You be you. This is so much easier said that done, isn’t it? But, why? I have really been digging into this ever since I moved to Los Angeles, as I initially felt surrounded by people that just didn’t “get me” – they didn’t know me growing up, they didn’t know my twin, they didn’t know my parents, or what healing was like after the accident like my best friends did at “home,” and the list continues on.
This is such a real feeling but a binding excuse to keep falling back on. After countless conversations with my sweet husband, I realized I was trying to take the easy way out. I would avoid the effort rather than the pursuit; I was seeking easy comfort (AKA watching Friends cuddled on the sofa at home), which in turn, developed into loneliness. I was exhausted from the daily adjustment to a brand new city and often depleted of energy to put in the effort of being vulnerable with new friends. Not to mention, the root of the problem was fear of man coupled with the desire to be accepted as I walked into a community of Jason’s friends who felt like family to him, but not to me yet. This all seemed so intimidating at the time, but Jason encouraged me to just be me. Simple clarity: that is what everyone desires. For you to be you.
What I came to discern is that I was making this so complicated. It really is quite simple. How do you act around your best friend or your closest family member? You can be free and honest and thoughtless (in the beautiful sense of the word). I still have to remind myself to be this way sooner rather than later with new friends. What are your fears of being fully who you are? What holds you back?
Tips to be you:
- Keep it simple. Take it at your own pace. Have grace on yourself for not doing it perfectly. New friends are not being your harshest critic.
- Go outside of your comfort zone. You will be so glad you did!
- When you are overwhelmed, remind yourself of why you are grateful. This mind set has changed my life and depletes so much negativity!
- Don’t doubt yourself. It is so easy to get in your head, questioning if people like you.
- Admit your fears and aim to conquer them.
I have to share with you this brilliant Ted Talk where Renee Brown discusses the power of vulnerability. #gamechanger
images by felicia lasala