It can be difficult to be open about the very things that have hurt us most. We are social beings – we worry about what other people think and spend more time than we should paying attention to the opinions of others. It’s easier to hide ourselves from the world and pretend to be people we aren’t. The internal need we have to form a tight friend group and be accepted within our various social circles can often lead to secrecy and a lack of self-acceptance. So, how do we grow to be so comfortable with ourselves that we no longer hide any part of who we are to please others? How do we increase confidence and build a community around us that accepts every part of who we are?
It starts with our stories
& sharing them.
When I say stories, I don’t mean where we grew up, why we work where we do, or what hobbies we have. When I say stories, I mean the deep, meaningful things – what really makes us tick? What inner passions drive us to wake up in the morning and live another day? What makes us cry? What makes us smile? How do we feel when someone ignores us? What parts of our families do we love and what parts have driven us to create different lives for our children than the ones we had in childhood? What has happened to us and what has shaped the person we’ve become?
Part of developing a real sense of self worth and embracing our beautifully flawed personalities starts with removing toxic people from our lives and surrounding ourselves with people who accept the real us. It comes with our ability to share every part of who we are with the world, unapologetically, and we can't do that if we are worried about what others may think. We all know the saying: if they're real friends, they won't care & if they care, then they aren't real friends. Well, it's true.
There is something incredibly cathartic about opening up. It’s scary because there’s always the chance that someone will be turned off by our honesty. Yet, once we start to surround ourselves with good people - kind people - people who want us to be ourselves, it becomes increasingly difficult not to be just that.
So, if you’re hiding something because you’re afraid – don’t be. The people who love you will accept that truth. Those who don’t will fall slowly out of your life and it will be to your own benefit. You'll find that those who leave you will also leave room in your heart for a new community of people who truly love you, for you.
Remember ya'll. There's always an upside.
Featured quote: "What is stronger than the human heart, which shatters over and over and still lives." -Rupi Kaur
Trigger Warning: This blog may discuss topics related to mental illness and trauma that could be potentially triggering. If you or anyone you know is in crisis, please click the link below for 24/7 support. Dial 911 if you or anyone you know is at immediate risk to yourself, themselves, or another.