If there is one thing that stands in the way of being an authentic, wide awake joyful person it’s the fear of rejection. That buggy little voice that relentlessly asks, “What if they don’t like me if I do…say…think…”
Even though you may really, really want to do something, see something, believe in something, you keep quiet. You go along with the crowd, you pretend to agree, or you try to convince yourself that you agree. Even though you may really, really, NOT want to do something, you do it anyway rather than stand up for yourself and say no thank you.
Others may think of you as agreeable, easy-going…kind. That is until you get fed up and blow up because you just can’t take it anymore. Or you might be the sulky kind, slugging along not giving anything your full attention because deep inside you really don’t give a damn.
Quit Faking it. BE the Truth! Say no!
Easier said than done? You’re darn right it is. “Just Say No” (or the polite version of “No, thank you.”) is a challenge for many people. They want to say no, but they don’t want to be perceived as a big meanie, the one sore thumb that isn’t a team player, or the party-pooper that is notoriously no fun. We want to be liked, so we swallow the no and do it anyhow.
The danger is that at the end of the day,when we don’t stay true to ourselves, the person that doesn’t end up liking us…is us! When we let down our authentic true self, we open the door to the cycle of self-loathing and mental abuse that we heap on ourselves for letting us down.
Work on Your Boundaries
Here is a tip for those of you that struggle with this. Spend some time with a piece of paper and pen and write down your IDEAL WORLD Boundaries.
Ideal World Boundaries are exactly what they sound like. In an Ideal World, I would create boundaries for myself that looked like….
Fill in the blank. Fill it in with the truths that your heart and soul are crying out for in the back of your mind. We all have that voice, it’s the voice of our spirit. If you aren’t hearing it, chances are you have ignored it for so long it has become a whisper. Or it shows up in the disguise of anger, anxiety, whining, complaining, martyrdom or depression.
If you are experiencing these symptoms on a regular basis, reexamine your boundaries. Are you putting your personal needs on stand by while you take care of everyone else besides you? Have you ignored your creative passions and favorite hobbies because all of your time is spent traipsing along following someone else’s passions? Create an Ideal World Boundary page. And if you aren’t sure exactly what your spirit is crying out for, don’t despair. Take some time to note when that sense of resistance shows up. Pay attention to the times when negative emotions rear their ugly heads and ask yourself- What do I need right now?
What Happens When the Person Standing in your Way is YOU?
I have some good news and bad news for you. The person standing in your way of creating the authentic YOU is always you!
At first, that might seem like REALLY bad news. After all, you having been trying for years, maybe decades trying to rid yourself of your bad habits and it is always an uphill struggle. But it really is good news! You see, you tell yourself that this is something you can’t control, that you can’t help giving up your personal life and space for others because it is what they demand, expect or want.
The truth is that they demand, expect it or want it, because somewhere in your verbal or not verbal communication you have said it is okay. Okay to take advantage, okay to expect way too much, okay to trample on your needs, dreams and desires. You didn’t pay any attention to them so why should they?
The only time anyone will respect your boundaries is when you start respecting them yourself FIRST.
If you aren’t important to yourself, you won’t be important to them.
If you aren’t loving to yourself, you won’t seem lovable to them.
If you aren’t spending the time to rejuvenate, listen to and cultivate your own unique desires, passions and needs then don’t expect anyone else to do it for you. Chances are, you haven’t even communicated how important they are. Chances are, others have no idea what is really important to you anyway!
But..I Don’t Want To Be Selfish.
This is a favorite excuse of women, especially mothers and caretakers. Men too, but I suspect they won’t often admit it. It seems selfish to create boundaries that take care of our personal and professional needs. It seems selfish to put ourselves first. We feel guilty…we feel like bad guys, and heaven knows we never want to feel like a bad guy.
How about we turn this paradigm around.
You are being selfish and a “bad guy” when you don’t give your family and friends the very best you that there is to offer. You are being selfish and a ‘bad guy’ when you deny the world all the creative talent, beauty and love that you have to offer. You are being selfish and a bad guy when you are grumpy, angry, sulking, whining and defiant because you didn’t take the crucial time to fill the well.
Creating boundaries for your self care is good for the world, good for your families, friends and businesses.
Be a good guy. Take good care of yourself.