Guest Post by Keith Claridge
JUST BE YOU! can be the worst advice. Why? Most of us don’t really know who we actually are. From what our parents said to us, what the media tells us we should be and a memory of our failings.
Maybe you had parents who empowered you and gave you permission to be yourself. Maybe they always said the right thing. Most of us had parents who were mixed up, trying to be the best parent they could be, and were dealing with their struggles.
They more-than-likely projected their struggles on to you. This means that some of who you think you are is actually what you’re parents were struggling with (and probably their parents).
Some of your attitudes and struggles are not you. They are them.
The Media’s Messages
The media is a strong influence over all of us. We’ve been eating up their messages from the time we were children. The stories they peddle over time become strong and we accept them as true.
You have to be “this way” to be a true man. You’ve got have a body like this. You have to be funny and intelligent and sporty. You’ve got to be cool.
So we try to be all these things and fail. Let’s grab a bit of perspective. No real man can be everything they say we should be, only a made up character on tv with his funny one liners written for him can be all of those things.
Unknown to us we start acting in ways that have been heavily influenced by media.
- the clothes and brands we wear
- the words we say
- the food we eat
- the music we listen to
- the film and tv we watch
Until we’re made up of little pieces of the media. Little pieces of other human beings opinions.
And we stop listening to our voice, with our quirks, our likes, our way of expressing our true self. We become a shell of who we are at our core.
Oh, do they haunt us. In moments of quiet, which is why we surround our self with noise. They wake us up at 3am, which is why we take sleeping tablets and drink too much.
Failing is weakness. It’s bad (or so we learn). It reminds us of our vulnerability. We think we’re the only one to struggle with failings and weaknesses.
So, we choose not to confront them, we push them away, they become such a powerful force in our lives. They keep us small. They mock us.
Our fear of failing keeps us in a self made prison.
What’s the Answer?
Working out who you are. Asking the questions, “Who do I want to be?”, “Am I happy with the current version of me?”, “What was I like as a child?”
Do some deep internal work. What are your values? What’s important to you?
Have some fun “trying on different things”.
You can have a period of media silence. Stay away from all forms of media. Partner this with journaling your thoughts. Look for themes that come up. What questions come up for you.
|It doesn’t have to be a serious work. To me a big thing in life is to have fun, to smile, to laugh.|
In fact, in a world that is often super-serious and stressful, one of the most rebellious things to do is laugh. Laugh at the world and laugh at yourself.
Being you, finding out who you really are is a journey. Like every journey we go on we have to start and we take one step at a time.
Your Best Days Are in Front of You.
Find out more about Keith, follow him on Facebook and visit keithclaridge.comNeed a little more motivation and a sense of belonging with like-minded people?
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