We all have something that holds us back from evolving into what we would consider to be our Perfect Self. No matter how we perceive other individuals and hold them to some idealized version of perfection, everyone (yes, everyone) has something about them that they either deem frustrating or hinders their growth throughout their lifetime. Not everyone recognizes what it is that is impeding them from being their so-called Perfect Self, and not everyone cares to, quite frankly. Periodically we all come across folks that choose to suppress their shortcomings and spew faux cockiness about like confetti in hopes of blinding others to what they prefer to keep hidden. Some individuals focus on their outward appearance as not complying with how they dream to present themselves while the next person may find their internal struggles as the true culprit to lack of success in life. I’ll say it again-we all have something.
This is not about judgement. This is about how I personally came full circle to find what has held me back personally and perhaps shed some light outwardly. I willingly admit to being vulnerable and a work in progress.
I have been working on my personal stumbling blocks for a few years (ok, a good decade) and I am finally at the point where not only can I instantly recognize these blocks when they surface but also why they are cropping up. This in itself is huge for me. I am not one to lay blame for why I am the way I am. I own my insecurities, my drama (I wish I could say I am drama free but that would be pure lies), and most importantly my treatment of others. As far as my outward projection jiving with the real Me, I think I am extremely transparent. I wear my heart on my sleeve and am ruled by kindness and the sheer joy of the magic of life itself. Stir me up repeatedly for no reason except to see how much I can take and you will quickly be cut down to size. Quick, intense and then POOF! – back to normal softhearted me.
Sometimes an internalized personal journey needs a helping hand. The mind is a wondrous thing but sometimes another outlook can tweak the work that’s already been accomplished to a more refined state. My helping hand came in the form of an individual bringing his truth into my world. As I let down my guard, he called me on my negative self talk and insecurities when they spewed forth. At first I found myself fumbling around verbally to explain my thoughts but there he sat with his confidence and intensity all the whilst gently calling my bluff time and again. At first I felt shocked at the honesty of the questioning. A time or two I couldn’t suppress the tears that slid from my eyes as things come into perspective that I had previously skipped over with upbeat quotes and a turn-that-frown-upside-down attitude. Then I dove deeply into the pool of frustration at the audacity of having to look my insecurities in the eyes. He persisted in his unwavering approach of compassion and helped me to rebuild the walls that I had haphazardly stuck together with flour, glitter and water instead of strength of character and a backbone.
I hear time and again that I always seem to be confident and in control. That I’m usually a breath of fresh air (that’s always lovely to hear I might add) in an otherwise mundane space. While this may ring true on occasion, I am still vulnerable as the next person. Everyone has moments of inner turmoil and self flagellation of the emotional variety no matter how well put together they may seem. In such times, we all need a friend to lean on and trust. A friend that has a way of saying the tough stuff that is so very necessary to hear which allows us to expand and grow into our truth. This is what creates the Perfect Self – by living in our own truth. Our own individual truth, not someone else’s truth.
After repeated introspection both privately and through shared conversation I began to see my demons come into view. At first they were blurry and dreamlike but over time these demons showed themselves boldly as if to challenge me to a dual. I accept their challenge day after day. Each time they slither into my psyche they grow weaker and less harmful. My opponents can now be seen, named, and conquered with fortitude. Although sharing my personal demons openly can be frightening, it can also be liberating. These insecurities can no longer hold me back as I know what they are, where they originated, and why they rear their ugly heads.
My internal demons that have held me back for far too long present as guilt and shame. Two things that can quickly morph into something so much bigger than intended and inflict lasting harm that can carry over into all aspects of life. I have no need to push blame on where these demons came from. They were clearly constructed out of a love that was constricted in its capacity to trust my understanding of life and fear of my making undesirable choices. These demons were imposed upon my view and directly wormed their way into my personal definition of Self.
Shame shows that you are internalizing other people’s beliefs about who you should be (or who you are) and that you need to reconnect with yourself.
Guilt shows you are still living life in other people’s expectation of what you should do.
I have worked diligently to unleash myself from these binds that hold me back and revel in the freedom to choose for myself alone and not because I may disappoint another. Living without being plagued by thoughts of guilt and shame free me up for sharing more love, compassion, and authentic interactions with others. Guilt and shame are heavy companions to carry through Life and I am no longer interested in giving them a free ride. I have finally chosen to amalgamate my inner and outer self together and be exactly who I’m meant to be, not what others want to shape me to be for their own comfort levels.
If you ever feel the urge to throw those two emotions my way, think again. They will quickly be laid at your feet for you to swallow without any guilt attached.