Being true to yourself

Being true to yourself

Benefits of being true to yourself
Being true to yourself is important for confidence, self-esteem, self-respect and even success. However, being true to your own beliefs and your own character can be difficult and linked to feeling trapped and anxious. You may feel overwhelmed by perceived responsibilities to other people and as though other people expect you to act in a certain way. If you are not being true to yourself you may find yourself frequently daydreaming about an alternative life, worrying about past choices, needing to please others and living on autopilot.

Five ways to be true to yourself
Be active in your pursuit of happiness: as humans we can have a tendency to expect other people to make us happy. Evaluate what makes you happy and pursue it! Consider a hobby that you enjoyed when you were younger or a goal that you have always wanted to pursuit and put your energy into it. Ensure you prioritise your new hobby or goal and don’t allow yourself to be limited by others expectations of you.

Learn assertiveness skills: finding it difficult to say no or feeling as though others make your decisions can lead to a feeling of not being true to yourself. Being assertive with others can be difficult, especially balancing it with not appearing aggressive. Our previous blog talks about relational tools to build assertiveness.

Accept your vulnerabilities and your strengths: human beings all have strengths and vulnerabilities. When we try too hard to hide our vulnerabilities, we don’t get the support that we need from others and may also be hiding who we truly are. Equally, many people find it hard to acknowledge and celebrate their achievements and successes. To be true to yourself try to see yourself holistically; acknowledge your flaws and celebrate your strengths. Say thank you when someone compliments you and work hard to use feedback from others.

Evaluate (and change) your relationships: many people find themselves trying to make other people happy to the detriment of their own wellbeing and wishes. While being supportive to others and fostering relationships is important, it is equally important to ensure your relationships are positive for your own mental health. In our blog on avoiding negative relationship patterns we talked about the importance of reflection and communication which can help you to be true to yourself.

Self-compassion and self-nurture: being compassionate nurturing towards yourself is difficult but an important part of being able to be compassionate and nurturing towards others. Practicing self-compassion can help you to accept yourself for who you are.

If you are struggling to be true to yourself and this is impacting your emotional wellbeing or your daily life then you may benefit from some therapeutic support. A therapist may support you; to speak to Dr Julie Hannan please phone 07530854530.