Everyday in my inbox I get subject suggestions for postaday2011. Most of them so far have been BS political crap, but today (or yesterdays, whatever), legitimately intrigued me. The question is “how do you stay true to yourself”?
One reason I find it really interesting is because I am still finding and exploring myself and identity. My inner dialogue, fantasy life (sexual and otherwise), dreams (the ones you have at night) and life goals have all drastically changed in about 6 short months.
Part of the reason my whole life turned around is because I started to pay attention, and I think be true to myself.
But what does being ‘true’ to yourself, or anything or anyone for that matter, Actually mean? The concept of truth is more or less a synonym for honesty, and that word seems less comlplicated and with fewer implications than truth. Honesty, to me, is just refraining from lying. So, how do I refrain from lying to myself? I think it has to do with my thoughts, emotional feelings and some internal, physical feelings finding congruence with one another. I have to pay attention to those (and perhaps other) elements in any given situation to stay true or be honest with myself.
I used to oppress, out of childhood training and ignorance, what I really thought, felt, needed, wanted, etc. I can remember well this feeling I used to get (and sometimes still do) in my… Well, sphincter area (STOMACH, aka cardia) when I would agree with someone else because I felt intimidated, lacked confidence in my thoughts and intelligence, and didn’t want to rock the boat. Because of this, I was often, in retrospect anyway, in situations where I had to convince myself of personal satisfaction or happiness, constantly noting the reasons why this or that is good for me, why I should do this, and ignoring that knawing, irritating feeling in my the middle of my abdomen. Haha, indeed, it’s a gigantic triumph that I can even recognize such feelings in myself.
Forcing yourself to do some unpleasant things isn’t universally or always untrue or damaging to the self. However, when I picked à college major that isn’t what I really wanted to learn, and stayed for reasons that I’m still not settled with, it is damaging. So is jumping into à relatonship with someone I barely knew, because I couldn’t at that time identify or admit my feelings of insecurity, neediness, emptiness or loneliness. I ignored the excitement that I felt when I thought about switching my major to English and Creative Writing and reading classic novels, as well as the feelings and even CLEAR thoughts and doubts that something between my ex and I was just not right.
Well that’s enough of that sad story…
The next step in the process is making a decision based on recognizing the thoughts, feelings, etc. I’ll write more later, but now I can’t stand writing on this iPad any longer.