Words are powerful but even more powerful when put together in such a way that they can move people, make people think, or make people take action.
I read a lot, mostly articles but books here and there; I also appreciate quotes like the one at the top of this article. Most of what I read gets lost in the abyss but every once in a while certain words just grab me and force me outside of that comfortable little place inside of insecurity, self-doubt, anxiety, and confusion. The quote above, by Alan Watts, made me think quite a bit. In fact, over the past few days I’ve read it 500 times, give or take 20.
I understand what the words mean but the more I read it I started getting hung up on the “who you imagine yourself to be” part of the quote. Is this referring to our own made up version of who we are and how we live life? Or does it refer to how we often live our lives based on societal or familial pressures? Since there is no wording implying that it is an outside source I’m assuming it means the version of who you THINK you are because you struggle to see the truth…although I’m not completely content with that meaning.
For me to “wake up to who I am” requires me, or anyone, to:
1) Stop being so hard on myself
2) Find comfort in the skin I am living in
3) Focus on my life, what I’m doing and how I’m doing it, rather than focusing on what other people are doing or not doing
4) Stop allowing other peoples insecurities, boundaries, and fear affect me
5) Be open, honest, and fearless with myself about who I am
It seems pretty simple to “be who you are” and maybe for most people it is but I have always struggled with direction, with defining myself, with being hard on myself, with wondering if I’m good enough for myself or anyone else, and with whether I’m doing enough or even doing the right thing at all. It’s tough to “take stock” of what you are and who you are but I think it’s an invaluable part of this journey. Those that don’t, in my opinion, never fully live and never fully be who they could be…wasted potential to some degree.
This journey is about growth, learning, evolving, changing, and discovering new paths. I’ve come a long way from when I started this aspect of my journey but I have so much more to go…and I look forward to it. I hope you’re on a path that you can look in the mirror and be happy about, if not, it may be time to “take stock” and look for a new path. Cheers!!