The last few weeks have been Go-Go-Go here, thus, the week-late blog post – my apologies, and thank you for your patience and understanding!
Last weekend, I took the opportunity to travel to Toronto to attend a Professional Speakers Federation workshop. What an incredible experience! I learned so much from the presentation, but I also got the pleasure to grow and connect with so many like-minded, strong, passionate, and driven people looking to make a difference in the world by staying true to themselves. It was amazingly uplifting and validating to who I am as a coach, speaker, and human being.
In the last KISCC blog, Staying True to You – Part I, I asked you to consider some reflection questions to help connect with yourself. How did that go? What came up for you in those quiet moments with yourself? I hope you were able to take some time for that inner-self reflection because today’s blog post is going to have you shift gears from the inner focus to an outer focus to help you find ways to stay true to yourself.
“About all you can do in life is be who you are. Some people will love you for you. Most will love you for what you can do for them, and some won't like you at all.”
The message you probably often hear about trying to change habits and behaviors to become a better version of yourself is that it’s all up to YOU to make it happen – it’s about your willpower and determination, and if you want it badly enough, you just have to dig down deep in your soul and DO IT. Right? This (more than likely) is what you have been told either consciously or subconsciously for much of your life. The problem is – what happens when you don’t do “it”? Or, when you do “it” for a while, and then you fall right back into old patterns and go-to’s? If you’re like most people, waves of shame or guilt, and negative self-talk wash over you – “Why can’t I stick to this?” or “If I just tried harder” or “If I really cared about this, I would do it” or “I give up – I guess I’m not meant to have/be this”…the list of negative self-talk phrases could go on and on. I know. I’ve been there. Many, many times.
What you may not often hear about is how much of your surrounding environment impacts and influences not only your identity, but also your “ability” to stick to being true to your Self and making the changes you want or need to make in your life. I’m talking about the relationships you have in your life, your job, your income, your health, your responsibilities and obligations, your home, the resources you are able to access or not access (i.e. health care, financial services, healthy food, reliable transportation, time, etc.) – ALL – play a role in whether or not making successful lasting change in your life is easier or more difficult to do. For some of you, it’s quite possible that even finding ten minutes to be alone with yourself is a luxury!
So, here are some ideas to help you identify the impact your environment has on your efforts to stay true to yourself. They will also help you consider what changes could be made so that your surroundings benefit your goals instead of getting in the way of them.
First of all, get curious about the relationships you have in your life. Consider which close family members, friends, and colleagues lift you up and unconditionally accept you for who you are and who you want to be. Also think about which relationships expect you to be who THEY want you to be. What options are available for being around those who are like-minded and who support you more often?
Secondly, make a list of all the resources you have access to at this time in your life. How do they support you in making lasting change and staying true to yourself? For example, maybe you have access to a reliable babysitter, how can this resource be used to help you move forward with your goals? Additionally, consider what resources are missing that could provide you with further opportunities to achieve your vision? What options are available to access some of these needed resources?
Finally, what (or who) can you let go of that may be holding you back from being true to yourself and going after what you want in your life? And, if letting go of some things or people isn’t an option, what can be done to improve the likelihood of you being you and making lasting change in spite of them?
“Never dull your shine for somebody else.”
Now, I never said that staying true to yourself would be easy. There are so many positive and negative influences in your life that can shift your perception of who you think you are on any given day. And, depending on how you’re feeling, how you’ve been taking care of yourself, or the supportive or toxic environments you might find yourself in – your perception can work in your favor – or not.
Staying true to yourself takes time and energy, so focusing on developing a strong, healthy relationship with Self, to not be easily deterred from your path, is an essential part of the journey. Please find the time to discover more about you; being able to count on yourself is important.
Many heartfelt thanks for reading today’s blog! If you found this post worthy, please be sure to share it with someone you love.
Until next time…
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