Living for yourself isn’t selfish, in fact it’s the complete opposite. Learning to trust and find your true self is how you can live your life to the fullest. It’ll bring in the right people and opportunities. Here are 10 tips for finding your true self.
Plenty of us believe we are living for ourselves when we are subconsciously doing things to please those around us. In order to find your true self you have to experiment, take inventory and take active steps to learn more about yourself. Living authentically is a journey and it requires a lot of soul searching.
We all face an ingrained sense of identity that was given to us when we were born. Every aspect of our birth and the way we are raised is out of our control. It’s up to us as we become older and wiser to discover who we truly are. Whether you are born in the wrong gender, sexual orientation or just are following in the footsteps of your caretakers, we all need to decide who we are.
Not understanding your true identity can happen for many reasons. Big life changes, trauma, health issues are all examples of causes of an identity crisis. It can happen at any point in your life but keeping on a path of self discovery is how you can overcome these troubles.
Why Is Finding Your True Self Important?
Finding your true self is important because it gives you the self-awareness to be more independent, more disciplined and more decisive. Self-awareness and independence are both linked to confidence, which means when we live as our true selves we gain more self-esteem. This can help us find purpose, pleasure, happiness and have less inner conflict.
In order to have healthy relationships with others, we have to have a healthy relationship with ourselves. That means honing our power, becoming more tolerant and having more self-control. Knowing who you are makes hard decisions or situations much easier to navigate through.
10 Tips to Find Your True Self
You can find yourself and re-discover who you are at any point in your life. Many of us change and grow, which means there is always a new version of yourself to explore. When we have children or move to a new city we experience all sorts of conflicting emotions. It can be tough to know what’s right or wrong. However, that’s part of the journey!
Thinking of self-discovery as a never ending adventure will make the entire process more fun. It’s like meeting a new friend, lover and partner all over again. Here 10 simple tips to find your true self that you can always rely on.
1. Spend Time Alone
Alone time is so important. Being able to sit with your thoughts and engage with yourself is one of the biggest parts of self-discovery. Alone time allows your to explore new things without the pressure or judgement from the outside world. Being alone is a crucial part of growth and personal development. Learning how to be alone is how you find new interests, needs, opinions and get away from the judgement of others.
Schedule alone time into your calendar, even if it’s only once or twice a week to start. Having a family can make it hard to find alone time, but it’s important to remember that independence leads to happiness. This is true for raising kids as well. Encouraging independence in children allows them to become more self-sufficient and confident.
2. Reflect On Past Relationships
Whether it’s a friendship, work-ship or romantic relationship, reflecting on these pasts -ships are important. They allow you to see what role you feel you played in the relationship. You can figure out where you went wrong and what your needs are for your future relationships. Doing this personal work allows you to take accountability for your actions and helps you to not make the same mistakes again.
Reflecting on the past helps us become more self-aware and navigate through our next relationships easier. It is a tool we can all use to improve our abilities to understand others and the reasons behind things. Whether you are aware of it or not, we all carry baggage and as we enter new relationships. That baggage than shifts and moves for the duration of the relationship. If we don’t lighten our load before we get involved with new people, we can find ourselves reliving the past.
3. Lean Into Passions & Interests
Having passions and interests is an efficient way to improve your well-being. Exploring a new hobby or interest can help you become more confident and make you feel more accomplished. Having passions help us find value in the everyday. Passion is the fuel that keeps us on a path that pushes us toward new goals and new achievements.
It is all about time management and staying organized. If you want to explore a new hobby or interest, you have to make time for it. Start with an hour a week and work your way up. No matter how busy you are, with the proper scheduling you can find the time. It’s always easier to say “I’ll do it tomorrow”, but it feels so much better to just do it.
4. Ask Those Around You For Feedback
Constructive feedback from close friends or loved ones is how you can get a new perspective on who you are. Ongoing personal development involves those around you too. As we take a closer look into our lives and our important relationships, getting feedback can help us learn from mistakes and grow. We can all benefit from feedback, it enhances are abilities to make better, more informed decisions.
5. Take A Hard Look At Your Current Relationships
Relationships are a big part of finding your true self. People come and go from our lives all the time. It’s a constant that we can count on. That’s why it’s important to evaluate these relationships as the come and go. The people we let into our lives have special influences on us we may not be aware of. Many times our friends are an extension of who we are or want to be. If these relationships are surrounded by negativity or judgment, it may be time to do some reevaluating. This is also a part of finding your true self. Some relationships are only meant to last for a certain amount of time and if they aren’t pushing you forward, it’s time to move on.
We all play a role in our relationships. There is no right or wrong, because everyone’s right and wrongs differ. So, you have to decide what is right for you and what just doesn’t work. It can be painful and difficult, but if the relationship is no longer serving you it’s time to move on.
This acronym can help you on your path of personal development. It covers all the important aspects of self-discovery. As you live your daily life, these letters can act as clues to understanding the important aspects of yourself.
- V – Values: Your values can be anything you want that is of importance to you. For example, being kind, being creative, healthy or financial security. These are all guides to decision-making and motivation for achieving goals. These values can keep you going and are an excellent way to self-motivate.
- I – Interests: Your interests are your passions or hobbies. To figure our what your interests are ask yourself “what draws my attention, what am I curious about, what concerns me?” Having interests helps make life more fulfilling. Plenty of people build careers out of deep interests.
- T – Temperament: This describes your innate preferences. Are you an introvert or extravert? Do you go-with-the-flow or plan extensively? Do you make decisions based on thoughts, feelings or facts? Knowing these answers can open you up to new opportunities that help you grow and avoid situations in which could exhaust you.
- A – Around-The-Clock-Activities: This refers to when you like to do things. Are you an early bird or a night owl? Understanding this allows you to schedule things when you are at your best because you are respecting your biorhythms. This can also help you when looking for friends or a partner. Having similar biorhythms can encourage stronger bonds and healthier relationships.
- L – Life Mission & Meaningful Goals: Ask yourself “what has been the most meaningful events in my life?” This question could help you discover some new clues to your hidden identity and even your career or life’s purpose.
- S – Strengths: Strengths can be abilities, skills, talents or character strengths like loyalty, respect, love, intelligence etc. Knowing your strengths helps you develop the foundation to self-confidence. Not knowing your strengths can lead to low self-esteem. Take in the good, listen to compliments and pay attention to the clues that indicate your strengths.
7. Journaling To Learn More About You
Journaling is a great way to process and reflect. When life gets tricky or overwhelming, reach for your journal to find some clarity. Journaling can help you identify all your VITALS which then lead you to find your true self. Additionally, having a journal is a way to spend some alone time, understanding your thoughts and finding solutions to your every day problems.
If you struggle with time management and organization, journaling can come in handy. Getting a day-to-day journal can help you block out time for important self-care practices.
8. Take a Personality Test
Personality tests are a useful tool for discovering a little more about yourself. Not all of them are scientifically proven, but they can provide reassurance and answers to some of your simple questions. They are a great tool for understanding yourself a little bit more.
Personality tests consist of a serious of ambiguous questions or images that are intended to help asses an individuals personality traits. Most tests will give you a specific type of personality. However, over time our personalities can growth and change. So it is best to take these tests in a light hearted fashion and use the answers to ask even more questions about yourself.
9. Stop Trying To Fit In
Stop trying to fit yourself into a crowd or group of people. Self-acceptance leads you to find the right people and circumstance. Once you start rejecting other peoples ideas of ‘normal’, you can flourish into who you are meant to be. Constantly comparing yourself or doing things for others can lead to low self-esteem and even self-destruction.
Fitting in with your classmates or a group of people is an ingrained part of many societies. We try to bend to the will of others and what is socially acceptable within that group. However, this only degrades us internally and leads us farther away from our true selves. You can stop trying to fit in, by aiming to belong and accepting yourself. It’s easier said than done to stop caring about the opinions of others, but by following your intuition it will get a little easier.
10. Experiments & Risk Taking
Experimentation and risk taking are importance aspects of finding your true self. There is no innovation without experiments. For us to find out who we are, we have to try new things. Albeit, within reason. Don’t do anything that is against the law or could harm yourself or others.
“Don’t knock it till you try it” is a good thing to tell yourself when a new opportunity presents itself to you. Do you keep waking past a sign in a shop that is advertising painting or cooking classes? Just try it, there is no harm in that. Exploring new interests can help you develop new skills or abilities that further your sense of self and boost your confidence.
Learn How To Find Your true self
At the end of the day, life is short and you will spend the majority of your life with yourself. Why wouldn’t want to learn how to find your true self? It just requires a little bit of work everyday and eventually it will become second nature. Start with a journal and some alone time, then start asking yourself some questions to help you find your identity. From there try new things and lean into your interests.
It gets easier the more you do it. Additionally, it is important to remember that self-discovery is a life long process. We are constantly growing and evolving as we get older. So keep asking yourself some important questions and learn as much as you can about yourself.
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