Be you! Those are the best words of advice I can give you.
A hard life lesson I recently learned is that being yourself feels a lot better than being who you think others want you to be, or who your loved ones push you to be.
I think I know myself well, I’ve done a lot of personal reflection, I know what drives me, my strengths, my weaknesses, and what drains my energy. So when I realized that the job I had started wasn’t a good fit for me, it took a lot out of me. It was highly technical, and I’m an emotional person. I love helping people, whether it be in their careers or personal lives. I’m also an introvert at heart, who still loves and needs social interaction in small groups or one-on-one, but also needs my own space to regroup.
I didn’t want to leave that job because I felt I would be disappointing a lot of people around me, so I stayed. I tried to work harder, I studied more, asked more questions, and tried to figure things out on my own. I tried to convince myself that as long as I kept saying that I could do it, I could. I struggled constantly because I didn’t feel fulfilled at the end of the day, and instead felt mentally and emotionally drained. If you’ve been there, you know the feeling. It eats away at your spirit, your wellness and confidence.
One day, I came to the realization that I had been the one responsible for keeping myself stuck. But on the flip side, I was also the one that had the power to change it too. It was a very tough decision. I laid awake for many nights going over every possible scenario. But I knew I was postponing the obvious. I made up my mind that I had to move on. At first, I felt uncertainty, then grief, then acceptance.
Now I know it was the right decision. I can pursue work that I’m strong at, that brings me meaning and where I’m motivated and driven. I feel more empowered and confident than I have in the past few years. I believe in myself and won’t make the mistake of ignoring who I really am again.
If you are living your life in the way that a loved one, your boss, your friends, even strangers are shaping for you, find the courage to just be you.
Who are you being right now? Leave me a comment.