not compromising your truth. It means standing up for yourself, saying NO when you mean it and calmly speaking your mind. This essential skill takes practice, tactful determination and firmness. The clearer the knowing, the clearer the message can be delivered.
Know your truth and speak it, you stand to lose when you don’t.
RAISE YOUR EXPECTATIONS
Give yourself permission to raise the bar of expectation on what you receive in life. More often it’s done in reverse. We raise the bar on what we expect of ourselves, giving more and trying harder, rather than putting ourselves in situations where what we give is received with reciprocity.
Reciprocity is what we all need to glow and grow. When we’re in personal or professional situations that match our nature, there is a flow of exchange. Appreciation is given and received. In environments of mutual respect, it becomes easy and natural to step up, open up and be authentic.
When the flow is blocked and there is limited recognition, it often means you’re not in the right situation. If you’re giving and doing more than you receive, it will ultimately drain you. It’s hard to be happy and true to yourself when you’re depleted and not receiving enough in return. Keep searching until there’s a match.
It is never too much to ask to be respected, recognized and appreciated.
The world needs us and our gifts. Despite the pressures to focus on performance and output, we all need room to be true to our creative and imaginative selves. We are never so stuck that there aren’t options to give ourselves the gift of our true nature. I certainly see this change with the people I have the honor of working with.
By trusting our instincts, releasing toxic people and bringing those who honor us in closer, speaking our truth and expecting more from life, we can all shine. We may not be as bold as Tim, but we will certainly love life more.
Does this topic strike a chord for you? Would you love the confidence, freedom and certainly that comes from being true to yourself? The Transformational Life Coaching work I do is designed to help you claim your true nature and gifts so you shine and grow. See my website for more details, www.spectrumtransformation.com and use the Free Consultation button if you want to know more. I’d love to hear from you!