I have a question for you: who are you trying to be? Think about that for a moment.
I used to be in this loop of trying to improve myself, creating a list of all things I wanted to do better and then I’d end up feeling bad about myself. Over the years of therapy, hypnosis and even in the first year of doing my energy practice, I focused on the wounded parts—the parts that didn’t feel good enough. It was one of those thankless jobs where the boss was never satisfied. The more I focused on the wounds, the more I was telling myself I was broken and that I was a victim of the things that happened to me and the harder I had to work to prove something to myself. Do you relate to this pattern?
There is an adage that says what you focus on, you get more of. We’ve all heard it but I don’t think most of us realize that focusing on self-improvement has an underlying message that we are not okay. We end up comparing ourselves to some ideal or other people and come up short.
If we could shift our focus from improving ourselves to understanding and revealing our gifts and talents to ourselves, we would see a huge different in our ability to enjoy this journey called life. I’m not saying you might not desire to treat your body better and shed a few pounds, or become more successful in your career, be a more patient parent or any other traditional goal that might be labeled “self-improvement.” What I am saying is that we have it backwards.
One simple shift can take the pressure off. Let’s start with the assumption that you aren’t deficient. You are already awesome just like the baby in the picture to the right. You just have to let go of the things that keep you from seeing that and using your talents. You don’t have to try to be anything you are not. You have a choice to frame this journey as the opportunity to become more fully who you are and who you were meant to be in the world or a big self-improvement project that never ends.
That best self is already inside you, waiting for you to let go of the stories that have kept you from exploring and discovering the “you” that is inside that is already special. We know this when we welcome a baby into the world. In that small beautiful face we don’t see a “to do” list, we see hope, beauty and love.
It is all in mindset. One person could be going out to exercise because she wants to take care of her body in a loving way another could be going out to exercise because she feels she won’t be loved until she wears a certain dress size. The later will probably come up with another reason why she can’t be loved if she ever reaches that dress size. Because for her there will always be something she needs to improve. She has to work really hard. The first person is still doing the same work but it comes from a nurturing place. She isn’t trying to improve herself. She takes action out of respect and love for herself right now in this moment. That’s my personal goal and that is my goal when I work with my clients—helping them release the old patterns of judgment, trying, and never feeling “good enough” and moving into a life of exploration of that self we came here to be.
What if you let go of trying to be something and fell in love with being yourself? I’d love to hear what you think.